When I came from seeing Carmela this week I wrote to my friend Ed saying how happy she was to see me. He wrote back – A tail wags in Brooklyn, so he gets credit for the title.
The chef, the only one in the house speaking English, said every day between 11 and 11:30, Carmela sits by the front door waiting for me. This pained and thrilled me at the same time. When I do visit, and they open the door, she whimpers in delight jumping and wiggling like a calf seeing its mom. I get on the floor to hug her solid, tubular body before saddling up and heading out.
We have a secret, she and I. I take her to the dog park where I let her run around for 20 minutes or so. She’s not altered so I have to watch very carefully, but I’m told by Corki the Gorgi’s mom, all the dogs are fixed. She’s such a femme fatale, I still feel the need to be vigilant like any good nanny and hey, you never know, a vet could have made a mistake.
Stranger things have happened.
She’s in heaven running around chasing balls and men who once had them, barking her horny little head off. The hound in her comes out and it’s truly a joy to see. I leave her leash on in case I need to grab her, but I’m very happy she’s getting much needed exercise.
Ami the maid walks her at 1 when I’m not there, but only for 15 minutes. Then she gets another quick walk after dinner. SHE NEEDS MORE, but being a guest in their lives, I must be silent.
We then go to the promenade where she sniffs and tries to open garbage bags while I bribe her with biscuits. She’s very smart so she knows what I’m up to.
Sometimes we sit on a bench for a spell and look out across the harbor. I recite a little Whitman to her while she barks at the occasional seagull.
After an hour I bring her home while she looks longingly down Columbia Heights towards the dog park. If only they would spay her, but just don’t see why they should.
After my weekly cup of bad coffee sitting on the floor with her thrown possessively across my lap, I depart leaving cookies for later kissing her on top of her big, sweet head. She looks at me with Bette Davis eyes as if to say, if only I could go with you.
I know Tubes, I know. Me too.
And she’ll tease you
She’ll unease you
All the better just to please you
She’s precocious and she knows just
What it takes to make a pro blush
She got Greta Garbo stand off sighs
She’s got Bette Davis eyes
Lyrics Donna Weiss and Jackie De Shannon