Jowls, limp, cranky attitude
Eyes crossed, heart mighty
When we lived in the city, like real city people we had a dogwalker. He came once a day to dispense biscuits and walkies to the dog and lots of opinions to the humans. That's if we happened to cross paths, which we'd do our best to avoid. Roger was one of those people who'd just plunk down on a kitchen chair and rattle on about who knows what, oblivious to any signs that we were ready for him to move along. It was only the other "animal children" on his route that kept him from staying parked for hours. Once I came home from work early to take something to the post office and discovered he hadn't yet arrived. As I gathered my things I heard him huffing up the front stairs of our building. Like a total coward I actually sneaked out the back door just to avoid being waylaid.
Still, he found other ways to dispense his wisdom. Three-minute long voicemail messages, say; or his daily notes reporting exactly what happened during the walk. Not just what the dog produced, but anything they saw or people they met. Once there was a page-long tale of a "Young Girl" who accused Roger of not picking up after our dog. He defended himself by pointing out that the "feces" she had indicated were not fresh, since they were no longer warm. To prove this, he wrote, he made her touch them ("I provided tissues," he noted). I'm sure the Young Girl was sorry she ever tangled with Rog.
If only I'd saved more of those notes (or had a blog back then). We did preserve the final missive. Here it is, with only a few identifying details changed.
Well here we are! Down to the final walk. These past four (almost) walking F. have been good. She will be missed. The years go by as quickly as a wink. It was good to work with you & I tried my best.
Of course I knew Jeff from the times at [his former address] when he would take care of [a friend's dog/fellow Roger client] & I would travel down to walk the canine
Please enjoy the new page of your collective lives in [Mayberry]. I am very happy for you also especially Jo who will have a chance to attend good Public schools when she is ready.
Until we meet again
I do wonder about him still. If he's still shuttling up and down the Boulevard with his animal children, living with his cats, complaining about his landlord, his neighbors, and most of humankind. I hope so.