His name was Pepper, and he changed my life.
Our family of four was on vacation in Maine, and I was around ten years old. My memories of most parts of that vacation are vague, as I imagine I was only as present for that trip as my daydreaming adolescent mind could be at any given moment. I remember staying in a cabin, as our family often did on our road trips to various destinations. I remember visits to the beach, where the cold Atlantic water lapped at the shore and the sand was dark and damp. I am quite sure that Maine was beautiful, although my memories of it seem to be colored mostly gray--due to the weather, or the 17 years that have since passed I cannot say...
But there is one place in my memories of that vacation where things shift into focus and the world pops into color. It begins with a spherical object of neon yellow-green, rolling through the grass. A tennis ball. Followed closely by a snorting, snuffling, shining black beast of ridiculous proportions and comical disposition. The ball was the singular object with which he was enamored, and I, immediately, became so with him. My first encounter with a pug.
I can't say what it was about him that struck me so immediately. Maybe it was the perpetual emission of spontaneous snorts and grunts that accompanied his every move, reminding the ten-year-old girl of a piglet and sending her into fits of giggles with every breath. Maybe it was the singular focus with which he pursued his beloved tennis ball, a tireless playmate that only a child could truly appreciate. Maybe it was the black fuzz that covered his plump body like velvet, or the soft whiskers that tickled when he snuffled a stroking hand. Whatever it was, it has never left me. I was hooked.
I am pugged.
From that moment on, the mere sight of a squat little body with a pompous prance and telltale curl has been enough to send me into full-blown paparazzi mode: pug sighted, commence high-pitched squeal, all systems go for watching, following, chasinguntilICATCHTHATPUG! I kid, of course (about the chasing part, anyway) but I never fail to get over-the-top excited about an encounter with my favorite breed.
Even my own. Fast forward to present day, where the pug-loving little girl has FINALLY (after years of wanting, waiting, and writing only "A PUG!" on each year's Christmas list) acquired not only one, but two, pugs of her own. And that is my reason for writing this blog. And it is a story for another--for every other--day.
They are my best buddies, and I can't wait to share them with you.
2 years ago