Today has been one of those grading-days where I’ve had my head down, working, from sunup to sundown: not the stuff, certainly, of an attention-grabbing blog-post. But moments ago, Reggie began gently pestering to go outside, and knowing that a senior dog’s request to go “out” really means “now,” not later, I immediately put aside what I was doing to lead Reggie downstairs and outside into the backyard dog-pen.

How, I wonder, could Reggie’s bladder have known that “now, not later” was the precise moment when the sun was setting, streaking our backyard sky with a striated pattern of red and gray, a spectacular spot of color I would have missed had I kept my head down, working?