Wednesday, December 7, 2016


I have kept all Duncan's toys, regardless of their condition. All of them reside in the small bureau where we keep his brushes and combs, the nail trimmers, the countless tennis and golf balls we've collected over the years, everything. Regardless of their condition, they are all there, from his Baby to his Beaker, his Bugsy and Bear, his Berry and Bobo, the Blue Buddha, his Bac-O (a pink fuzzy pig), Bah-Bah, Bash (his hammerhead shark), Bubbles (the bright orange catfish he never really took to) all of them, most of whom have now moved into a nameless haze of not-quite-memory. 

Tonight, after playing in the snow, after cuddling for a bit on the bed and playing with his Buzz (a now-wingless green dragonfly) and his Beluga (a green and orange salmon), I decided to pull out all the toys and toss them on the bed around Roo. I expected great rejoicing and frantic playing as many of them (mostly the legless or headless ones, the ones that are little more than scraps of fur or remnants of paws) haven't seen the light of day in well over a decade.

Instead I received a sort of stunned silence, the kind I remember from the moment I stepped foot inside the bar where my twenty-year high school reunion was held. It was a room filled people I remembered, many I didn't, faces and names that hadn't crossed my mind since the end of the 80s. It was overwhelming, exhilarating, and somewhat sad.

Dunc didn't know what to do. He just laid there and stared at them, occasionally leaning forward to sniff at them or nudge them with his nose. It was the first time they'd been assembled in a single place (not scattered among the three drawers of the bureau where they normally reside). I imagined he didn't know what to make of all those bits of his past, spanning his puppy days all the way to his most recent birthday when Beluga joined the family. It must've been awkward seeing Bunny cavorting with the Blue Buddha. That would've been like seeing Chris Krai, my childhood friend from my hardcore nerd days sitting at a table with the people I work with.

But mostly he just looked sad and as my brain tried to make sense of it, and my heart began reading things into it that it shouldn't, I decided we'd both had enough, scooped them up and put them all away.

As my friend April once said, "Sometimes it's best to just leave a good memory alone."


Miguel said...

This is wonderful!

How Sam Sees It said...


Monty, Harlow, and Ramble

Jyoti said...

That face! Too much to take in at once.

Henry said...

Ah! Such a cute picture! Great post, thank you for sharing :)
Take care,