Friday, October 14, 2011


Tamar the dog pants, indicating she is in pain or at least uncomfortable.

It reminds me of Claude panting in his last weeks.

It is the first time Tamar has been so unwell. The doctors say she should feel better tomorrow. She’s had the first two doses of antibiotics and today she had a B12 shot and some dog aspirin and I could tell she rallied.

She hasn’t peed or pooped all day and can’t walk.

Everything they say will clear up and I am sure that it will. Still, it is hard to see her so uncomfortable.

This morning for the first time in her life she did not get up, but stayed in her bed all day.

I went on our walk without her, to smell the woods and move. I ran into Nancy who lives across the street with a small overweight dog called Sammy. “Where’s Tamar?” she immediately asked.

Both yesterday and today we have taken her to the vet. Both times I have had to overcome my kneejerk reluctance to let medicine intervene, but both times have been so reassuring. I felt like that was why it was so expensive – because I felt so much better afterwards. Less in the dark, optimistic.

Every single person in both facilities – receptionists, assistants and doctors, about 10 people in all – were female and, except for one, very young. The assistant today had blunt nails painted silver.

I am working on my manuscript, perhaps the thing closest and most important to my heart, not counting some living breathing entities who shall here remain nameless.

This lovely three-day stretch away from the office gave me a new start on an early morning ritual that I hope will stay with me, revisiting several pages every day for a buff and polish.

Also in these three days I have drawn a line. I have said no and no more to a woman who was coasting, a woman I thought of as a friend, but a person who was draining, drawing on me, not much you could say, but a steady drip drip drip like the faucet that I walked over to Timo’s about, early on one of these refreshed summer mornings, walking down Tinker St. before the town is awake with the weekend spread out before me, hoping I would find Timo to come fix the faucet.

The woman, the friend, I let her down. Out of nowhere. She didn’t see it coming. But there was no pretty way to do it. It was something that I slowly realized really had to be done, to leave her, send her back to the quicksand of her life to let her come up with something, to withdraw the rope I had thrown and that she would not let go of.

And I painted a room in the house and found the perfect table at a yard sale for $12 and tomorrow I will go back to work and people will ask, did you have a good weekend? And I will say – it was fantastic.

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