When my daughter Allaire was a little girl, any time she saw two animals of any kind together – whether in a picture book, or out in the real world – she’d name them Ojo and Moona. The first time she did it, I gave her a funny look and said, “Where did you come up with those names?” and sh just smiled and gave a shrug. For years, neighborhood cats, dogs, horses we’d pass on the rural Sonoma county roads would have the names Ojo and Moona bestowed upon them by our funny little girl, whose own nicknames include Allaire-bear, Schmucky puss, Schmuckarena, and finally The Mook.
Allaire and I have wanted a dog for a long time, but because of her dad’s allergies, we postponed it. When it became clear that the marriage was not going to make it (although the friendship will, thankfully), I put in an application to adopt a Kerry Blue Terrier from the Foundation. My sister has a Kerry Blue Terrier named Lily and we fell in love with her. I have always believed in destiny and now have one more proof of it, because in the final weeks of our time with my husband living at home with us, a little black miracle was on her way to the Bay Area and our application had drifted to the top of Eileen Andrade’s stack. This fortuitous event has brought immeasurable healing to both our family and this lovable, little creature.
There was some confusion about her identity when she arrived in her foster home. Originally billed as a three year old named Kerry Maid, a scan of her microchip revealed that she was named “Natasha in Blue” and was a little over a year old. Her foster mother Sheri decided to use the term of endearment Sweetie Pie, and so when we first met her, we called her that too. It fits her well. She is indeed a sweetie, so much so that my husband has abandoned all pretenses of allergies and gets on the floor to roughhouse and pet and be licked by this petite darling.
When she wakes up in the morning, she is a rocket ship headed for Mars, she is fireworks on the Fourth of July, she is Joy personified. She runs in huge, lopey circles around the house, leaping and kissing and circling. In the middle of the day, she exudes a more subdued gratitude. Thank you for coming home. Thank you for giving me a treat. Thank you for letting me run free. And at night she is my nappy girl, the pooped party guest, the toddler running on vapors. She plops down wherever I am. She rouses herself if I leave the room, and she follows me and plops down to nap there at my feet, even if I move off again moments later.
But as we are spending time with #111 Natasha in Blue – a.k.a Sweetie Pie – we all find ourselves calling her Moona. Dark, beautiful, one half complete until last Sunday. I think maybe we are the Ojo to this marvelous Moona.