Monday, July 9, 2012
The Walk Witch Gets Her Wish
Singer is my walk witch. She never lets a day go by without reminding me in her subtle way that she wants to go on her walk. Doesn’t matter if Jeff or Nate have already given her one—she has to have a walk with me. Every single day. No matter how brutal the heat, or how tired I am, she wants her walk with me.
She’ll give me looks, wait patiently until I get up and then try to lead me to the front door. Wagging her tail, she’ll look at me as if I’m a dense child: “Do you get it? Walk?” she seems to be saying as she looks at me so expectantly. I might hurry on, as I did tonight, busy with dinner preparations. She’ll lie down in the kitchen to wait, watching me.
Like a witch, she’s actually plotting her next move. I have a daring thought: I think I may be able to sneak off after dinner to the deck and get some writing down. As I walk to the door, Singer’s right by my side, like a horse trotting to first place. She blocks the door to the deck. I stand aside and let her out first. She prances around the yard, checking out her favorite chipmunk sites, and I think, “Good, she’s happy.” I boot up my laptop.
She runs over to the deck, jumps up on the table and looks down at me, her ears hanging forward as she looks right into my face. Her eyes have a disapproving look, as if she is an old crone coming out of the woods, wondering if her potion has taken effect yet. “Singer,” I push-pet her back, but she paws at me. First one paw, then she tries the other one. She tries to paw my laptop, so I stand up and walk over to the railing, setting my laptop precariously on the railing. I get a few minutes of work done. She is still on the table, watching, waiting. Her patience is admirable.
I try to sit back down again, and the walk witch tries another tack. She starts lovingly licking my thigh, slowly at first, from top to bottom. It tickles. “Singer…” I try to brush her away. Finally, I look at her, laugh, and give in. The walk witch gets her wish.
Yesterday, a Sunday, it was too hot outside to groom Singer on the deck. So I set up a card table in the cool basement and worked on her. She loves the stripping comb now, which I use every week to keep her under coat thinned out. She sometimes lays on her side and I will slow down and work on her, remembering how I used to love taking care of my dolls as a little girl. I loved to brush their nappy rough hair, dress them, talk to them, bathe them. I would use my allowance and buy them diapers and dresses at the neighborhood drugstore. Teary Deary was a baby doll I especially loved. Singer Bell Ringer is my baby doll. She loves her weekly massages, and I love to brush her fur until it shines and smooth out all the tangles so that her fur lays nice and flat. She has a sort of curl to her coat, which is hard to manage—I suspect there are show products that get the curl out. But her weekly grooming sessions leave her coat looking more uniform, less clumpy, and definitely more shiny. She always takes a jog around the yard after we’re done, and I admire how beautiful she looks as she makes her way around the yard. She’s my walk witch, but I can never say no to her for long.