I adopted a dog. His name is Levy, like a tax. And like any puppy, and tax, he is a burden - no more yoga classes for a bit, constant surveillance and house training instead. But a burden I gladly take on. Because he's sooooooo cute. He's so cute that everyone else thinks he's cute, not just me because I'm his mom. He's for real cute. Like a puppy model. Which I'm not opposed to by the way. 

Life after Bello has been pretty lonely. Two years of missing that guy. Just recently I recounted the time we went to the river and he ran out to the shallow water, right next to a happy group of waders, and took a shit. He looked like he was just sitting out there and I was confused for a second before I recognized that tell tale eye contact he was sending me across the sand. Keep walking I told my friend. Bello was such a jokester but sometimes at the expense of others. 

I still miss him with all my heart- all. my. heart. So I decided to adopt a dog that has no chance of being another Bello. Levy is just too small, there can be no comparing a Chihuahua/Blue Heeler with an Orange Lab. Size means a lot. I hold him all the time! And he needs a sweater. And I live in fear of stepping on him and snuffing out his life. These are not Bello concerns. This is not another Bello. Levy is his own guy. Swift, smart, a wisecracker, a punk, a snuggler, a baby. 

One thing that is the same is that I take him everywhere I go, just like Bello. But because he's so damn small I can't leave him outside on the sidewalk while I shop or some such thing. He has to come inside. I have to be a small dog person now, his little head poking out of a bag, miniature tongue sneaking out toward the samples at New Seasons. Its embarrassing but also not because he's soooooo cute. 

The other night I took him to a dance performance. An arty, cool production that was part of the Time Based Art Festival currently running in Portland. I figured because it's Portland nobody was going to be so lame as to say no dogs in the theater even though there are no dogs allowed in the theater. I had him in a black cloth Barney's bag and I was dressed up so I slipped in without a hitch, haughty style, and sat down with all my girlfriends. I wish that was the end of the story. He slept for the first half while the dancers were naked and loving and the music was fluid and soft. I felt proud of my little guy and my decision to include him. And then the second part started. The tension in the room rocketed as the dancers began to fight on stage and the music became loud, a combo of marching band and fireworks. Levy sat bolt upright. He stared with horror. He bucked around, his eyes wild, scared. I held his little shoulders and kept him in place, stage whispering Stay every 10 seconds, his collar jingling like crazy. I was at level 10 for social anxiety and could not stop scanning the room for signs of the dance ending / my escape route. This went on for at least twenty minutes until it ended and everyone clapped and whooped and he celebrated as well by growling and biting my hand. As soon as the lights came up I stuffed him in the bag and without saying bye, left the building in a cloud of sharp BO.

Ahh, dogs. Its good to be back. 




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