Saturday, November 12, 2011

Panchito preciosito

me and my brother
Not so long ago I got this idea to have my chart read. I'm of mixed emotions about this -- on the one hand, it's funny to live here and not have had it done, since it's the sort of thing one hears mentioned in normal, everyday conversation fairly regularly (I know, a function of my particular environment); on the other, while I am sure there is something to be gained from it even if it’s just blog-fodder, I still maintain a dose of skepticism. To know what was happening in the universe at the precise moment of my entry will certainly be interesting, and not at all like the time I went to the Dickens Fair and had my palm read. It will tell me things about myself that could be very helpful.  Regardless, I’m just a little reticent. But still curious.

To have your chart done, you need to know your exact time of birth. Which meant that I had to send my parents digging, since all those years later they couldn't remember what time of day I was born. Which meant my father had to carry to ladder up to the second floor, climb up into the storage space above the closet in the tv room, bring down box after box of family photos and memorabilia, searching for the one baby photo, taken minutes after birth, that includes the details that the birth certificate omits.

So now we know that I was born at 2:18pm, 6 lbs 6 oz, 17 1/2 inches.

While you're digging around in the photos, I asked my mother, could you see if you have any photos of Pancho? Since losing Jasper in March, I'd often thought about Panchito, my first dog, the brother my parents got me when pregnant with me. For four years it was just the two of us, no little sisters, just me and gentle and sweet Pancho who knew all of his commands in Spanish. I loved him so much, speaking long rolling endearments for him, Panchito preciosito, amorcito, that still roll through my memory when I see a certain kind of dog or even when murmuring to Mr Burns. Panchito disappointed me only once and not for long, when he refused to perform even one trick years later when we put on a circus on the Kanights' deck on Liberty Street. I left the stage, head down, in time for the Three Ms to start their act, surprised and disappointed. But for the rest, for long childhood years, he was the very model of a good dog, a perfect brother: gentle, sweet, loving.

It's amazing that when I finally found pictures of him, after hours of digging through those same boxes at my parents, he is so much smaller than I remember. And brindle! I remembered the warmth of his brown coat, but brindle? I didn’t know it. But those eyes, those I knew so well: always so warm, looking at me with so much tenderness. It's such a pleasure to see him again, to add the image, refreshed, to the load of sensory memory I carry around inside.

wow, Sari, my mother: gorgeous! but i only have eyes for panchito
later, older: so cute!
I still haven’t had my chart done, even though the exact time of birth went off, by email, to the astrologer in question. I may still do it, but really looking at Panchito, holding the treasure of these photos in my hands, I feel like I already know everything I need to about how the circumstances of my birth made me who I am and how the path will unfold.

Ay, perrito preciosito: so much love to you, even now.


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