I am a small business owner. I don’t claim for much, just to achieve the satisfaction and expectations of my clients, the majority of whom I am honoured to call my friend. If I am able to unlock my door at seven and work until six, and if I can have a little cutlet at lunch time and a quarter of a chicken for supper, and if I can go to sleep knowing that my debts are small and my obligations are not onerous, then truly I am a happy man.
I want for little, but I do think now that I need a companion of some kind. I intensely dislike felines of any kind, but a puppy I could love. I know that at my age both the dog and I would, at the same time, become old and infirm together. I admit that I take pleasure in the idea of being old and unwell together, with me in a wheelchair perhaps, or suffering from gross obesity and diabetes, while the dog beside me has arthritic joints and a tendency to blindness, and requires that all of his food be of some expensive kind or another. It is not unreasonable, I believe, to wish to be sick with another living being, and I think that there is a certain special kind of bond that can only exist between two creatures who share the slow decline together, knowing that there is no light at the end of the tunnel, and that each day is likely to be the best remaining day in this life, as subsequent days, we can be sure, will be much worse.
But as I walk in the afternoon, alone except for the constant hellos from customers and friends, I think that I could live another day on my own, that the puppy I wish to die alongside has likely not yet been born, and that I have as yet no real desire to share my cutlet bone with anyone, as the meat from my local butcher, a certain Herr Grimmel, is too juicy to give up.
* * *
The above piece of writing comprises part of my fragments project, some of which are available on this website. I intend to add new fragments piecemeal, not in any particular order, and as the occasion take me.