I think we might have an angel here among us.
Yes, I know it is that time of year when Heavenly Hosts appear bearing tidings of great joy. It is nothing as dramatic as that but of great impact none the less.
We live next door to an elderly gentleman who is quite friendly and yes, a bit odd, but kind hearted. He is in his seventies and through the occasional chat in the hallway we know he is an only child.
So, on New Year’s Day when I saw him in the lobby after walking Buddy, we exchanged our usual “hello” and “Happy New Year!” As I turned to go to the elevator, he blurted out, “My mom died last night.”
He was seated on a bench and looking a bit more disheveled than usual. He told me he had been up all night. So I turned around and sat down next to him.
Buddy jumped up between us.
Buddy is usually a friendly dog, but not one to snuggle up with strangers. He must have had some kind of doggy-sense of his sadness because he leaned up tight against him as close as he could possibly get, and then flipped over on his back for a belly rub. We sat there, the three of us, for awhile, wordless, while my neighbor petted Buddy.
I saw my neighbor again yesterday and asked him how he was doing. He said he was doing better, and then told me that when Buddy snuggled with him in the lobby, it was a tremendous comfort to him. He said that there must be something to all of those studies that show that dogs can make people feel better and that Buddy is a “little angel.”
I think he just might be right.