My mother calls my dog a “ragged piece of cloth.” There he lies, sprawled across the sofa, feet stretched rigid in linear lines of fuzz on his side- a resting canvas of coffee coloured fur that has faded over the years. He is exhaling at the rate I can only assume is normal for sleeping dogs. From a distance, he looks frighteningly still. Sometimes I like to yell at him just to check if he’s still alive.
The moisture on his nose is gone now; his nose almost touches the surface of the leather couch, looking like an aged black olive that someone dropped on the floor and forgot. His age is an indicator of when I moved to Taiwan, and how long it’s been since I left. He doesn’t look a day over 2, but he is really already 9 whole years old. That’s the time it takes to produce a somewhat comprehensible human being! I am aghast and refuse to think of the future this way.
“Ahem, what an attractive dog I have,” I would always think to myself when I watched him like this, only to swoop in and interrupt the serene sight by impulsively kissing the dryness of his nose, the curls on his forehead, thoroughly enjoying his drowsy confusion as he would probably think:
“Oh god not this again. Why is there a giant creature trying to berate me with physical contortions and infantile gestures??? I have absolutely no time for this. It is cutting into my slumber schedule.”
For some reason I imagine Mika’s head voice as a post English gentleman’s. And no one can tell me otherwise.