As I rounded a corner in my neighborhood, a small dog was streaking up the street toward me, and being a recent rescuer of furry things I decided I needed to HELP. Noble intentions, right? As the dog passed by my car in a blur, I pulled up next to the small child (maybe 6 or 7 years old) and said,
"Sweetheart, is that your dog?"
That kid looked at me and tore down the street like the boogey man was on his tail. It was clear: his parents had told him strangers offering to help him get his dog (too cliche' isn't it?) are the dangerous sort. So he ran like mad straight to his daddy.
I pulled alongside the home and asked the father if that was his dog and if it was, did he need help getting it? I mean, clearly I'm a mom--driving a crossover SUV, carseat in the back, make-up rubbed off after a hard day's work--but this man peered down the driveway, all suspicion in his narrowed eyes and I felt the need to add:
"I was just trying to help. I wasn't trying to be creepy or anything. . ."
Note to self: Announcing the not-creepiness of yourself ensures that the other person thinks that you are, indeeed, creepy.
Moral of the story: dog home & I'm now that lady in the neighborhood. I sure hope Elliott takes the Stranger Danger lesson just as seriously. . .