15 + 14 = A Life Living

As we know it. We’re married 15 years today. When we first married he talked about having baby and I said “No way, we have to get a dog first.” Why? to see how bad you are. Our dog will be 14 next week. He was bad. I couldn’t have babies so she has been ours since she was six weeks old. Picture a father who wouldn’t let his daughter leave the house to go on a first date until she was 30. No, not the dog. She never dated.

He is very indulgent with our dog Zoe, even giving her a scrap of food from his dinner plate. I do not allow that and ask that something drop into her dinner bowl. Semantics, I know, but enjoy having a few friends over for an informal dinner and after she shows off with her ball, she plays her own game, missing link.

She circles the table and chooses the guest most likely to give her something from the table. Shame on you, Zoe! I do warn guests before dinner and let them know they can give her a couple of treats AFTER dinner if she does a couple of tricks for them. Hey, she’ll be 98 in “people years” next week so I give her a break and she is very gentle with all visitors, including other dogs, babies and toddlers, and even likes cats.

In one linear week we’ll have been married 15 years today then Zoe will turn 14. That equals our life. Our nuclear family, anyway. Let’s see, fifteen and fourteen equal “twenty-nine.” Was that my birthday last winter? I don’t know. My husband had me place my birthday and wedding date in his ring years ago. He just never looks! It is a kind and joyful life and I’m blessed that I met my husband two weeks after 9/11.

A number of us met randomly at a local chain restaurant bar at lunch and most had a burger. We talked about 9/11. Three hours later it was only the two of us. We had talked about dairy farms, movies and a lot of other things. We walked out to the parking lot, he walked to his car after shaking my hand and asked me if he could drive me to mine. No. He said that as movie buffs, we should go out as friends sometime.

I walked towards my “car,” actually walked home. I always walked to get most groceries and rarely went out to lunch but was upset with a client who hired another consultant because I was caught in 9/11 overseas and no-one could fly home so I sent said client $2K of work for a finished grant and edited his newsletter for free so went to the restaurant. Well, perhaps the President could have flown on our dime but he was busy in a library.

After that time I had to bid adieu, need to feed the cats.  Before shaking hands in the parking lot, we exchanged numbers, mine was a land line and he was a tech-y guy and still is so. He called me the next evening and asked me to a movie. He opened my car door, took my hand, and never let it go for 16 months and now fifteen years of marriage later.

We decide depending on where we were to live, to keep one car for the time being. There were no real impediments to living in a city that is very warm and humid most of the year. So I could run errands during the day to grocery or vet, I drove him 1/2 mile to work every hot weather morning. Zoe did it once and decided it was fun so “routine.” That is what one calls a herding dog. Think about it. I’ll have one more but one must be prepared and do some breed research.

He wanted to leave me the car but didn’t want to walk in because his business dress clothes would have been ruined so we drove him in every morning in hot weather. He exited the passenger side, closed the door and waited for the light to cross the street to his building. As soon as Zoe saw him cross the street, we were by the bus hut and she would pop up to the passenger seat to go home.

Everyone waiting for the bus or walking along the street to work saw her and laughed. They said, she looks like a person! She just hopped up there and sat as if she had on a seat belt and I took her home.

It is not a triumvirate but we have perhaps a symbiotic relationship of sorts where we three help our strengths and are able to correct weaknesses. When my husband is away on business, Zoe is of concern and we take care of each other. I don’t know what we’ll do when Zoe is gone as she’s a herder, annoying, demanding, cute, sweet, loves and takes care of us especially keeping me safe when my husband is away. LIFE, Dee

 

 

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