gene candeloro
3 min readSep 17, 2020
Photo by Erik-Jan Leusink on Unsplash


The sign at the side of the road said “FOR SALE PUPPIES” in a hardly readable script. We had been talking about getting another puppy to replace our irreplaceable little Boston Terrier, Buddy. We thought the kids should have a puppy.

As I pulled into the yard I saw a well-kept two-story home with beautiful flowers and an incredibly huge garden. No one was around. No one greeted me. I climbed the steps to the home and knocked on the door. No one answered.

I decided to check out the barn. In there I found a short, stocky lady dressed all in black with grey hair in a bun with hairpins randomly holding it together. She was kneeling in the hay, holding a goat, and sobbing. I was unsure of what to do. As I approached her she acted as if she and I have been lifelong friends. She said, “Antonio is dying. What am I going to do?” I asked if he was a pet goat, she said “no”.

“He was my husband’s favorite. My husband died last month. Fell over dead right in his garden. What am I going to do?” My heart broke. “I need to keep him alive for him. He will be so disappointed.”

I could tell immediately she was Italian because she reminded me of every aunt I had grown up with as surrogate mothers. Wonderful women. I asked if Antonio was old. She said yes, 20 years, which



gene candeloro

Writer, photog., wanderer. Hopeful romantic. Lover of all things dogs. I write about ordinary people. Follow my Relentless Pursuit. Medium Noteworthy Writer.