We said goodbye to our girl yesterday. She made it to her sweet 16, but didn't last much beyond that.
In birthdays past she chomped on homemade peanut butter dog cookies
and homemade Pupcakes
She was a traveling dog from her early days and quickly adapted to long drives.
She made several trips to Iowa and was a good little hotel guest. She traveled to the Bay Area in California and enjoyed a stop in Las Vegas on the way home. She went to her first (and only) funeral in Peoria, Illinois and she loved downtown Chicago and the Omni Hotel and the North Shore. On little "staycations" in Denver she was an honored guest at the Hotel Monaco (a blackboard in the lobby welcomed her) and she was a favorite at "Second Home" bar in the JW Marriott in Cherry Creek North.
She loved her Grandma
And visited Grandpa when she could.
Her neck would get tired - from holding up her big heavy brain - when she was "driving" (such a back seat driver) so we instinctively took turns helping her out.
And she was always happiest when we were on our way home.
She liked the mountains a lot.
And she liked being near the water
But not so much in the water.
And bridges - particularly swinging bridges umm... nope.
She loved the park and knew every inch of our favorite trails.
She loved her Aunt Carolyn and Uncle Dick's Iowa farm because she could run wild and free off-leash.
She wasn't a fan of cold and snow ~ probably because I dressed her in warm coats. I told her she was a fashionista. Her Dad told her she looked ridiculous.
Her Aunt Christine (who she loved very much - and she showed this love by snarling at Christine every chance she got) gave her winter boots to protect her little toes. She hated them.
It may have been why she snarled at her.
She didn't like the rain much either.
She was half basenji and half blue heeler. That translates to a feisty, whip-smart dog who sheds (basenjies don't shed), barks (basenjies don't bark) and yodels (basenjies do yodel).
She liked the holidays and thought every present was for her.
And she loved her Grandpa and Gram - who were like second parents to her.
She tolerated her feline sister
And even liked her sometimes...
From the very start, she loved her Dad most of all.
And it was a love affair that would last her whole life.
She was funny
and full of surprises.
She was curious
and sniffed every blade of grass.
She was my every morning walking partner, my supportive studio mate, my sweet, sweet girl, my buddy. On September 11, 2001 while I sobbed watching the World Trade Center Towers fall, she sat right next to my feet all day to comfort me. She didn't leave my side. Every day after Dad took her out for her morning tinkle she would bound up the stairs to my studio for her morning treat. The box sits next to my desk still. I don't want to move it. If I leave it maybe it means it didn't really happen. If I leave her bed in my studio maybe I'll wake up and this was all just a really bad dream.
She and I spent just about every day of her life together. We understood each other and loved each other. Very much. Saying goodbye to her is one of the hardest things I've ever had to do in my life. I miss her. I will always miss her.
The world is a little colder today and there are big holes in our hearts. She took a piece of both of ours with her... Whatever will we do without our girl?
I like to think that she is wandering in lovely meadows chasing after bunnies and squirrels ~ free of pain and full of joy.
I love you, Boo. Until we meet again...