I'm pretty sure I gave you a hard time when we first met. Like the time when
I left a trail of muddy prints on your cream couch that still smells like new
leather, or the time when your beautiful plush carpet became my latest chew toy.
Or how about the many times I secretly ran off and you had to lift abandoned cardboards
and walk into dark dirty alleys while calling my name.
Before meeting you, I was always hungry. I spent my days looking for scraps of food. I would wonder
around the streets, usually late at night when no one would try to shoo me away to the garbage
dump. It was like a treasure trove for beggers. Stale bread and apple cores with bits of apples still
clinging to it. If I was lucky, I would even find a box of Chinese takeaway leftovers.
There was a secret spot at the park where I sometimes go to. There, I could watch others like me
get pampered. Unlike me, they get to be picked up and nuzzled. They run around fetching balls, and
then get praised and a pat on the head for it. Unlike me, they always looked absolutely immaculate,
spotless and clean.
Then one day, one of the pampered ones accidently left her bowl behind. I held it between
my teeth and ran off with it straight away. To my delight, there was still some food left in the bowl.
The bowl was silver and had some small dents around it, but it was the only possession I had and I loved it.
When you came along, you turned my world around. You gave me a soft fluffy bed to lolled around in,
bought me orange, red and green balls to fetch. You would say 'Good boy!' when I got the ball and
pat me on my head. We watch TV together on the couch every night. I still don't understand what the
moving animations are doing in that flat screen, but I love how you would rest your hand on my head.
You must have wondered many times why I kept running back to the my secret spot at the park even
when you had given me such a comfortable and loving home. The truth is, I missed the silver bowl
that I had learnt to call my own. It was the only nice thing I had before life with you. So I would run
back just to make sure the bowl was still there, and you would come after me every time, take me
back home and love me the same way.
But after yesterday, I no longer have to run away any longer. Like any typical day, you whistled, signalling that
it was time for my breakfast. I ran leaping and bounding towards the kitchen. You placed a bowl
in front of me. But instead of the plastic orange bowl you usually use, there in front of me was the familiar
silver bowl, small dents and all, placed on the floor. But what was different about it was there on the bowl,
was my name 'Noodle' engraved on it in delicate writing.
Now I no longer have to call the bowl my own, it is my own.
Your loyal loving dog,