Hands, Sweat and Dimples

As mentioned in a prior blog, my husband and I and our son and family spent nearly a week in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Our granddaughter, now six, is pure delight and of course, we would say that – she’s our granddaughter. That age is energy loaded, as if her batteries are super charged. A beautiful child with olive skin, shiny blacker than black long hair like her mother’s, and brown eyes that open wide for added expression when she speaks of a subject she’s intent about. Her left cheek has a long dimple, just like her father’s and just below the right corner of her mouth is a tiny one, an indentation. The two together embellish her smile and laughter. I can’t see them enough.

She also passionately loves dogs, just like me. She’s my true companion. In Steamboat, I’m not sure if people have dogs, or dogs have people. They’re everywhere with their owners. On the streets, outdoor patios, hikes, in front of shopping stores, panting happily and eyeing the next child that just might want to stroke their heads or scratch their bellies a time or two. My granddaughter willingly does so. She’s learned to ask, “Can I pet your dog?” Ninety-nine percent of the time, the owner smiles and replies, “Sure, he’s friendly.” She does so as her dimples show and she emits a sweet “a-a-a-a-h” sound, as if the dog is the most precious one she’s pet yet. She follows it by looking up at the owner, “He’s so cute…” a phrase gifted to each and every dog she meets. I sigh with happiness. She absolutely has my genes when it comes to dogs.

One afternoon, later in the week, it was fairly warm for the mountains. All of us  were in the cool at our condo and contemplating a nice nap. All but her. Naps and six-year-olds are oil and water. They don’t work. “Let’s go for a walk, just a short one,” I said, envying all the limp bodies sleeping on couches and beds. She hopped off the couch, put away her Nintendo, flashed her dimples and grabbed my hand. 

We had walked just a short distance when we ran upon a young man fixing his bicycle in front of his apartment. I wanted to find a small park, so stopped and asked if he knew of one. His patio door was open and inside stood a caramel and white Australian shepherd watching us, his tail wagging in anticipation. My granddaughter immediately spotted him. “A-a-a-ah,” she said as the owner called him outside. Stroking his soft fur, she told the owner, “Oh, he’s so cute!” The shepherd then ran to her, licked her hand, then found a tree stick to toss, emitting giggles from her. “Here, let me google it. I think there’s a park close,” he said. He pointed down the street. “Just half a mile,” he said, smiling. Half-mile! She wanted eagerly to go. I decided we could do it.

The entire journey to the park, and it was plenty warm, she grabbed my hand, ungrasping it only to say, “My hand’s sweaty” and wiped it on her shorts. Immediately taking my hand once more, we talked of all the dogs she’d seen that day, discovered dandelions in bloom and stood in a tree’s shade a little while to cool off. It was endearing the way she held my hand the entire way and I wondered why I hadn’t done the same with my own children.

She never let go of my hand. For the entire half-mile. I wanted to say, “a-a-a-ah.” Instead, I brushed wisps of damp hair off her face and smiled at her dimpled face, my heart warmer than the heat we were experiencing.  

4 thoughts on “Hands, Sweat and Dimples

  1. It is clear your love for granddaughter and the love of dogs you both share. Sweet!

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