A Drop of Golden Sun

The sidewalks of the Upper West Side make for great dog-watching. Grab a cup of coffee, camp out on a bench for a few minutes and you’ll see an amazing variety of furry pups pass by. Gigantic great danes, hand-bag sized yorkies, bounding vizslas, stately bulldogs, vigilant terriers, and our golden girl: Maddie, the self-styled mayor of the block.

 All Images:  Laura Messersmith

All Images: Laura Messersmith

Maddie-pup’s daily activities break down something like this: 75% brainstorming blog ideas (read: sleeping), 8% warmly greeting every person & dog she meets, 7% soliciting snuggles, 5% monitoring Central Park’s squirrel population, 3% begging for Honey Nut Cheerios, and the remaining 2% mischievously pulling the stuffing out of her toys. Not a bad life, especially when the occasional Shake Shack french fry comes her way from a soft-hearted picnicker.

I’m surprised sometimes by how happy-go-lucky Maddie is, because her days weren’t always so comfortable. Three years ago she was found on streets of Dallas – she had no tags, no microchip, no collar and apparently no owner searching for her.  Blanche DuBois-style she had to rely on the kindness of strangers who, thankfully, delivered her into the care of a local rescue organization.

After we adopted her I realized that offering a home to a dog that needs one is a gift. It’s a gift to the dog, certainly, but Maddie’s presence has been a gift to our family too. She brings a bright spot into every day life and reminds me to enjoy the simple things.

So, I do. I enjoy her inquiring nose over the side of the bed in the morning, her playful prance when she knows it’s time to go for a walk, her soft ears (perfect for stroking.)  I enjoy the gift that is Maddie-pup. Just ask my Instagram feed.

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