I saw her pranced into the house, disheveled from the drugs she took on the plane from Maryland to Oakland. She was Virginia’s Boston Terrier, a rescue that was about to be put to sleep when Virginia decided to keep her. Chiquita, the toy poodle who was the queen of the house, was not used to having another girl taking the attention from her. Chiquita tolerates her, but would growl when I played with Leeza, or when Leeza gave me slobbery kisses. I’ve never heard her bark - and for awhile I thought she was mute. She had little sense of personal boundaries, planting her petite ass onto my face when I sleep. She was a gentle soul, who would climb up on the couch next to me and plant her face on my lap while we watch the telly. Virginia would stare at Leeza and couldn’t remember who she was.
I was back in Singapore when Virginia passed.
I was in Oakland for the Labor Day weekend, and hasn’t seen Leeza or Chiquita in awhile. Leeza had lost her usual bubbly self, her eyesight had worsen as was her sense of hearing. She laid in her bed staring at the wall all day, as though afraid of stepping out of her comfort zone. We went to the park across the street on Labor Day. She was too tired to walk and laid on the grass staring into darkness. Later that night, she gave me a kiss before I left for Los Angeles.