I miss my little Italian. I think I started this blog as a way to work through my losses and to also acknowledge the gains as they come, which they will. Faith, I’m learning is obligatory to self-improvement. So I must have faith, full stop. Back to my bambino; he’s an Italian greyhound born and raised in New York City. I remember the initial moment I met the wiry creature, he belongs to the indie rock-vampire previously mentioned and is still to this day the best thing to come out of that disaster. I walked into his owner’s expansive upper east side crib for the first time, guitars and amps leaning against the winding staircase. It was a total art deco wet dream, the furniture sharp and uncomfortable but painfully cool, like him. All the while my island girl eyes are taking in this menagerie of wealthy city-hipster a small, trembling grey thing is hopping around my legs. He was all legs himself and had a name grander than his teeny stature. He bit me after that, it was love at first sight.
In hindsight, I think his little heart coerced me to stay in such a toxic situation with his dad, I tend to love dogs more than people so I was doomed from the moment I met him. As his human and I progressed he became an integral part of our relationship. He slept in the bed with us, had a sexually charged and semi-sadistic relationship with the cat, he hated scooters, children and children on scooters. Like any city dog he did a ton of walking and I so enjoyed taking him for jaunts around the neighborhood. We had our games where I’d run ahead and he’d zoom up suddenly barking in proclamation, then we’d trot to the dog park. He was hilarious at a dog park though not the most social dog in the world as are most I.G.’s (italian greyhounds), usually hiding under our legs or one time peeing on an unsuspecting dog owner’s bag resting on the ground. Serves them right.
He also had a previous life that most people much less dogs would dream of; touring the continent with his dad’s band, jumping in on many interviews and promotional material. Patti Smith was a fan of his, the dog is a legend ’nuff said. But, he saved his love for few and I was honored to be one at a moment in time. My most-favourite thing was when he would wait across the street while I’d pop into a store, I’d walk out at the sight of him dragging his dad through traffic, seemingly desperate to get to me. It warmed my heart every time he did that. Everything he did humored me, his was a weird fixation with boats crossing the river outside the apartment’s high-rise windows, he’d ravage his bed in anger at the sight of them daring to encroach on his territory.
He witnessed laughter, love, anger and sadness. He comforted me crying alone on the couch when everything was falling apart. He became mine as much as he was his. I remember the last time I saw him, I was sneaking out of the apartment at 5am, shattered because I was forcing myself to leave a man I still loved, even if only for my own sanity. The little Italian was following me, nipping at my ankles, floppy ears up in concern. He watched me walk out and I knew I’d never see him again, I think my heart fell away right then.
When the dust settled and i felt virtually bankrupt from that massive emotional investment, i reminded myself of one tiny asset gained from the loss. It was a true love i found on my own, a love who loved me back without pretense and expectation, which is all anyone wants really.