I remember how tentative I was in having a dog at home but a little confidence building from friends and family ( I just have a bunch of impractical folks around me) egged me to go meet this lady whose Labrador had a litter.
I don't know what took over but here I was huddled with two friends in a car to meet Vinci. Its important to share that I loved dogs all my life but in a firm practical sort of way rather than a mushy spoilt love. I thought that would be my safety valve in picking up a puppy.
I COULDN'T BE MORE WRONG.
They were six of them. Wide eyes. lunatic love. Swishing tails and totally earnest. And they tugged at more than the edge of my flared jeans.
Vinci got selected being the only male in the litter. I would have a female dog later but that's saved for another blog. At that moment the practical me was not very confident of a dame chumming over the floor and going through successive pregnancies.( thank gawd my parents thought differently when I was born, I said a silent prayer for their confidence and upbringing)
Nothing had really prepared us for what happened next. Our little dog was barking at the top of his guts. For those who are not familiar with the ways of the exceptional Labradors, it would have been easy to assume that I had gotten a bull mastiff from Kolkatta. Anyways I brought Vinci home. He took to me so naturally. ( Nothing to do with me, labs always do)
In his 3rd month, Vinci was chewing away to glory. Only he thought everyone and everything was edible. I lost many shoes to his teething. Chew balls are passe'. Vinci was into real things.I ran out of T- shirts because IT would poke holes into whatever I wore, I had to be proud of his strong teeth.
A work colleague looked shocked at the number of teeth marks I had on my hand. " Domestic violence", I quipped with a wicked grin.
The funniest thing about Vinci was how he would discover things and people around this period. For example a friend of mine had tad too many drink and kababs at my place. And we were having this very quiet moment on my balcony under a lovely yellow light. She had a bit of a problem with her digestion and she farted loudly. ( if you are reading I am really sorry, but this is not about you, this is about vinci). That was Vinci's first experience with a fart. No sooner had it happened, my four month labrador jumped and stood behind her wagging his tail while the rest of us died rolling with laughter.
Vinci had this other quirk. He would love to roll over and sleep on the bed , a habit all dog behavior therapist had warned me against. I was to throw this lump of love from the bed everytime he jumped on it. I was to act tough love. Tough love is who I have been all my life. But I just couldnt push him off when he curled in the bed. And after many many nights of power struggle, my dog and I woke up in the morning, on the opposite sides in the bed, I feeling foolish that those soulful eyes once again managed to tell me just how vulnerable is motherhood and he sheepish at having won.
My next move was to buy a bigger bed if I had any hope of getting any sleep.
More on Vinci later. Suffice to say that I will be vulnerable and raw about him for ever and ever. That's what love makes you. Vulnerable and edgy.