I leaned forward and Schatzie gave me kisses while the lady beamed. The sales clerk raised one eyebrow while the customer and I exchanged pleasantries. With a final pat on the puppy’s head, we left the store as twilight deepened, our purchases stashed in the Mozart tote bag that swung from Elizabeth’s arm.
As we walked back to the hotel, Elizabeth shifted closer to my side to allow a man and his dog to pass. The dog, large, brown and nondescript, brushed by, its tail moving back and forth in great, slow sweeps. Elizabeth laughed as it thumped her. Holding my arm, her body molded to mine, we walked with the same rhythm, our heels hitting the cobblestones in unison.
And the dog, his shaggy tail a metronome for the ageless heartbeat of Mozart’s city, pattered ahead until the crowds closed behind him.