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68 A.A.

Was reminiscing with wife about the difference between Abby and her sisters was her makeup. She came in with eyes that had seen stuff, and a rap sheet that indicated a strong bias against Homo sapiens.

When she first arrived, she was Lex Luthor with four hairy legs and a big juicy nose. She was diabolical in her plans to escape from us, pounce on our slip ups, or secretly devise a scheme for a later time.

With effort, love, and time she slowly was rehabilitated, but the majority of the progress came with the addition of her weak little sister. All that evil and selfishness was harnessed and converted into “showing the ropes” to Lydia in how to take a walk, how to pee, and how to beg for car rides. She was the full-time translator between us and Lydia, while also directing the family in daily activities- when to wake up, when to walk, when to eat, when to nap, when to ask for treats, when to take a drive, and when to go to bed.

When Tilly came along Abby curtailed her executive activities and took on the role of punching bag for the rambunctious upstart, handling it like a doting grandparent. Most of the time…

Her transformation from arch enemy # 1 to sister Abby was nothing short of a miracle. But her conversion to Sister Abby made me forever grateful I had a front row seat to watch it.

Another realization I had recently was how special a gift it is to have a dog selective on who it likes.

At first, it was disappointing to have a dog set a line of demarcation on skin-ship. She was adamant about personal space. But after time, that line slowly washed away. It was like a safe cracker, with soft hands and a keen ear, gently and carefully opening up each number on the combination, when finally they all click and it’s open. That’s what it was like to get to Abby’s heart. And when that heart opened the treasure was more than you could’ve ever imagined and kept giving until the end.

She was the only girl who ever liked me more the longer she knew me. Most of the time us humans get somewhat tired of same act of our partner for years on end, but for some reason with Abby, and probably most dogs, she looked forward to the all the same routine we offered each day.

And I could always count on her same routine of meeting me at the door when I came home, the apple for dessert request, and coming to sit in front of me when it was time for us two to go to bed.

I wish I could have that same bland boring sameness again.




166 A.A.

Gramma out of the hospital. And back to normal. She bragged that in her room of four people she was the only one who didn’t wear diapers. And for lunch, while she was getting hiyashi chukka, my wife,

157 A.A.

Rainy season has lifted, and the heat has set upon us. Brutal. Adding salt to that wound is that mother-in-law is in the hospital. Gallstones. Two weeks. Two surgeries. On the bright side- Total expen

164 A.A.


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