December 7, 2014

Postcard from Nora (formerly Rita's Melissa)

Almost four years ago, we became the parents of a little golden girl from Taiwan, named Rita’s Melissa. Brought to our house by Nestor who had fostered her for months, she was frightened, shy and nervous. After lapping up a bowlful of water, she jumped from one foot to the other to let us know she was ready for a walk so my husband Alan happily obliged by taking her on one of their long daily journeys. And, so life with Nora began.

She was always an easy dog to care for because she asked never for anything, was grateful for anything given. She never barked and slept much of the time. We are both retired so we are around her almost all of the time but in the beginning she seemed indifferent to our presence. The only time she cried was after she had eaten and was in the kitchen. Then she stood at the kitchen door, afraid to move. Apparently she had been confined to a kitchen in her earlier life and was begging us to allow her to come into the rest of the house. When she did come into the living room or dining room she hid herself behind a chair and slept. She was afraid of almost everything—fire hydrants, any large object, to a certain extent, us. We couldn’t go near her face and when we called her, even in the house, she wouldn’t come. I think she thought nothing good was going to come out of contact with any humans.

But gradually, we are so happy to say, she has settled in and we have become a family. When we sit on the patio, Nora is with us and the neighborhood children swarm around her to pet her or bush her hair. Her tail wags constantly with pleasure. If she’s not with us, she cries to come out. If we go in, she cries to come it. She sleeps on her bed at the foot of our bed. And when we watch television, Miss Nora is literally right under our feet, I guess, so we can tickle her every once in a while and watch her brush the floor with her glorious bushy tail. She is a joy in every way, and through her daily walks with Alan she has become a fixture in the neighborhood. Known and loved by all.