I, too, had set out to be remembered. I had wanted to create something permanent in my life- some proof that everything in its way mattered, that working hard mattered, that feeling things mattered, that even sadness and loss mattered, because it was all part of something that would live on. But I had also come to recognize that not everything needs to be durable. the lesson we have yet to learn from dogs, that could sustain us, is that having no apprehension of the past or future is not limiting but liberating. Rin Tin Tin did not need to be remembered in order to be happy; for him, it was always enough to have that instant when the sun was soft, when the ball was tossed and caught, when the beloved rubber doll was squeaked. Such a moment was complete in itself, pure and sufficient.
He himself, he realized, had always been most abominably frightened, even at the height of his divine power, a frail god upon a rickety throne, afraid of opening letters, of making decisions, afraid of the instinctive knowledge in the eyes of mules, of the innocent eyes of good men, of the elastic nature of the passions, even of the devotion he had received from some men, and one woman, and dogs.
While everyone adjusted themselves and their packs, Donna sniffed curiously at Louie's nose. Her attitude suggested she might want to make friends with the giant dog; Lou couldn't resist the temptation. Once Donna lured Louie in, she slowly, cautiously, turned about to align her hooves with Louie's head. Perhaps she didn't like dogs. Perhaps she didn't want a rival for Monty's attentions. Perhaps she was merely an impish tarkus much like the Dane himself. Cody watched as the Dane failed to grasp the gravity of his predicament. At the last moment, Cody smacked Louie's hind end, scuttling the devious donkey's murderous trap.