A Basset In Brooklyn

get-attachment-5I went to visit Carmela.

Woke up with a terrible headache afraid I’d never make it, but after whining to my friend Ed who recommended ALEVE, I was off and running…numb from the neck down, but hey…it got me on the train.

I took the local to Brooklyn Bridge so I could stroll across, something I’ve always loved doing, then walked the five minutes to Carmela’s new home.

A four-story townhouse built in 1899, majestically sits at the end of a beautiful street right across from the Promenade, a perk for our pooch who practically has a park in her own backyard…plus a backyard.

I knocked quietly rather than ring the bell peering into the window thinking, if only these walls could talk, when who’s casually tooling by but Carmela who stops and jumps on the window sill, howling, something she rarely does.

It reminds me of an old Kaye Ballard joke about the kid who never said a word until he was 12. “MOTHER…THERE’S NOT ENOUGH SUGAR IN MY COCOA.”

The mother, stunned, says, “You spoke, OMG, why did you wait so long?”


A maid I’d never met came to the door holding a mop like a bayonet.

“Si?” she said, having no clue who I was. By this time Carmela was on her hind legs  attached to my waist.

“I’ve come to walk Carmela,” I said, realizing she spoke no English proceeding to play charades acting out why I was there. Luckily, the woman of the house came downstairs  happier than I’ve ever seen her.

“Suz-anna’,” she said, kissing me on both cheeks.

She showed me around this elegant house, Carmela never leaving my side. Every time we stopped she’d jump on me again. When I asked to use the bathroom, she came too, not about to let me out of her sight. Try peeing with those eyes staring at you, paws the size of mitts resting on your thighs. I was thrilled, just not used to an audience, but determined to adjust. We’re both women, after all.

I took her for a forty minute walk only because it started to snow, and like most girls, Carm hates getting wet.

By the time we got back, her father was up so we had coffee together…me on the floor with Carmela on my lap trying to drink from my cup despite her dad scolding her in Spanish.

The nice thing for her is…their kitchen is on the second floor reached by a long staircase she can now climb. In the old house, she was only allowed on the first floor.

Have you ever seen a basset hound climb stairs? Imagine a giant caterpillar on speed. It’s pretty hilarious, and more so in her case since she looks over her shoulder to make sure you’re coming.

I hated leaving, but told her, I’d be back. We agreed if I so wanted, I’d come on Saturdays.

I left my house at 10, returning at 1:30 after taking the express from downtown Brooklyn getting me back home in thirty-five minutes. Wasn’t as scenic as walking across the Bridge, but fast.

I noticed there’s more spring in my step then there’s been since Monday, when Carm and her family left, so I think this trip to Brooklyn once a week may work out.

And who knows, it might just end up replacing ALEVE.



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.
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26 Responses to A Basset In Brooklyn

  1. I’m so happy you got to see Carmella and that her parents made you feel so welcomed. Life is good!


  2. micklively says:

    I’m so pleased you two are reunited. It sounds like a bit of a journey but obviously worthwhile for both of you.


  3. Elle Knowles says:

    So glad it all worked out for you and happy I got that sneak preview! H said you should get a dog of your own. I told him you were rolling cat ideas around in your head. A pet’s a pet no matter what and man’s best friend comes in all shapes, sizes and brands! 😉


  4. skinnyuz2b says:

    Yippee! Things are working out for the New Year!
    As far as Aleve goes, I take it the moment I feel a migraine coming and it almost always staves it off. My headaches are a result of muscle tension caused by a combination of the fall on my head and carrot whack (Ch 1 – ‘Carrot Attack’). My youngest sister’s migraines are of a hormonal nature, so unfortunately the Aleve doesn’t work for her.


    • My friend Ed also has terrible migraines. Sometimes ALEVE will work in the onset. It’s terrible to have a headache…incapacitating at times. I’m sorry you get them too.

      Yes, it was so nice to see Carmela and she seems happy in her new digs 🙂


  5. Lynn says:

    I am so glad you were able to spend some time with Carmela! What a dedicated friend you are to her, it’s no wonder she was attached to your thigh!


  6. So glad her owners made you feel welcome. You haven’t always felt that way in the past. Maybe a good thing came out of the move. She looks a little chubby but that may be the camera. You know what camera’s do to a girl!


  7. MJ says:

    Oh, what a triumphant post! The weather this past weekend was so dismal, I’d feared it would be a spoiler for you and Carmela. But I did get a bit of uncanny canine reassurance from Grace, the church beagle. She belongs to the monsignor at a church nearby, and divides her time between the church basement and the adjoining courtyard. Grace doesn’t normally come out “in the teeth of inclement weather”, as Dickens put it, but when I was passing by late Saturday afternoon, she popped out of her special door and leisurely trotted over to the wrought iron gate, where she could get up close. When I asked “Whutsup, Grace?”, she regarded me for a moment, then broke into what looked like a knowing doggy grin before bounding back inside. That gave me a different perspective. Here I’d been visualizing your trek to Brooklyn against the dreariest backdrop, and when it turned out to have all the warmth of an old-fashioned photograph. I’m so happy, Susannah!


    • Grace the beagle sounds great. Yes, the weather behaved itself for a good part of the time. I got to hang out with her indoors, an unusual event, but as they said…Badooklyn is deefrent…yes MJ, it certainly is, however, when I saw her, every cell in my body that was on it’s ass rose up to meet her.

      Grace the beagle? Love her.


  8. MJ says:

    Grace is a real fixture at the church, and much loved by her right reverend owner. There’s even a plaster/resin likeness of her in the manger scene, right alongside the ox and the ass.


  9. That brought a smile to my face, Susannah. I’m so glad you found her and everything turned out okay. I love your descriptions of her. I’m sure she really missed you. I’ll now have the image of a basset hound climbing stairs in my head all night as well. 🙂


  10. Gordon Roberts says:

    I really enjoyed reading this article! I have just launched a book on Basset Hound care, here is the link http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00T4D9PA0


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