The temperature in Minnesota has dropped to a number that is too embarrassing to admit.
On a quick trip to the store to buy some fresh mozzarella for a homemade pizza were making tonight, the temperature proved a force to be reckoned with. Our car coughed in exhaustion before finally starting up with the scariest, about-to-explode-from-too-much-effort, sort of noise. We hurried to the car, Harper in tow, and drove to the market, a mere .5 miles away. I ran in while Eric waited with Harper in the running automobile (in true Minnesota fashion). Then we zipped back home, letting Harper 'do his business' before rushing inside.
It was during this 'doing his business' portion of the evening that it began to get frightening. Harper ran a few yards away to attend to his business in private, Eric following after him with a plastic bag at the ready. But then Harper wouldn't move. Eric grabbed him by the collar and directed him toward the house, but he only went a few feet. I stood on the porch frantically calling his name. Eric prodded him on. Finally, Harper just froze, refusing to go another step in the too too too too cold Minnesota winter. It was at this moment that I saw the sweetest and most heroic thing I have ever seen.
Eric picked up Harper, all 85 pounds of him, and carried him to the house. It was too cold to be outside and it was too cold for our sweet dog to walk any further. Left to his own devices, I believe he would have hunkered down in as small a ball as he could manage and given up. But, instead, Eric picked him up and carried him home.
And believe me, he has been the most grateful dog since.