I was at the dog park with Muppet and she was having her usual blissful time running around with the other dogs. The snow has begun to melt creating a large muddy patch at the park, which of course tends to draw all the dogs. Muppets fur soaks its all up and she gets crazy dirty, loving every minute. This day she found a couple of puppies that she played so well with. Coco was a brown and white dog (I am terrible at remembering breeds) just a few months older than Muppet and about the same size. They romped happily giving chase and play biting.
Dog parks are friendly places. Conversation seems to flow easily between puppy parents.
“Which one is yours?”
“What’s his name?”
“Where do you get her groomed?”
We exchange advice on boots for the snow, where to get a cheap light up collar, where there is a do-it-yourself dog bathing station near by.
On this day, Coco’s mom and I struck up conversation. She seemed about 15 years older than me and very friendly. She spoke with an accent and I soon learned she was from Columbia. She told me how she met her husband, an American, while she was vacationing here and ended up moving here for him.
“Our puppies get along so well!” she said. “If you ever want, we have a fenced in yard and live down the street. You can come over with Muppet and they can play!”
She told me how she works, but her mother is at home with Coco during the day.
“but she doesn’t speak English,” she warned.
“Esta bien. Hablo espanol!”
Her eyes widened and she smiled! “That’s great! She would love you! Even if you speak just a little Spanish.” She wanted to know what I did and I explained I was a midwife (“una partera o comodroma” I said when she wasn’t familiar with the English word. “pero en la hospital,” explaining that here midwives practice a little differently). I joked about how my obstetrical and gyn spanish was much better than general conversational Spanish, so hopefully her mother wouldn’t mind if I talked about vaginas! She laughed.
I left the dog park with her name and number to later arrange a puppy playdate. I thought, is this what parents with living children do? Would I be making similar playdates for Mabel, had she lived? Or not because she would have been sick?