I have been thinking a lot about the power of imperfection following the burst of sunshine that bolted into our home at the start of COVID in the form of a tiny silver bald poodle.
Archibald (see what we did there) does have clumps of fur, but also has bald stripes and is totally nude on his little ears, four feet and most of his back. He looked more like a bat from the Wuhan market when we first bought him home and whenever we walk him, we are stopped and asked by strangers, “What is wrong with him?”, “Does he have cancer?” and “Oh, what happened to it?”.
At first, we were offended because you have never met a dog with a bigger heart or larger sense of self. This dog rules the house with gusto and humour and energy. He is the most divine little creature you ever did meet, and he has enchanted us all with his bold ways.
He bounds from child to child and is the first living soul awake before 5am. He curls up in my daughter’s bed at night like a tiny toy and snuggles into her chest with what looks exactly like a big content smile on his tiny pointy face.
My daughter has never slept better since this beam of light came into our lives. I have bought hemp oil and kelp powder to try to help his bedraggled coat grow, but a wise poodle expert I know says the fur may just start flourishing when he hits adolescence. Perhaps it will, perhaps it will not. None of us mind, because Archie has reminded us all that having quirks makes you stand out in a good way.
But the thing is, Archie is a real test for me of people’s true level of social acceptance. I can see their heart straight away by the way they react to him. Archie’s baldness is also the reason my daughter begged for us to own him. That girl has always had the kindest of hearts.
One of my favourite shops on the Coast is Isabella’s Fine and Antique Jewellery Store in Noosa. The owner, Bec, has kindly encouraged my drooling for over a decade as usually I leave empty-handed but with a full heart and a long bucket list. Bec taught me expensive pearls cost a lot more than a baroque pearl and I have always loved the imperfect ones so much more. Baroque pearls are the exact opposite to traditional pearls, as each one is its own unique size and shape. Glorious nature at its best.
What is more beautiful than imperfect beach hair covered in sea salt that dries to a beautiful mess? And you cannot find something so sublimely lovely than a stack of old mismatched books or teacups. It’s the chips and cracks and weathering that give those things such character.
Perhaps we all need to keep this in mind when it comes to living creatures as well. So, if you see us at Buddina walking a blackish bundle of energy, please don’t ask us what is wrong with him. Archie is perfect the way he is.