I often joke with my husband that our dogs travel everywhere. The last time I mention this is just a few days ago – I had found a single, short hair in my bra. The reason I discovered it was because my boob was itchy.
The time before this was two weeks ago, when we were in Chicago and then San Francisco. My husband ran the Chicago marathon and I found stray hairs on my clothes.
When I vacuum, it takes me three times longer than it should. And I must vacuum weekly at the longest stretch, or risk the hair weaving itself permanently into the couch and the rug. Instead of a charcoal sofa, I’ll end up with a tan one.
Thankfully the dogs match the floorboards, and I can retain some sanity – only until the sun shines, exposing tumbleweeds all over the joint.
While I doggedly chafe the sofa with the vacuum’s nozzle, sweating my way through the task, our 12-year-old Beaglier stares at me. I’m sure he’s wondering what I’m doing. “Lucky you’re cute”, I say, “otherwise mummy will have to give you away.”
When he continues to stare at me with his big, brown eyes, my heart melts. That’s what they do. When you’re not watching, they creep into every chamber of your pumping organ, leave a bit of hair, and implant themselves into you forever.
I know when they are no longer, I’ll be grateful for every strand I discover in the nooks and crannies of our domain. Saudade will settle into my bones, and, like Lydia Davis, my husband and I will “have a wild hope – if only we collect enough of them, we will be able to put the dog[s] back together again.”