No, this post isn't about the Orson Scott Card book. What? You don't know who Orson Scott Card is? SHAME on you!! Ender's Game, look it up. Buy it, borrow it, check it out.
No, this post (shamelessly overdue) is about my family's new dog. Tonight via Skype, Jill and I met Frank. A few weeks ago, my parents were forced to send one of my chocolate labs to join Charlie, Old Dan, Little Ann, and Old Yeller in that strange and wonderful paradise devoted to man's best friend. Claude was her name. Her liver basically shut down without warning, and keeping her alive would have been cruel. So closed one of the most cherished chapters of my life.
Tonight, I met the new dog that was chosen as a companion to Claude's sister, Cleo. Whoever says dogs are dumb or emotionless obviously hasn't witnessed a puppy who has lost her lifelong friend. Cleo was depressed, lethargic, and unresponsive. Was. Frank, the adorable Rottweiler mix, has completely changed all of that. I know that this dog will never know me the way Claude did. I'll only be able to meet him through sporadic visits to St. Louis. He will never stare at me adoringly as I make a turkey sandwich (hmmm... maybe it was the turkey sandwich that was getting stared at), he'll never curl up at my feet and breathe that sigh of contentment that only dogs have perfected, and he'll never pull his ears back and wag his tail when I come for a visit as if the world is once again complete.
He may never do that, I know. But he's there. In my old home. Comforting my lonely dog Cleo. Bringing joy to my parents who I miss. Watching over things while I am two hundred miles away. And for that, I already love him.
Too bad his name is Frank, short for Franklin. That was going to be the name of my first son. Whoops.