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The Venus Touch
I arrive at the TTSPCA Tobago branch to pick up the puppy I’ve decided to adopt. She is a “Tobago Terrier” (aka “pothong”), about two-and-a-half months old, all white, with a few light brown dots, like markings on dice, on both of her ears. Her black nose is heart-shaped—a fitting symbol, since I’m naming her Venus, after the Roman Goddess of Love and Beauty.
Her gentle, warm temperament reminds me of Cindy, the golden Labrador Retriever I had received as a puppy on my first birthday. Cindy, a loyal canine companion until her death at the age of fourteen, would accompany me and my sisters every day to the primary school we attended close to home in Trinidad.
Fortunately we had a Principal who loved animals. At school, Cindy would mingle easily with children and teachers as “one of us”, sleep under our desks during class and join us at break and lunchtime in the playing field or sand pit. A gentle soul, she was loved by all.
Because it is a busy day for me, with a few errands to run, I take Venus along. It’s her first time in the car, but it feels as if she has always been there. She sits quietly in the passenger seat, often looking at me, sometimes gazing through the window, black nose twitching rapidly as it records the plethora of passing road smells.