Mr. Ashbury has a new best friend.
As you know, I was absent from home last week - away on a writers' retreat that had been more than a year in the planning. Mr. Ashbury himself had gone to the Caribbean in October for a week with our daughter. This is not unheard for us, to take separate vacations. We've never lived in each others' pockets. As a matter of fact, many nights at home we spend a fair bit of time in the course of the evening involved in our individual pursuits, rarely talking. What might seem odd to some people works for us, and has for more than 40 years.
When I returned home on Saturday, my daughter intimated that her father had been unusually lonely while I was gone this time. She had been concerned because he told her that he went to bed each night before 10. That's really not unusual for either of us, but she was worried. And she took the opportunity to reiterate to me that daddy really, really needs another dog.
At the dawn of this new decade, and then again just last year when my beloved and I were talking about our animals, and acknowledging that our faithful Rochie was getting old, my beloved stated, most emphatically, that once the poor pup was gone, there would be no more dogs in this house. I happened to agree with him, for we've had dogs consistently throughout our marriage. He wants to continue to travel, and having animals that require care by others when we are gone is a challenge to that.
The reality of the situation, however, has proven to be quite different than the hypothetical discussions. My husband, pure and simply misses his dog greatly. He misses the routine of a dog, and the companionship. He'd been getting some of that with my daughter's Chihuahuas. And as she has been thinking, out loud, about breeding her dogs, my beloved has been discussing—with her—the possibility of his taking one of those pups.
But that is a year or more in the future, and, it seemed to our daughter that her father was lonely now and needed a new best friend as soon as possible.
Sunday she came over and showed her daddy a picture of just the kind of dog he'd said he'd like this time - something small and fluffy. The puppy was a "Morkie", which is a Maltese/Yorkie cross. I had never heard of the breed before but the little guy sure looked cute. She asked me if she should get it for her dad, and I told her to discuss it with him.
One two-part rule that my beloved and I both hold sacred: neither of us presumes to speak on behalf of the other, and neither one of us ever tells the other what to do.
In light of our past discussions and recalling in particular his vehemence, I expected my husband to say no, but he surprised me and said yes.
Now here is where you learn just how old fashioned a wife I really am. Even though we'd agreed, and even though I'm not certain this is a commitment that I want to undertake, my husband wanted that puppy. Because he wanted it, he should have it. Period.
The little guy arrived a few hours later, joining our family Sunday afternoon. The new addition is 8 weeks old, and has come complete with his first and second set of “shots”. He doesn’t weigh much more than a pound, and will not, when fully grown, weigh much more than 5.
Mr. Ashbury has named him "Tuffy", short for "tough guy".
My beloved's sense of humor is finely honed, and I can report to you, that when the two met face to face it was a case of mutual love at first sight.
I think my beloved would take the little guy to work with him if he could.