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When I was a kid my parents bought two boy golden retrievers. We raised both of them for the first year and then gave one to my grandparents. As a child, I had the responsibility of raising and caring for the dog that we gave to my grandparents. They would often take the dog along to their cabin in Potter County. Outside the cabin, there was a piece of sheet metal that had been propped against a tree beside the cabin and was slowly developing rust. The sheet of metal was in the same place for many years.

Anyway, several years ago both of the dogs died within about a year of one another. About 6 months after my grandparents' dog passed, I went to spend Memorial Day weekend with them at the cabin. When we arrived I walked in the door and across the cabin there was what appeared to be a picture of the dog. I asked my grandmother what it was and she explained that it was an old piece of rusty metal that had been sitting outside the cabin. They had found it outside on the first trip to the cabin after the dog has passed and decided to bring it inside to keep it from rusting any further. Standing right beside the piece of metal it looked like a rusty piece of metal; however, from a distance of at least 10 feet it resembled the dog's face and neck almost perfectly. Like I said, the first time I saw it, I thought it was a crude painting or photo of the dog. That piece of metal set outside and was rusting away for years. The rust pattern never resembled anything until immediately after the dog died.

At the time, I had just started dating my girlfriend and she was along for the trip when I first saw the image. She had never known the dog but said right away that it looked like a golden retriever. That dog was particularly dark for a golden retriever. Looking back on it now, his coat was always a golden rusty color. That piece of rusted metal did not just look like a dog, but it had the exact facial features of the golden retriever that traveled to Potter with us over the course of a decade. I never asked them why, but when they got a new golden a few years ago, they named him Rusty.
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