I was cooking dinner and as usually happens, whenever I put the oven on over 400 the smoke alarm goes off -- even though I Do clean the oven!
So it went off Saturday evening. When it happens our routine is to open the back and the front door to get the air flowing through. It is a pain because it scares the cat half to death. Well Saturday evening it went off twice. Scruffy complained loudly. Unfortunately I was so concerned about stopping the noise that I didn't close the back screen door. It is just a regular size door but the screen slides back into the door jamb. It's not easy to see and we have walked into it a couple of times.
So I finished cooking dinner and then we ate. It must have been a good half hour later when Barry took the dishes into the kitchen and noticed the back door was still open. No sign of Scruffy anywhere. For the next half hour we went all around the house and yard calling him. I didn't think he would go far but by now it was getting dark and we all know what happens around the creek after dark. We went up and down the street calling, but not a sight or sound of him. The gate security came by and helped us look.
After about an hour I decided to get in the car and look in the next street over. I rolled the windows down and began moving slowly down the street calling him. Three streets later there was still no sign of him. It was now nine o'clock and since this is a retirement park, I'm quite sure I kept a few people awake. On returning to our street I decided to go around the block once more. I was quite sure that if he heard me he would answer. He nearly always does.
Sure enough half way down the street, maybe three doors away from us but on the next street, I heard him cry and then give his excited little yips he does when he's trying to tell us something. He was up on a long verandah that runs along the side of a house and he couldn't get through the bars. I walked him to the back steps and picked him up. But as soon as I put him in the car he jumped out of the window on the other side. There was no way he was going in the car, besides he was quite sure this was our house, because he immediately ran up the steps to the front door. The houses here all look so much alike except for the landscaping and the configuration of the porches.
Fortunately my husband appeared at that moment. He had stayed at the house in case Scruffy came home.
Long story short -- we got him home safe and sound -- and not very repentant I have to say. Remember the story when my sister was here? Well he's eyeing the back door now in the same way! So I'm keeping ever vigilant!
Honestly, I don't know who was more exhausted, him or me.