A Dog That Knows Me

Carmela the basset and I now have a weekly date on Saturdays. Around Thursday I leave a note for her, asking if she’s free. Reads something like this:

Dear Carmela, would love to walk with you on Saturday (sabado). If  available don’t forget to ask your parents. Will be waiting by the gate at 11ish. Love, Susannah

I’m sure her family thinks I’m nuts, however, either a maid or one of them brings her out all harnessed and ready to go. It would be so much easier if I could call, but the language barrier makes it difficult. I can see them trying to decipher my note that always more or less says the same thing. If I just put an X they should know my intention.

How things have changed since our very first walk. Carmela was so apprehensive…pulling back towards her father, looking at me suspiciously. Now when we meet, she can’t wait. It’s as though she’s thinking…oh I know the drill…we stroll, you let me do whatever I want, then we come back home all loved and tuckered out. Count me in.

I’ve clearly earned her trust.

We also don’t go to the park very often…too much going on for her. An alternate route along Third Avenue seems to work better, and now she knows all the store keepers who go weak in the knees when they see her.

She’s a real hit in the shop WINK, a little funky boutique selling sexy dresses and Hunter Boots. The security guard is Spanish, so he talks to Carmela in their mutual language.

She looks at him very intently while he speaks as if any minute she’ll answer.

One can assume without a doubt, she’s one bilingual basset hound.

Then we visit Herb the doorman who keeps a bottle of water just for her. She pops right in the front door like it’s a neighborhood bar. He holds it gently while she guzzles it like a beer giving her whatever’s left in the bottle she carries herself. It’s the hound in her bringing home its prey, in her case, plastic…five cent deposit.

We amble back up to Madison, home, 50 or so minutes later.

I will admit the last couple blocks are tough. She collapses like a blow-up dog in the middle of the sidewalk. “Come on Carm,” I say, hoping she’ll rally quickly. When all else fails out come the treats that work every time. “You know we’re not suppose to have carbs Carmela,” but like any other full-figured gal, she really doesn’t care.

Yesterday I went to see if she might be out sunbathing, but instead was in the kitchen eating. I stood on the sidewalk watching through the window when suddenly she turned, saw me, and came bounding out the front door pushing it open with her nose.

My heart, that’s been a little heavy, lifted itself on its hind legs.

She knows I come for a quick visit, so like any good hostess, tries not to disappoint and in turn gets a a nice long hiney rub, something she loves (who doesn’t).

Animals are nature’s own Mood Elevator.

Could put Prozac and company right out of business.

Wouldn’t it be great getting a prescription for a dog instead of a pill?get-attachment-1 WOOF!



About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Amazon.com. Thanks.
This entry was posted in animals, humor, Love and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to A Dog That Knows Me

  1. micklively says:

    Obviously a friendship “made in heaven”: I am happy for you both.


    • I remember what you said about my recurring themes…no one gives a shit about me and my canine tails, if you will. I just can’t help penning what pops up in my heart. Hope all is well in England.


  2. skinnyuz2b says:

    Susannah, it sounds as if Carmella lights up the day for quite a few people in addition to yourself!
    While living on Dean Road, we had a black lab (Wolfy) that made the neighborhood circuit each day. Everyone saved him their leftovers from the previous night’s supper.


    • It amazes me how people respond to her when it shouldn’t. Look at me…I’m a nut around her. When she starts moving at a reasonable pace I say…now you’re walkin Carm…yessirree…insane…I’m insane Skinny.


  3. I’m so glad that Carmella knows how to work her magic. I had to laugh at the struggle towards the end of the walk. Chester would turn into a slab of concrete and suspiciously revive into an olympian at the scent of a treat. These hounds know how to work it!


    • Awww Chet…you haven’t mentioned him in a while…I still have his picture the sweet boy.

      Yes, Carmela is very smart. I stopped to see her yesterday and she now knows my bag may have treats in it…but alas, it did not so I gave her, what I thought would be a sip, from my water bottle. Well, she guzzled like a chubby sailor then took it right from my hands and went back inside the house. Despite my shock, I laughed. Bassets…the Kramer of breeds.


  4. AF says:

    Funny you should mention Prozac. Years ago I actually managed to get off Prozac while taking care of a friend’s two dogs for a week. Watch your back Eli Lilly.


  5. katecrimmins says:

    The best of all worlds! A dog to borrow and give back. It’s like having grandchildren. All the fun and none of the work!


  6. MJ says:

    I enjoy you recurring cast of characters, taled and tailed! Your adventures with Camille may get more comments than those with Carmela (or Anthony the pit, or Pidge the pigeon—who evidently took flight after a brief appearance) but they’re part of the life you write of so well, and give your blog so much more dimension and resonance. Love the pic, too!


    • I just saw her…she was on her way outside. They keep their door open, which is insane, but they’re from Argentina so to them it’s perfectly normal so she gets to bop in and out. When she sees me she gets quite enthused and of course, she loves my bag because there may be cookies in it. I had a few so we had a snack, she and I. I really love her MJ. She’s become such a light in my life. Thanks for reading what I write…it continues to humble me 🙂


  7. Patricia says:

    I have been sorta awol but had some time to read and not just write tonight. So nice that I came when you had such a happy post. Carmella maybe just well be what the doctor ordered if he knew enough to order it. Doctors aren’t always as smart as a dog..


  8. Shugo has been sitting down in the middle of the street (no cars) while walking here in PA. He is not used to the hills and he just tuckers out at the end of the walk. He sits in the middle of the street and looks at me like I am the crazy one for walking in such a place. Great story, and yes, dogs are great lifters of spirits.


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