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Chet's Angel

Monday, November 23, 2009

Thank you, everyone, for your support, for your shared stories, for testifying to the frightening importance of your dogs and cats and cockatiels in your lives. Clearly, we are on the same wavelength. I had a little white budgie named Edie years ago who I'd caught by hand as he fluttered along I-95 in Connecticut in late October. He was with me only three years, but he carved a little roost in my heart that's never been filled. When I was sick, Edie would fly all the way down the dark hallway to find me, and cuddle up under my chin. He was tiny, but so full of love. When Edie died, I bought a lovely chicory-blue budgie to replace him, and named him Bing. Bing was a little twit, given to biting the inside of my nostril just to hear me yelp, and he lived eight full years before he decided to do a little beak-fencing with Charlie the macaw. You win some, you lose some.

April's comment on "Chet's Fall" about her mom's not wanting to get a kitten after losing a beloved cat reminded me of my mom. We had one dachshund, and he was a doozie, a truly great dog, a solid, stolid character, built like a brick outhouse, not one of those spindly, roach-backed mini's which seem to be all you see these days. And when Volks passed on, Mom said never again. I wonder how it will be for me. I can't imagine living without Boston kisses, but then...I just don't know. His fall certainly made me think about it, though.

Himself looks like a puddle of ink on the freshly-washed, sunshiny fleece blanket after an all-day woods trek that culminated in hamburgers cooked over a wood fire. Baker heaven. He climbed inside many hollow trees and logs, looking for racketycoons and squirtles. Yes, he got half a burger.

Sights along the way to Chet's cliff:

The long, flyspecked face of a curious horse. Horses, their warm sweet breath, hot close hair, their sweaty scent, their kind eyes, always a comfort to me. They seem to like people. I wonder why that would be; like cattle, they don't have to be kind to us, but they are.

The incredible beauty that surrounds us. How is it that we get to drive down roads like these? Could a place be more beautiful than this township road in late October?

How I miss the fiery sugar maples. There are not enough of them to go around. I must visit this one now that it's bare, just to remember.

Chet listens for a squirtle in the leaves behind him. He's in fine form just a week after his accident. Heck, he was fine a minute afterward.

A languid tussock moth caterpillar polishes off a raspberry leaf.

As we prepare to leave, Chet's angel smiles softly.


Like the terrible scare when you barely squeak through an intersection, missing a stop sign and somehow finding the road ahead clear of every car, I find these near misses serve a great purpose.
They rattle us just enough to send our thoughts spinning--of what we thought we knew, we're no longer sure.
And the the smallest beauties bring us to tears.

And, in that, is the good.
Kiss the Bacon a good one for me.

Losing pets is the hardest part of having them in our lives--but to not have them would be even more difficult.
When our first dog died, my husband and I found another one within two weeks--turned out to be a mistake, as it happens, but there was just no sense to not having a pet. Since that first dog, we have rescued 3 more dogs. When we first found our sweet dog Tipper, my husband sat down with her and told her he would be there for her when that final moment came. No kidding--I was inside and saw him sitting with her outside, wiping his eyes. I asked--what were you saying to her. He said--I told her about all the good dogs we have had, and the ones we have had to eventually say goodbye to, and that I'd be there for her when we had to say goodbye.
Sniff--sorry. But, what a guy! And what a dog.

Have you ever considered a second Boston ... so Chet could raise him up?

Blessings to Chet Baker, his Mether and his people who adore him. Thank you so much for these postings and this blog.

While your blog in general, and your gorgeous children, noble husband and fabulous art are enchanting - I must admit I come here to read about the Baker. The tale of his cliff diving adventure stopped my heart.

Our french bulldog, Remy has many of Chetty's characteristics, with additional couch potato built in and less interest in chiptymunks. He also gets the last licks out of yogurt cups, and bites of cheesebuger, naturally.

We wondered, with our obsessive love of our first small, snorting, corn chip-footed rump roast of a dog (who will obviously live forever) how we could ever be without him. Which is why is we rescued dog number two. Now the eldest is 8, and the youngster (From the French Bulldog Rescue Network) is four. We decided some dog overlap was the only possible solution.

I now have a footwarmer for each foot, which comes in handy on those cold two-dog nights.
(Ari the Younger, trapped in the eiderdown -

Posted by Robynn McCarthy November 24, 2009 at 6:02 PM

Oh, Robynn, I love Frenchies sooo much. When I started thinking about which dog breed I'd like, I started with Frenchies and pugs, but finally decided to opt for something longer-legged and thus more athletic. Good thing, too...I'd be papoosing the little rump roasts on the many-mile hikes I take! LOVE your description, how very apt. I hear they make the best gravy, too.

I've loved and lost so many puppers, but I can't imagine saying that this one is the last because it's too painful. The joy I find in meeting and loving each new personality is just too overwhelming to forgo, not to mention the sheer number of puppers who need the types of homes that I can provide.

We had a golden once go over a cliff. Not so dramatic as Chet's fall, because he knew what he was doing and he just hopped down rocks we couldn't see. But I know oh so well that feeling in the pit of your stomach when we don't know what we'll find at the bottom. I'm so glad Chet is well, and you do not ever need to apologize or justify your love for him. Ever.

i don't even know chet-but I love him! i look at my pug, mugsy and your story pierced my heart and shook me up. I look at little Chet and he is so adorable. I look at mugsy and think---that could have been you, my dear. What a heart breaker these fuzzy friends can be...

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