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Friday, May 04, 2007

Birthdays and goodbyes

Today would have been Joy's 15th birthday. So last night Dennis and I took all the dogs up to Bignor Hill and spread Joy's ashes. There is a lovely spot up there with a large open field and great 360 degree views. We spread her ashes in the same spot that we spread Noel's ashes a few years ago. This photo of Joy was taken at Bignor Hill in 2003 when she was 11.
This stone used to be at Bignor Hill. I remember when Dennis and I first saw it and we tried to figure out what it meant. I do not know why the stone was there and it is now gone. When I read it for the first time my heart broke for whoever put the stone there. The words are " You shall wake grown young with perfect sleep". It turns out to be from a sonnet by Belloc.
I can imagine Joy grown young again running thru those fields herding sheep as that was her favorite thing to do. The spot reminds me of where I used to take Joy herding upstate NY when was just a baby. We would train with Jackie and the farm was just beautiful. Although we did alot of herding and training; the real reason I went was just to enjoy watching the dogs run run run in open fields and countryside. This was something they did not often get the chance to do. This is the same reason why I now love England.

These are sheep at Bignor Hill. God help them with Joy loose and chasing them for all eternity. She did not quite understand the clear distinction between herding and chasing. Bless her!

So today Joy's littermates, Bell and Dash turn 15. Happy Birthday Bell and Dash! Eleanor sent me some photos of Dash taken this week. (ps eleanor who did his ears?! - see even at 15 years old I want to groom my puppies!) Eleanor says Dash is doing well; he is still always hungry as shelties tend to be and still enjoys being fussed over. A friend of Eleanor's brought a cake into dog class to celebrate Dash's birthday and he got to eat some icing. Dash was always a gentleman and quite the social butterfly so I am glad he got to spend some time being fussed over.

Yesterday we also said good-bye to our caravan. This was not planned and it was stolen right off of our front drive. I am remarkably calm about it and thank goodness for insurance. When I pulled up at the house and realized that the caravan was missing I just started to shake. All I could think about was the dogs in the house. Thank God the burglars just took the caravan and never went into the house with the dogs. Caravans are replaceable.


Lian said...

Happy Birthday to Bell & Dash and I miss you, Joy. It is not the same whenever I come to train at yours, something is missing.

Sorry to hear about your caravan, I will keep my eye open if I spot it somewhere!

I am glad all the girls are alright!

Andy & Nancy said...

What a lovely thing to do in memory of Joy.

Sorry about the caravan, what a pain but thankfully they didn't try to break into the house where the dogs were.

Ann Marie said...

How awful about your caravan! See? New York or West Sussex - those rotten bastiges are everywhere!

On a more gentler note, what a beautiful sentiment carved in that stone. May it give us peace to know that Joy, Yogi and all our beloved pets will "wake grown young".

Ann Marie

Mary-Anne said...

What a beautiful and appropriate place for Joy! I still have Sally's ashes - somehow I can't imagine her wanting to be anywhere else but with me.

Dash looks wonderful - happy 15th!

How scary about the caravan - good thing that there were no dogs in it at the time!