I am changing the name of my first brew, because something magical happened. The magic has nothing to do with the beer, I’m not that good (yet).
So relax, don’t worry, and have a homebrew while I tell this little tale. It’s kinda long. I’m indulging here. Sorry. My blog. Ha!
On our twice-daily foot-powered commute, my spouse Mudcat and I pass through a neighborhood with huge houses, expansive yards, and all kinds of dogs. One particularly special dog, a goofy sweet yellow lab, used to greet us with tons of tail wagging and happy dog dancing every morning and evening. We don’t have a dog (yet), so we pretty much fell in love with this guy. Mudcat bonded hard with this fella through the front gate. They had a special understanding.
Well on Thanksgiving weekend, we came hiking up the hill and the dog wasn’t there. On the post nearby was a flyer with his photo. “Missing: Yellow lab named Bennie. We all love Bennie! Please help us find him.” Ugh, the heartbreak! I admit, I cried silent bitter tears the whole way home. We speculated that someone had taken “our” dog, and worked up a considerable froth of anger to fill the void. He was irresistible, and always out in the yard where anyone could open the gate and coax him out. What is WRONG with people!
The next day, we saw the homeowner for the first time. Mudcat said “Hey man, sorry to hear about your dog. Any word?” The man’s thin face fell, “No we just don’t know what happened. The gate was closed but he was gone. Thanks for saying something though, it really means a lot.” We introduced ourselves and learned his name was “Ames.” (Awesome name, sweet guy). Then the next evening, hiking up that same hill (with sad eyes and a little less pep) we heard a smash followed by a child screaming. Our feet followed our ears to the alley. It was dark, but we could make out a man with his daughter, maybe 8-9 years old. Looked like she’d been learning to ride her bike and got a little road rash. “That you, Ames?” Mudcat called into the alley. Ames again. And that little girl, she must be missing Bennie! He thanked us for our concern. We were getting more involved with Bennie’s family each day. Somehow it eased the heartache. But I was still considering an alternate route for our daily walk, so we wouldn’t have to pass that big empty yard.
Meanwhile, I started brewing my first batch of beer. (That is how little beer has to do with this story. Are you still reading? Wow.)
Yesterday evening, we came trekking up that hill, and I felt a familiar rising hope, (usually followed by a crushing wave of disappointment) as we neared Ames’ house. I heard a bark, probably the neighbor’s dog. It was cold, and I put my head down and settled in for the worst part of the hill. But then, a shocking yellow blur came bounding over the top of the yard, down to the fenceline. I believe we uttered “No…..WAY” in unison. Bennie was there, and as ecstatic as we were. If he’d had lips, he’d have been smiling… if we’d had tails, they’d have been wagging. Doggie dances all around. We ran up the hill to a very sweet reunion. I was speechless (for once). We’re going to write a congratulatory card for Ames and family.
The good stuff doesn’t happen that way very often. So in acknowledgement of a true miracle, I’m renaming my very first Texas Golden Kolsh homebrew “Bennie’s Midnight Lark” (formerly Midnight Sun).