A few hours ago Brandy and I went out to eat. Amy was going to stay home working on a school project and we were going to bring her back food. As we were leaving, Amy waved goodbye to us while hanging on the back fence.
When we got back with the food almost two hours later, and we came in, Brandy noticed that the dog did not come running. She quickly discovered that when Amy had been hanging on the back fence, she had accidentally unlatched the back gate. Roscoe often spends a few hours each afternoon and evening freely coming in and out of the house to the fully fenced back yard. This time he of course at some point noticed the open gate, and decided to take himself for a walk.
As soon as we realized what had happened, Brandy and I immediately split up, first walking the usual routes where we walk him, calling his name. Amy stayed home with the door open in case he came home. She was a wreck, crying and blaming herself for letting him out.
When there was no sign of him we gave up walking and instead we each drove slowly around practically every street within a one mile radius of the house, looking for any signs of him and fearing for the worst, as Roscoe is not necessarily aware of the dangers of streets and cars.
After about an hour, I had parked the car at home again and was walking various bike paths and looping around our usual routes again. Brandy was driving a few more loops on a few more streets before returning to do more by foot again. Around the 90 minute mark I got a call from Brandy. She had him.
About a third of a mile from our house, off our residential road, then onto the main road through the neighborhood, down a few streets, Roscoe had made a left at a fork in the road and was walking slowly down the sidewalk. Brandy stopped her car. She got out. They looked at each other for a moment, neither one moving. Then she called him and he ran to her as fast as he could and jumped into her arms. He then happily hopped straight into the car and curled up on the seat. He was done with his adventure.
A few minutes later he was home and eagerly drinking water from his dish. We were all very relieved. This could have ended very badly.
Of course this means Amy has not yet finished her school project which is due in the morning. But it is very late, and she has headed to bed, exhausted from both the hour and the emotional toll of the last few hours. Her clock is set for earlier than usual in the morning. Hopefully enough to get he project completed before school.
Or course, that is of lesser significance right now. Roscoe is home and Roscoe is safe. We are very very glad.