When I’m lying on the floor, rubbing her belly, Vera never wonders:
"What exactly is she after?"
When I put chicken in the slow cooker for her every day she doesn’t ask herself:
“But what does she expect in return?"
There is no suspicion, no bartering, no keeping score, no feeling beholden to someone.
She doesn't worry: "What does this woman want from me?"
When I drive a little further to take her to a quieter beach with more seagulls to chase she just drops a wonky grin at my feet as she comes skidding back in a wave of wet sand. The magic of dogs-and-humans-and-humans-and-dogs isn't that they give us unconditional love, with their soft looks and consoling ways, it is that they know how to take it - despite everything.