Holidays are certainly interesting. You hear from and are visited by your family and you need to be able to deal happily and quietly with them. And this year my family had to look past who was missing in the celebration.
But I am by nature a bit of a loner. I’m happier at home with my dogs, than going out to visit.
I think we are all this way just a bit. And unfortunately the one person who was the central cog/linchpin for us was my Mother. I say that sadly because she left us a year and a half ago. She knew all our foibles, our preferences and our dislikes. She knew what to say when we ran to her with skinned knees as children or money problems as adults.
My dad has never been one of those touchy-feeley sorts. He grew up in the 30s and 40s when men were too busy making money for the family to really be a part of the family. It was always up to the wives to pull everything together and keep the cookies baking and the meat roasting. And his career in the Air Force kept our Dad often away for a day, a week and sometimes even a year’s deployment.It was her wisdom and determination that held us together. So even now, there is an unmistakable hole in the center of the family when we get together proving once again that though the husband may be the head of the family, the wife and mother are the heart.
So, if you’re one of the lucky ones who, on a holiday trip home, walk into a bright, warm kitchen filled with love, laughter and the wonderful smells of turkey, ham or delivered Chinese Food give that woman (or man for that matter) a big hug, a loudy smacky kiss and spin them around while laughing together. Because a house without a wife is only a building with a lonely husband inside.
I write a great deal about dogs. They usually hanging around in both my fan fiction and in my novels. I have even been known to write poems and articles about dogs. They color my view of the world and society. So when you find one in my writing, don’t be surprised.
I determined that for you to understand where my characters come from, you should know a little about me and my dogs. You can skip this and catch up later, but if you hear barking in the background, look for a wagging tail to show up.
A few days ago, I wrote about my Pits. They were precious dogs, rare and irreplaceable, but I know wherein my heart lives.
The picture here is myself in childhood with our Rat Terriers. The two in my arms are Sissy (prick eared) and Spotty (tip-eared). The one next to us is Tiger, these are all offspring from Mitsey, the one in the back from different litters. These were dogs of my childhood, my companions in exploration and my guardians in my follys. Tiger was mortally injured by a car, Spot died of a heart attack, but Mitsey lived for about 18 years and Sissy well into her 20s.
When my husband took work as a fishing guide on Falcon Lake after his retirement from the USAF, I determined I needed a dog. We had previously decided that we wanted a long-lived breed, either a terrier or a dachshund. Well he was not there and I was so when I found a Jack Russell Terrier at a flea market I immediately brought her home. Her great and enthusiastic speed earned her the name Racer or Race. She was my darling and protector while hubby was gone. When I suffered a broken ankle she protected me from Pizza delivery men, postmen, my mother and mice.
Race also took on an orphan Pit Bull puppy to raise as her own. She loved that baby beyond all expectation. As a humorous none, one of the neighbors complained that my ‘vicious’ Pit Bull would kill my cute little white dog. Later, she apologized when she evidently saw Race ‘savagely attacking’ my other dog. Of course, no blood was ever spilt so when i explained their relationship the lady was more comfortable when she heard the play. In fact, the only blood let on the ground was that of possums, snakes, squirrels, some feral cats and unfortunately a 5 foot king snake.
When Bonny died unexpectedly, Race had a nervous breakdown and a possible stroke. We tried to get another terrier puppy but I swear I couldn’t find one. Finally, I heard of a wonderful organization called Russell Rescue. http://www.russellrescue.com/ Two very nice ladies, sisters Sandra and Robyn, are the heart and soul of this organization. I was advised to get a male and an adult who wouldn’t bother Race too much but would be company to her. So we got Abbott.
Little Abbott is an interesting dog. He was very respectful of the aging lady Race. She was only 13 but she had never recovered from the loss of Bonny. Mostly blind now, she didn’t really like him, but she accepted him and he was more or less her seeing eye dog. But they were very different. She’d been raised by us from a puppy. Abbott was 2 or 3 years old already and had suffered abuse at the hands of a man. It took he and my husband a while to declare a truce, but they did, and finally became fast friends.
