The walk begins and it's fairly normal. Stop. Start. Stop again. Sniff a lot. Pee on bushes. Sniff some more. Start walking again. Walks with Dahlia are fairly slow and this one is no different.
Suddenly she rushes forward onto the grass between the sidewalk and the road and sits. Her ears are up and forward. Her eyes are bright and focused. Her whole body quivers in anticipation. And that's when I spot it. The Holy Grail of vehicles: The UPS truck.
It's sitting on the side of the road, currently driverless. He's delivering a package in one of the houses nearby. But this doesn't stop Dahlia from staring in excitement. She knows what's coming.
The driver returns to his truck and smiles at the dog whose tail has started to wag, while the rest of her body remains in the seated position, quivering from barely-contained excitement.
He turns the key and starts the truck up. VROOM! It makes a huge sound, a gigantic thundering sound of what, to Dahlia, must surely be sheer awesomeness. She jumps up and immediately starts to bark. This is not a bark of fear. This is not a bark of aggression. This is a bark of pure joy! Her face is set in a smile, her eyes are bright and excited. As the truck moves off, she races on ahead after it, barking all the way.
When finally the truck has pulled further away than her leash will extend, she rushes back to me with a huge grin on her face as if to say "Mom, that was awesome!" I squeal in delight, for I share her joy and love to see her like this.
And then she spots the truck parked further down the road. Another package to deliver. She races on ahead and looks back to me as she does so. "Mom hurry up! We can do it again!" I run with her. Her excitement is infectious.
We stop just slightly in front of the truck and Dahlia immediately goes into her sit, quivering with excitement yet again. The whole process repeats itself until the truck has driven on, around the corner, and is no longer of interest to the crazy black dog who is left panting at the side of the road.
The UPS truck is endlessly fascinating to Dahlia. Other trucks (including those of Fed Ex and other package delivering vehicles) are passed by with barely a glance. Why the UPS truck holds such a fascination for her when the others do not will likely remain a mystery to me.