On being alone

Stringer the lab, asleep on the author around 6pm Sunday

I have spent the last week dogsitting my excellent nephew, Stringer. Stringer is the best labrador that ever there was. He belongs to my friends Ben and Sarah, who work at home from a big house in the hills and therefore have given Stringer a pretty fantastic life. When they are gone, he misses them. He consoles himself by loving me—usually by laying his big, soft head on whatever part of me has briefly stopped moving—and I console him with Dog Adventures. Every time I stand up, Stringer thinks we are going on a Dog Adventure. He follows me from room to room, and in this way I am never alone. Which is interesting, because I have not spoken to another human being in just over 36 hours.

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