Our two dogs are solid members of the family, and although one is neurotic and suffers from seasonal allergies that cause him to scratch mercilessly at his long spaniel ears, and the other is more like a 60 lb cat than a dog, we would miss them terribly if they weren’t here.

The last week (and for a few more days until the middle of this week) we have been up at my parents’ cottage. Hiding away from the world on a little island reachable only by boat. It has been wonderful. I have spent a good few hours of each day working on my thesis, while papa (and a friend who came to visit) has been playing with Mausi. Our spaniel has rolled on the grass, gone swimming just about each day and raced up and down the front gaden chasing sticks and other toys. While our chow, usually on-guard against the countless enemies that may invade our condo stronghold (strange footsteps in the hallway, strange dogs crossing the parking-lot below our window…) has spent his days lying contentedly on the deck, the dock, the grass, and from all vantage points observing the lake through half-closed eyes. Unlike the spaniel he is decidedly against swimming, but absolutely adores wading.

For Mausi the dogs are as much a part of her world as mama or papa, the shelf with her books or the ficus tree in the corner. They just belong with us.

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