The best way I can describe the two dogs relationship came about from the final squirrel hunt.I was lucky enough to witness it from the kitchen window so I assure you it is true. Since Race had gone blind, she didn’t hunt the squirrels any more. Abbott didn’t really know how. He could handle mice but not squirrels who were almost as big as him. Well, one day a huge male squirrel came to earth and was generally ignoring my two terriers who were asleep on the porch. Abbott saw him took a run at him and somehow actually managed to grab the squirrel by the tail. The squirrel, outraged, turned on him and bit Abbott on the foot, causing him to squeal. Before I could get to the door, Race leaped up from her chaise lounge and ran towards the combatants. She couldn’t see the squirrel, but I guess she could see the white form of Abbott. By the time I got outside, Race had shown Abbott how it is done. The huge squirrel was at least a foot and a half long with tail and was fighting so never saw her coming. Race grabbed it and slung it in true terrier style. Then she carried it around the yard, proud of her success and basking in her glory. I took Abbott inside to give him first aide for the bitten paw. Then I took a hot dog out to trade Race for the squirrel.
Race made it to 15 years. A decent enough age, but far short of what we had hoped for her. I know the difficulty she had with Bonny’s loss cost her several years. She suffered a grand mal seizure and we let her go while holding her in our arms. I brought her home and buried her in the back, with Abbott in attendance. When I put the stone down on her grave, he lifted his leg on it. No one would bother her sleep, by his signature and pledge.
end of part 1. to be continued.
I didn’t mean to disappear from the world but my life has been complicated this month.
My dear Mother passed from us to peace and pain free on the 31 of Aug. It was expected but we had hoped for a miracle. I guess the Great Spirit needed her to help him. She was 83. The funeral was the eighth with family coming in some distance to attend. It was a good gathering. More a celebration than an sad day. The following week was a bit hard, wanting to pick up a phone and call her. Seeing her gifts around us. But I realize that she is not here but has gone through the light. She is no doubt surrounded by our relatives and her beloved pets.
Then came some good news. My Novel is now live on Amazon.com, Its finally here!
The Homestead by Debi Cole
DOGS, HORSES AND COWS OH MY!
The unexpected inheritance of the old family farm takes Katie Brieten, a disabled woman Marine, and her little Jack Russell Terrier to a place of healing and discovery.. Her renovation of her Grandparent’s ramshackle home and property give her a new reason for living after the loss of her fiance and crippling injuries from Iraq. Then the discovery of a fifty year old murder mystery takes her into the dark side of a small south Texas town and puts at risk what she loves dearest and all that she’s accomplished.
The book is available from Amazon.com, Apple Bookstore, Barnes&Nobles, Google Play and Kobo in ebook (Kindle and Nook) form for $2.99
It is also coming out in paperback through CreateSpace.com and Amazon.com for $14.99.
That same day, I went to the doctor and discovered that I have two broken toes. This results in my wearing a ‘boot’ on the affected foot or 3 wks. Somehow it just ruined my rush.
Luckily, most of the work I need to do on the book deals is from the house and I really have no hard need to be running around. So, I’ll try to take the good with the sad and the depressing. It will all work out, just not the way I was expecting.
See you soon. May you have just enough rain for the flower to grow, and just enough sun to enjoy them.
I actually found this on Facebook from the Good Vet and Pet’s Guide.
When I lose a pet to the Rainbow Bridge, I am one of those crazy people who wants to fill the hole they left, not a replacement, but another soul to bless me. Here is the best way to explain it. You know your pet wouldn’t want you to be sad. Their whole lives were about making you happy. So now you have a chance to save some other darling and to let yourself laugh again. I believe that this is A Dog’s Last Will and Testament.
A dogs last will and testament …
Before humans die, they write their last will and testament, giving their home and all they have to those they leave behind. If, with my paws, I could do the same, this is what I’d ask…
To a poor and lonely stray, I’d give my happy home; my bowl and cozy bed, soft pillow and all my toys; the lap, which I loved so much; the hand that stroked my fur; and the sweet voice that spoke my name.
I’d will to the sad, scared, shelter dog the place I had in my human’s loving heart, of which there seemed no bounds.
So, when I die, please do not say, “I will never have a pet again, for the loss and the pain is more than I can stand.”
Instead, go find an unloved dog, one whose life has held no joy or hope, and give my place to him.
This is the only thing I can give…
The love I left behind.
– Author Unknown