We’ve all been through it.
Topdown with Chester, Kate with Jake.
Even me, who, whenever I see a tube of any kind, still cries over Carmela the Bassett Hound, who is still among us, just in Jersey.
Or is it Pennsylvania?
But loss is loss that stays with us same as any other wound.
So when I ran into Dot on her corner in a torrent of tears, only one word came to mind.
Tess…as in her beloved Dalmatian last I saw, resembled a Mattel toy one winds up to get it going.
Tess was 16, and Dot had her as long as I’ve known her. As a matter of fact, I simply can’t imagine one without the other.
You don’t see many Dalmatians, not even at the local firehouse, a myth if there ever was one.
Tess, like all long-legged creatures with grace and fine bones, was a true beauty settling into old age stoically.
As I did my best to comfort Dot, assuring her, mourning was normal losing such a noble comrade, she tearfully told me as if she were the worst person in the world, she hates herself for prolonging Tess’s parting by keeping her on sordid medication causing her last three days to be agony.
Despite my lapsed Catholicism, Good Friday came to mind.
Oh dear, I thought, knowing how some owners just can’t make that sad, fateful decision to put a pet down. Have seen it many times, and to quote Lucille Ball who had a slew of little dogs, it has to be about them, not you.
But alas, it was much too late, even for Lucy.
“You know Dot,” I said, “Tess is no longer in pain, which is what’s important, and I’m sure is running happily in a heavenly park with Homer the Beagle, and Coquette (the gourmet store’s cat who would tease her from the window), so you see, all is well.”
She cried a few moments more taking out Tess’s collar she had wrapped, like an totem, in her coat pocket, so I suggested we go see Sherry the framer to have it mounted.
Did I mention Dot is very, very short?
I thought what an odd couple we must make, as we solemnly crossed Park.