Last week while the fair was going on here, Stella and I took a stroll down the midway a number of times. As I mentioned before, it was almost like she never left there. She can dive under a bally cloth and come out with what's left of a chicken-on-a-stick like it was put there for her. Anyway, we were just out there by ourselves one day, it was early in the day and an old friend in a golf cart came riding by. At first he waved, then he spotted her and turned back in our direction. He studied her for a couple of seconds and said, "Is that Billy Winn's puppy?" I confirmed his suspicion, happy there was someone left who might recognize her. Turns out, Ritchie had fallen for Stella much the same way I did. He'd spent a large part of his summer last year bringing her rawhide chews and little stuffed animals from his joints.
"Hey girl," he said,"you remember me?"
They greeted each other and although both of us wanted her to remember, it was impossible to tell if she actually did or not. He said the first time he saw her she bolted out from under the truck barking like she was the resident guard dog and that eventually he visited her enough times that she got to know his golf cart. He said that when they left Nashville last year and got to Louisiana, he noticed her missing and went looking for Billy fearful that he'd lost her somewhere along the way. Billy told him that she stayed in Nashville with me and despite the fact that he was crazy about her, it's doubtful that he'd thought about her since; until he spotted her on the midway a year later, at the Tennessee State Fair.