We made it through intermission. Opening night. Shakespeare in the Park. I may not be able to move my arms tomorrow (for Stella's unrelenting attempts to make new friends) but at least we didn't get thrown out. In fact everyone was very understanding, her being "just a sweet little puppy and all" I'm told she was listed in attendance as Dog #1 for the season. Sweet.
She was really only interested in Dog #2 which came on a bun just before intermission. It was the thing that finally focused her attention on me - that anchor at the end of her leash. Poor thing. There were 562 people and ten dogs there and the wicked witch wouldn't let her play.
Once the performance started, she actually watched for a few minutes. I just knew she would start barking when the actors began running down the aisles screaming but thank God, that didn't happen. Prior to that it was a lot like wrestling a nine year old. She'd be fine for five minutes and someone with a dog the size of a Greyhound Bus would go jogging behind where we were sitting. Or a big picnic basket would sit close by and and she'd army crawl to the end of the leash while they cooed at her. She got a full rubdown by a number of different kind and tolerant dog people including prized Nashville actress/director, Denice Hicks.
We lasted about thirty minutes into the performance before I finally ducked us under the enclosure and went for the hot dog. After that we sat out by the rest rooms which turned out to be a better plan. That way people could come to her (many did) instead of just finding her rifling through their purses or batting those big eyelashes at their gourmet treats. All in all it was a really fun show and we may even try again next week, assuming they let us back in. We'll be the ones at the hot dog stand.
(Note: Follow The Nashville Shakespeare Festival on Twitter @nashvilleshakes Diva dog Stella shows off the freckles in their video (above) at around :56)