Sunday, September 20, 2009

Journal Sept. 20: Day 3 with the Blind Poodle...and What I'm Reading

As a dog-lover, and one who prides himself on how easily dogs take to me, it is a challenge to spend a lot of time with a special-needs dog who prefers to be left alone.
The poodle I'm caring for, who is blind, is often disoriented and growls and barks at noises she doesn't understand.  Because her skin is very sensitive, she dislikes being petted for more than a second or two...she will snarl and snap if she feels uncomfortable.  I have learned to give her her space, walk her when she emerges from her crate, and let her come to me.  I talk in a calming voice and she seems to like that. I have very mixed emotions, especially when she looks in my direction, responding to the sound of my voice, and stares at me with her glazed eyes and cocks her head comically in anticipation of a treat. Four more nights....
I am now reading Jhumpa Lahiri's "Unaccustomed Earth", a collection of short stories.  Lahiri's voice is steady and she pays attention to the mundane sequence of actions in everyday activities, while using delicate language to explore the anguish of a broken heart, or the feelings of being trapped between cultures, family members, or generations.

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