Sunday, September 06, 2009

The Dog days Of Summer

I'm sitting here in shock when I realize how fast the summer of 2009 passed. Even though the calender still has it summer for a few more weeks, I've always saw Labor Day as the end of summer. After all, it is the time of year that most kids are back in school, the beaches close and the shadows seem to get longer in the sun as the days get shorter.

Tiny Cars, Big Movies, Giant Trips

I look back at this summer and all the things that happened around me.
I bought a new car, the Honda Fit and I found myself surprised at ow much room is in this little car and how terrific the gas milage is.
I flew to San Francisco to visit some of the most incredible friends anyone could ever ask for.
It was freezing in San Francisco.
I was dazzled by the Star Trek movie, was disappointed by the latest Harry Potter flick and was down right bored with District 9.
The news all summer long was filled with stories of the life and death of Michael Jackson.
I found adventures in geocaching, a GPS hide and seek game played world wide. I also found poison ivy, cuts, scrapes, mosquito bites and even lyme disease played a visit to one of my fellow geocachers.
I also drove my little Honda from Connecticut to South Carolina in what I found would be one of the longest drives I ever took but the friends waiting at the end of that journey were totally worth it.
But the thing that sticks out most in my mind that happened this summer was the adoption of a little black mixed lab my friend named Wrigley.

The Dog Days

I posted last spring about the passing of a very special Labrador Retriever named Sheffield, that one of my best friends had. A tumor claimed the life of this beautiful, loving six year old dog that I was extremely attached to.
My friend Gary was heart broken as was Sheffield's brother George who became very depressed after his death. There was a hole in their home and their hearts. The minute you walked through the door you could feel something very important was missing. George still greeted people with his tail wagging but he just wasn't the same. There was no Sheffield standing in front of him. Sheffie was the leader of the two and he kept George in line and I could tell George missed his older brother. Sheffield was a huge part of this family. We miss Sheffield and always will. He was a dog that could never be replaced.

On one hot summer day, my friend Gary called and told me about a bunch of dogs that were rescued from a "kill shelter" in Georgia and were flown up here to Connecticut. I shuttered to think about what exactly a "kill shelter" was and the better part of me didn't even try to imagine.
Gary ask me if I felt like going down to check out the dogs. I agreed to meet him.
Now Gary didn't have his heart set on finding a dog. The guilt of bringing a new puppy into the house after Sheffie's passing was overwhelming at best. I knew that if Gary didn't see the right dog and know he was the one, he wouldn't even think of getting him.

A Little Blue Collar

After eight, yes, eight long hours waiting in the hot sun in a line a good thousand people long, Gary got to enter a huge tent where only 400 rescued dogs awaited a new home. Gary said he noticed a small black dog sleeping among the jumping, barking animals. The puppy had a blue collar on. That was the color of the collar Sheffield always wore. Gary new instantly that this was the right dog.

Gary brought this 6 week old puppy home. The dog was curious but frightened. This was probably the first time he was ever out of a cage, never mind the first time outside. Quickly this little black puppy sniffed around. He met his new brother George, a 115 pound yellow lab with a heart of gold. I saw a spark in Gary's eyes that I haven't seen since Sheffield passed away. There were smiles and there were tears. I knew the tears were from happiness, guilt and the plain fact that Gary missed Sheffield so much and wished he could be there to meet this little puppy.

Gary named Sheffield after a street he lived on in Chicago. The crossing street there was George Street and that's where he got the name George. Gary then realized that at the end of Sheffield Street was Wrigley Stadium and he knew that Wrigley, or Mr. Wriggles, was the perfect name for this little bundle of love and energy.

It's been a couple of months now and Wrigley has grown a little. Gary found a new loyal friend. George found a little brother and fit right into his new leadership role. George was now the big brother and the dog in charge.
Wrigley's personality has come out. Wrigley is playful, scared of noises, loves to chase bugs and eat sticks. But the thing that is most notable about Mr. Wriggles is that he is one of the most loving dogs I ever met.

From the love of his stuffed toys, to the spark he put back in George and most of all, the hole he helped fill in Gary's heart, I could see that Wrigley is in no way a replacement for Sheffield, if anything, he's an extension of who Sheffie was and a reminder of the love man's best friend could bring to any heart. Welcome to the family Wrigley.

1 comment:

Sarah said...

aww..look at that cute face! it's sad to lose a pet. i hope both gary and george will be doing better soon. oh, and you too!