A Lifeguard’s Saga – Ep.12 – Who Let The Dogs Out?

On the previous Sunday, the weather was exceptionally amazing. Barely any wind at all and the sun gloriously shined upon the beaches of Portugal. Since it was Sunday, a lot more people were at the beach. From either the city or the interior of the country, families, and groups of friends migrates to the shoreline to get that initial tan and the salty taste of the sea.

Around 5 pm a group came by with a guy in a wheelchair. Somehow he managed to sit on the sand by himself while placing a towel beneath him and even folding his own wheelchair as well. Then, as his friends began to arrive, one of them brought a dog of considerable size into the beach. One of them immediately asked if it was okay to have the dog there, to which I replied that it was forbidden. However, after seeing how the young man battled his disabilities, I did not insist for them to leave and told them that as long as the dog is being held and keeps itself quiet, that there should be no problem.

And there they stayed without much conversation in between each other, they were simply enjoying the sunlight. A couple of hours passed by, I had a lot of friends who came to the beach that day, so I was in good company. Then, by seven, I went to the edge of my area to talk with a colleague of mine and again time flew and it was only 10 minutes until the shift would end so we went back to our post in order to take the equipment back to the bar.

I began to move the equipment back when one of the girls in the group I mentioned unleashed the dog and brought him to the water. There was not enough time for me to even talk with her since the dog went batshit crazy on the water and then it ran after a 12year old kid (+/- ). The dog was obviously playful, but the kid’s mother did not see it that way and went right in, running towards her son, trying to get the dog away and already threatening to call the police.

The group to which the dog belonged was rude right away to make matters worse, threatening with violence instead of apologizing and asking if everything was alright. They left right after but the mother still called the police and guess who got his ears warmed up?

In the end, she did not press charges as I also talked with them and explained my position after things had settled down a bit.

You can’t let your kindness get mixed up with your responsibility, or you’ll always be the one held accountable if something goes wrong with this job. Lesson learned the hard way.

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