I’m Feeling Like a New Father These Days


At 80 I’ve been feeling like a new father now that Adriana has a puppy. Buffy is a smart little dog. She understands a sharp NO when she pulls the screen filter I put in the shower drain so I wouldn’t lose my ring now that my weight is down. Likewise when she stops licking my hand and starts nipping at it in puppy play and I say NO, she stops. I’ve been trying to teach Margarita and Adriana to mimic me rather than talk in a sweet high voice like you talk to a baby. Buffy’s been responding to “Good girl!” when she goes outside to do her business. But she’s been seen digging near and under the back gate. Nobody bothered to give her the NO. Rather they just filled in the excavation with the soft dirt or put a large rock in it which then hindered the legal opening of the gate. They think differently here.

I’m not ready to leave Buffy alone in the house. I remember the damage Duke the Wonder Dog did in our first house when left alone. Buffy is much smaller than Duke and she’s more tranquil. She loves to run and chase her ball. She’s content to chew on her rubber duck and a stuffed doll that Adriana gave her. But I’ll feel better once I’m sure she can handle being alone in the house in the morning when the kids are in school and Margarita is visiting her mother or off praying somewhere.

Therefore my biking schedule is in tatters. It’s been shady, cool and relatively comfortable to ride at 7:00 or 8:00 until 11:00 or so when the sun was low. But now the sun is to the south and it gets hotter more quickly. By the time I get home from a later-than-normal start I am exhausted. Now the dry season begins. That means fewer or no clouds to block the sun. No dark rain clouds at all to let the breeze hide the temperature. So if I can’t get out early, I tend not to go out at all. I don’t think I burn quite as many calories pulling weeds or cutting branches from the bushes. I do get to walk Buffy as a break from the computer.

I confess that I enjoy being home with Buffy. We play together little bits at a time. I relish her affection and marvel at her exploits as she investigates her new home and outdoor environment. If I watch TV from my recliner, she’ll try to climb up with her little tail wagging. I have to pick her up. She’ll get on my chest and lick my chin. Then she’ll do an about-face and make herself comfortable between my legs. Sometimes I have to wake her up after a movie is over so I can get up. 

I think the best part of being at home is when Adriana comes home from school. Buffy is so happy and so is my daughter. She picks her pup up and caresses her like a baby. She’ll have such a smile on her face that I want to cry. I am sure that Buffy has strengthened the bond between us and I am happy.



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