Buddy—A Series Of Adventures–The Power of Purple

The moment I cracked the front door open, I could feel the energy. A pent up, turbulent sort of air seemingly connected to the disarray of the house in general.  Bedding on the living room floor.   Dog toys and bones scattered everywhere. The smell of dog and all its potential meanings. Remnants of chaos, the flurry of packing and dashing out the door.

We are back home. I step into the house, immediately drawn to the couch.  You are not on the couch, waiting for me.  I catch my breath, trying not to cry. I bend over to unleash the girls.  Even being sick, they clamor through the doorway, sliding across the hardwood floor, grabbing at toys along the way, heading to the back door, eager to get out and check for chippers.  I slowly move through the living rooms’ maze of dog debris, looking back at that couch.  Looking down at where the futon was.  Noticing everywhere that you now…. aren’t.

Is this just a dream? Is this maybe, just maybe, not really happening?

I can’t do this.

I pull my arms around my chest in a big hug, and stand in the doorway to the kitchen. Your water bowl is there across the room.  More bones and toys are scattered across the floor.  It’s time to accept that you are still basically everywhere, yet, you are not in the kitchen, spinning wild circles of excitement at the idea of ‘dinners’, or going for a walk, or going to get that chipper.

Oh hell, I can’t do this. I just can’t.

I open the back door and the girls burst outside. I stand in the kitchen and listen.  Listen for the slightest sound of you.  Nothing.

Angel is poking her head through the dog door, spying at me from outside.  Towards the end, you couldn’t manage getting through that dog door, so I would prop the entire screen door open for us all. And even then, you would lay down on the step before coming into the house, lay down in the back doorway before going outside. I stand in the back doorway, looking down at your food bin.  It’s half full.  Suddenly I am in a frenzy of pulling treat containers and dog necessities and miscellaneous “stuff” off of the shelves in the back doorway.  Dog toys come tumbling down from the upper shelves.  Among them, your very special soft purple toy.  Gasping for a breath, I bend over and pick it up from the floor clutching it hard to hold back the tears.

Remember when I gave you this purple toy? You had been stealing the girls soft toys and eating them.  Bad, bad boy.  Two trips in 4 months to the vet with tummy issues, you were developing a very expensive, bad and dangerous behavior.  So I thought maybe if you had your very own toy, you’d leave theirs alone.  You carried this goofy purple thing everywhere for a few weeks.  Slept with it, sat with it, cared for it, and defended it.  Then one day Angel got ahold of it for few minutes before I caught her in the act.  I gave it back to you and scolded her.  Seconds later, you started that old familiar bad dog look you’d developed when you were about to eat a toy.  You were going to eat that purple toy.  That was it, the purple toy went up on this shelf, never to be seen again.

Funny how you never ripped on live birds. Just soft, plush dog toys.

I set the purple toy on the kitchen counter, prop open the back door and step outside.

The patio is still in one piece. That’s a relief.

Tomorrow will be the next of my series of Happy Hump Hours. Maybe I was wrong to host a “party” so soon?  This will be the first one without you milling about, begging for treats.  How can I party without you, Buddy?  It’s going to rain tomorrow, and be very cold.  I am going to have to clean the house up to entertain inside.  Clean the house?  OMG.  How can I possibly disturb any of this?  How can I take away the bits of you all over this house?

I sink to the ground, crying.

I knew this day would come. I knew this time would come.  Somehow, I was hoping it would never actually get here.  Perhaps….just “skip” us….somehow, just let me take my boy out one more hunting season…..but no.

I sit back on the patio and look out at the yard. Major mowing to do.  Suddenly a blast of white fur blazes past me out into the yard.  A jumping, twisting, wild blaze of white fur.

“Angel!” I cry out, wondering what’s got her so riled up.   She stops, halfway across the yard, and turns around, showing off her prize.

Your purple toy.

With dozens of perfectly good toys scattered throughout the house, she somehow manages to nab your one, very special purple toy. How did she get it down from the kitchen counter????????????????????????????????

She refuses to come to me with it. I get up to take it from her.  The chase begins.  This is not like her at all. She runs around, and around me, dancing and taunting me with it, just like you would.

When I almost reach her, she kicks into hyper speed and tears away, running a big circle around me, just like you would.

As she makes the sharp curve of the circle, she digs in and gives a little grunt, then stops cold and looks at me, like “is that all you got?

Just like you would.

Angel has completely distracted me. I am huffing and puffing, determined to catch her.  But oh my, she sure has suddenly become quite the contender, this little girl.  She maintains her distance, drops her front end down, shakes that toy a good few times, then springs up, and runs past me into the house.

There is no getting that purple toy away from her. She has claimed it, thoroughly demonstrated she is worthy of it, and has become a “different” dog with it.   She is behaving like you.  Where is this coming from???

I am stupefied.

I am exhausted.

And….hey…..that was pretty amazing, and fun, too. I plop down on the swing. Sunny Girl rushes over to me and paws my leg.  I smile, “Yes, girl, mama loves you too!” Angel is now in the house, peering out at me through the dog door, still with your purple toy in her mouth.

???????????????????????????????What does it all mean? Maybe nothing, maybe something.  Is this your doing, boy?  The passing of the baton, so to speak?

 

The power of purple.

 

 

Buddy Boy McBrady

Gone Forever Bird Hunting as of Monday, Sept 1st 2014 at 3:30

“Find us some good fields up there, boy, and I will see you again soon.”

 

You can read all about my boy… there are lots of stories under “Buddy – A Series of Adventures” in my blog category, “Words From The Wild”. Please feel free to share with others who may find meaning and value in our journey together.

 

 

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