“My little dog – a heartbeat at my feet.” – Edith Wharton
Today is the anniversary of my arriving in Chappaqua to live. That was twelve years ago and who knew what an adventure it would be with Ronni. In the next few weeks I will be writing about the highlights of my life in Chappaqua. Stay tuned!
Here is the essay Ronni wrote in Inside Chappaqua Magazine in November 2018.
A Dog to Love: Maggie Mae
I never thought I could love a dog as much as I love my Maggie Mae. I was attracted to her outgoing personality and knew right away Maggie Mae was mine. But maybe it was the other way around and she chose me. She was three months old and weighed three pounds when she came to live with me nearly eleven years ago.
I can’t imagine my life without Maggie Mae. She is, without a doubt, my best friend and I suspect my biggest fan. She will follow me anywhere, is totally devoted to me—even whenI reprimand her. Maggie Mae loves me unconditionally. She’s thejoyof my life.
As a perennial single person, I have lived alone for most of my adult life, and it is easy for a single person to become self-indulgent.Having to think about the well-being and care of another were welcome changes for me. And Maggie Mae keeps me active and gets me out of the house in all kinds of weather. The company of my four- legged friend has enriched my life beyond compare. Thanks to Maggie Mae’s outgoing personality, I feel so much more settled having met more people in my neighborhood and many more shopkeepers on our strolls into downtown Chappaqua.
I always say to her, “You’re the best girl I know,” and am rewarded with a kiss.
When they say dogs are man’s best friend they aren’t kidding. When a fly is buzzing around the house, she’s right there to alert me and to guard me. She alerts me when I accidentally have left the front door ajar and if there is something in the wrong place. And then there is the Maggie Mae neighborhood watchdog. She can spot a car blocks away and frequently knows who is in it.
I never loved an animal the way I love her. She’s a wonderful companion, and she makes me laugh. She can be sound asleep, but if the phone rings and I answer she is by my side in a minute with a toy so I will play with her.
As many of you readers know she is very a “personable” and friendly dog and well known by merchants in town. I always say she has very good “self-esteem” the way she carries herself and walks through he town like she owns it. I could not have been more proud when Sophie Mendelson included her in the Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival mural in the center of town.
Why am I so grateful for Maggie Mae in my life? She keeps me healthy. No matter what the weather I am outside with Maggie Mae at least three times a day. We take long walks that are good for both of us, physically and for my mental health. I often get a lot of good ideas on our walks, including her Maggie Mae Pup Reporter column that many of you read in this magazine for years. I’m also grateful because she has made my life more interesting. I learned to write from a dog’s point of view.
Maggie Mae loves to ride in the car and is a great travelling companion who is always happy with whatever we do. She has been a regular guest at The Red Lion Inn since she was a puppy with many fans in Stockbridge and the Berkshires.
As much as Maggie Mae loves to snuggle up next to me especially when I am doing something else, like me, she is very independent she likes to be alone. She’ll go in her crate, on her bed or find a square of sunlight on the carpet just to chill.
My heart is bigger than I ever thought, and my love for Maggie Mae is matched by my gratitude by having her in my life. I love her little kisses, how she curls up at my feet to give me a hug. How she puts her head under my hand so I can pet her. I love her wagging tail and how she waits for me at the door.
So little can make her happy and that is a lesson we can all learn.
And as I’m writing this she came up to me, leaned in, pushed my pad and pen away, and climbed on my lap. I can’t imagine my life without Maggie Mae. She’s my girl and I love her so.
Ronni Diamondstein, is a Chappaqua based freelance writer, PR consultant, award-winning photographer and Chappaqua Library Board Trustee.
© 2020 Ronni Diamondstein, All Rights Reserved