Tail of a dog.

Almost every Wednesday for the past four years, Peter and Nobby have visited area nursing homes with Bill, Peter’s faithful companion.  Nobby is the star of the weekly events, of course, and he luxuriates in the cuddles.

Last week, Bill arrived on time, as he always does, and Peter was ready, though he usually is not. As they headed out the door, I yelled, “Haven’t you forgotten something?”

Peter turned. “I don’t think so…,” he said.

I pointed to Nobby. “What about him?”

“Oh, is he going?” he asked, as if this were something new.

Well, yes,” I said. “It’s Wednesday.” Peter shook his head, disgusted with his drifting memory. Bill and I couldn’t help but laugh at the thought of Peter walking into the nursing home, red leash in hand and no dog attached.


More and more often these days I have to remind Peter — make that nag — that it’s time for Nobby’s walk. This morning, Nobby waited patiently by the basement door. When I called to Peter, he said, “Yes, yes, I’m coming.” Nobby flip-flopped his tail hopefully.

Finally Peter came up from the basement. I heard him fiddling with the leash. After a spate of muttering from Peter and a few yelps from Nobby, I went to investigate. They were in the laundry room. Peter was laughing so hard tears were streaming down his face. “Helped when I put the leash on the right end,” he said, sputtering.

“What, you mean you put it on his back end?”

“Yes, and he didn’t like it.”

“Poor dog! I’m sure he didn’t!” I said. “How would you like a harness around your nether region?”

Peter grimaced. Nobby got two treats.DSC00224_2

Header photo: Nobby at Pandapas Pond.

2016 National Society of Newspaper Columnists’ contest finalist. 

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