The little blind doggie
With the sweetest of temperament
Looking at her sitting there, head cocked a little to the left, you would not have known that she was blind. She was a tiny little thing, with a very pleasant demeanor, so calm and relaxed was her countenance.
I smiled, we were going to get along very well.
Her name was Marta. I lived my doggie experience vicariously through her eyes.
Let me be honest, I have never owned a dog. I got bitten as a child, and was so traumatized by both the bite experience and the many tetanus or rabies or whatever shots I had to endure, that dogs still remain a bane to my existence. They are wonderful, and I love them from afar. But I was asked to doggie sit this adorable little bundle, and I could not resist her cute little face.
Now, I was advised of Marta's breed, but my abject trauma was always very present on the surface when around dogs, large or small, so much so that I do not remember a thing that I was told, rather, I was so focused on my fears that I was not really listening to the initial instructions. I only heard the end of the conversation.
Little Marta was really old in dog years, and had multiple cataracts that could not be removed, which rendered her unable to see properly. She liked to be carried around and snuggled, she was loving and very easy to get along with. Marta loved everyone and was very trusting.
Marta's owner was a very successful Manhattan lawyer. She has just lost her husband of many years, and wanted some time off to take a much needed vacation to visit her son and his family. She was extremely reluctant to leave Marta. She feared that not everyone would be as patient and kind to little Marta as she was.
Jane was a friend of my aunt's, and asked her to recommend someone to watch Marta. She was going away for two weeks, during which she would worry a lot about her loving pet. I was on vacation myself, so aunt suggested that I take the temporary assignment. Truthfully, Jane was offering a most generous sum just to watch her doggie for two weeks. I realized that she must love this little bundle a lot, so I went to meet them.
Generous bounty aside, I just fell in love with Marta. Jane placed her in my arms, and she just snuggled close and licked my face. She approved me for the job I guess, and hired me on the spot, whether Jane liked me or not.
I am thinking that Marta sensed my secret fear and tried to assure me that it was going to be just fine between us.
So, in our posh, upscale Manhattan, NY apartment, fridge fully stocked, tons of books which Jane advised me that I was free to browse and read, while cuddling with Marta, television to watch, and just have jolly good fun with Marta, we began our two weeks of doggie sit.
I am still not sure whether I was doggie sitting Marta, or she was people sitting me. We watched television, I narrated for her while she yipped her appreciation, or I would read aloud for her while she listened attentively, it seemed she understood every word, with her little head always slightly turned sideways, and an intelligent wistful look on her face.
Sometimes she choose to sit on my lap, or she would lay on her tiny bed at my feet to relax, listen or just go directly to sleep. She did not eat a lot, just small bites a few times per day, but she drank a lot of water with vitamins recommended by her own personal doggie doc.
The highlight of her days were the times that we went walking. Marta loved the outdoors. The first time I took her downstairs to walk, I was going out the door when the doorman distracted me, asking me something about Marta. I turned to answer and poor Marta walked into the door, gently, because we were going really slow. She yowled so badly, and turned to look at where she thought that I would be, that I felt really bad. She was not hurt or anything, but geez, little Marta's feelings were hurt. I was extremely careful after that.
As soon as she realized that she was outside, she would start to run. I certainly got my quota of exercise in with my little bundle of fur scurrying along the streets and sidewalks. The only time that she stopped was to make her doggie do, pooper scoopie made her vey impatient, and we would be off again. We did our trips outdoor twice per day, and she always dictated when she was ready to go for her outdoor activity.
The days flew by. We had great fun. Mommy called often to check if Marta was doing all right. Marta would yip her appreciation, and assure her that all was going well. Pretty soon the two weeks came to an end.
Jane came home and Marta hesitated a few seconds to jump from my arms to hers. Jane said that was a good thing. She felt happy that Marta had been comfortable with her time away from her, and that it had been spent well. She asked a few questions and seemed pleased with Marta's time spent with someone else. Apparently, that had not happened before.
I was a little reluctant to leave. Marta had grown on me and I would miss her. I kissed her goodbye.
On my way out, the doorman Nate, we had chatted a little each time that I took Marta out, whispered that Jane had enquired, discretely, on mine and Marta's time together. He said he told her that we had been out and about, and running all over the place. He said she seemed pleased.
Some months later, Jane had wanted to take another trip, and enquired of my aunt if I were available. I was by then back to work and unable to watch Marta. I so wish that I could have seen Marta again, but I had to decline. I hoped that she found someone else who was kind to sweet, trusting little Marta.
Little Marta had almost returned my faith in everything doggie, but not quite, the big ones still scare me.