written by Thomas Lowry
We had planned the trip to Seattle three months earlier. It would be our first vacation as a couple and we intended to pack in as much fun as we could over the course of a weekend. We would leave after work on Thursday and return on Monday morning. We chose Seattle because it was close to Vancouver; the dollar was good then, and there we things to see. Friends had ranted and raved about it so much that we decided that we should go too. There were so many sights they like the Space Needle, Pike Place mall, the Original Starbucks and so on. There was also a show on the Saturday night, an artist that neither Emma nor I had particularly strong feelings for, but a show is always a great thing to take in, especially in a foreign city, in a foreign country. I was excited for the coffee shops, the EMP and to explore the city that sparked one of the most influential music scenes of all time. Emma was happy just to take it all in. Emma is one of the rare people who are happy just about anywhere doing anything. Her zeal is rooted in her attitude, which is almost without bias. She doesn’t really ‘pick and choose,’ if that makes sense. While I’m definitive in what I like and don’t like, she doesn’t take part in such kind of prejudicial thinking. She refuses to put things into boxes to form an opinion. She isn’t a simpleton, not by a mile, she is just a special soul that doesn’t put much stock in what other people think, and in doing so she frees herself up to appreciate things on a much deeper level. Back when we were first dating I showed up for a dinner wearing a red sweater and purple socks. I can’t remember if I was trying to make her laugh or if I had just run out of clean socks but she looked over my ensemble without judgment. She smiled, and just seemed happy that I was there and that we could spend time together. Some girls might make a mental checklist of such a fashion blunder for future reference, but she really didn’t care. That kind of superficial shit just doesn’t bother her. At all.
Written by Thomas Lowry
I don’t remember much about the day my mom and dad took me home. I was cozy in the kennel I shared with my sister, our tiny bodies caught up in each other in a way that might make even a circus performer blush. It might have been late spring, or early summer; the only evidence of the season was the small window adjacent to our kennel on the north side of the room. The window was rarely open, but when it was, fresh dewy air would slip underneath the opening, slink over and tickle my nose as I slept. I was the size of a roll of toilet paper back then, and when you’re that small the world doesn’t make much sense. It takes time to understand things right? It takes time to figure out where you fit in. What I can remember about that day, the day I met my parents is that I was very sleepy. I was so sleepy that I could barely keep my eyes open. The only voice I had known until then was hoarse and laboured, like a wire brush being scratched over rough leather. But that day, that special day, the hoarse voice was accompanied by two more voices. One was high and sweet, and the other, the one that stood out was deep, playful and warm. Even though I was so sleepy I knew that I liked that voice and I would be happy to hear it more. The deep warm voice untangled me from my sister and picked me up out of the kennel and cradled me in his hands. I wasn’t scared because well, to be truthful, I didn’t know my sister that well, and also because I’ve always been pretty independent. It’s not like I knew at the time that I was independent, if you get what I mean. It’s just a trait I have. People have different strengths and one of mine happens to be that I’m pretty independent. I’m quite happy being alone. I don’t need to be fussed over or anything. But when the warm deep voice took me into his arms I felt pretty good and was happy to be held by him. He must have liked me too because he kept touching my head. The other voice, the high sweet one, ran her fingers down my back. The voices continued back and forth for what seemed like a long time, and I was nodding off again; ready to go back to my kennel, to the warmth of my sister’s fur when it happened: instead of being set down back in my kennel, the warm deep voice and the high sweet one carried me right out the door!