The battle lines are demarcated when it comes to Dogs. On one side of the boundary exist my father and brother, who go into raptures if someone so much as utters the D word. On the other side is my mother, whose fear of dogs is only paralleled by her fear of heights (the former marginally surpasses the latter I think; she argues she can always close her eyes if she must stand in the balcony). Where does that leave me? I remain on the line (fence). I adore dogs as a concept, but I can’t stop my stomach from lurching if a stray dog happens to bark at me. This also explains why I’ve petted several dogs in my imagination (only).
Truffle is a handsome two year old Labrador, prone to fits of hyper activity. There have been many times when he had to be tied up because I was visiting, and I would avoid looking at him because I felt guilty. And then one day, Truffle was strolling around the house as I walked in carrying a bag (which he assumed was for him). All too fast, he jumped on me, with two of his legs on my chest, and I walked a few steps backwards (he was heavy!). I froze. Truffle looked at me. Surprising myself, I proceeded to rub his head tentatively, which I suppose was invitation for him to nuzzle and lick.
A small step for Truffle, a giant leap for me.