Blackie had come into the family before I was born, while my parents were still living in Brooklyn. Soon after my folks moved to the Bronx, Blackie ran away. My parents combed the neighborhood looking for her and put signs up on lampposts, but to no avail. A week later, a former Brooklyn neighbor called my mother and told her that Blackie was sitting on the kitchen floor in the old, still empty Brooklyn apartment, whimpering. My father wanted to leave her there, but Mom made him drive to Brooklyn to bring her back.