In the Humble Opinion of LittleBill, Socialist, Atheist, and Humanist
Three Strange Days


What a strange three days these have been for me! On Monday, I was trying to think of a vocabulary of triumph expressive enough to convey my joy at the possibility of a whole new world on Tuesday.

On Tuesday morning, it suddenly crossed my mind that I had no idea what kind of world we would have by afternoon, so my emotional slate sent blank.

On Tuesday afternoon, just as the returns started to come in, I was at the vet's office having my dear beagle Holmes put to sleep. His body, likely full of cancer, had finally and suddenly given out. Oh, how I miss his baying, which always came at times of my concentration on breaking news or when the phone rang! And last night I watched as my six cats and his best friend, my Jack Russell mix, spent the evening wandering around the house looking for him in vain.

This morning, political things were looking good, but my emotional self had been drained and numbed. I just sat staring into space, not really thinking about anything. At noon my daughter called and said she was coming to get me and drive me to her daughter Anmai's School, where her husband Carl had set up their telescope with a solar filter so that the children could look at Mercury traveling across the Sun. There were children all over the place and cars parked everywhere. It was a madhouse of activity, and someone made it even worse by bringing a bunch of 6-week old kittens to give away.

Anmai came running back and asked her mother if she could have one, but got no for an answer. But there was Grandma. So I asked her if there were any left, and there was just one, the little black runt of the litter. I told her to bring it back to me, and after a great deal of loving mauling by numerous children, he finally settled down in my arm. I named him Mercury in honor of the occasion, but he will be called Merc. (The view of Mercury crossing the Sun by the way, was spectacular.)

This evening, I am calmly excited about the election (if you can comprehend such a reaction), but my loss of an old dog at the end of his life has been tempered at the thought of a little black body in a carrier in the next room who is at the beginning of his.


Beach Bum said...

Several months ago I had to take my dog, Jasmine, to the vet to be put to sleep. She was 13 years old and her health had been getting worse until I had to force Dragonwife to understand that letting her go on much longer would have been cruel. Even walking for her had at times become painful and hard. I must admit I was very stoic taking her to the vet and staying with her after she was put down but as soon as I walked out the door it hit me like a ton a of bricks. Jasmine had been a mixed breed black lab pup abandoned and tied on a doorstep in a friends neighborhood along with several of her brothers and sisters at other houses. She was a member of the family and Miss Wiggles still asks when she will be coming back from heaven.

Beach Bum said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

an average patriot said...

Sorry to hear about Holmes. It's funny when you were talking about the kittens I knew one would be going home with you. Lucky Merc!
Like you I was ecstatic about the elections. I have been calling for a full takeover for over a year and people thought I was crazy.
today the senate was won and listening to Reid I can only hope he comes through with what he says. This is going to be interesting. Because I can't see Bush giving in on anything. Take it easy!

LittleBill said...

Thank you both, Beach Bum and AAP, for your comments of condolence. They meant a lot to me. I plan to get back to both of your sites very soon.The new cat, the vet discovered today, is a she rather than a he. She will still have the same name. She weighed in at 9/10 of A POUND TODAY, BY THE WAY.

Vigilante said...

Beach & Bill, You can get hammered by pets. I had a cat once, who the vet let me hold in my hands and look into her eyes as he put the needle in. I looked into those eyes until they glazed over and felt her death. I do not remember her name or (actually) her gender.

For me, dogs are different. They have names and personalities that are seared into your memory.

Schatze was one: a classic black and tan Doberman. Suddenly, at an age of 4-5 years, after several days of running full tilt on a school play ground, she was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. The last time I saw her alive was the morning following her diagnosis when she gingerly walked to the door and stood there, watching me leave for work. Not like her. We looked into each other's eyes for an instant, and then I was gone. And then she was gone. I got a call from my mate in tears at 3:00 that she was going to the vet in bad shape. I drove home at 80 MPH (at least that was my heart rate) and got there after she had passed away. She was still warm, though.

I felt myself in a chasm of guilt for not giving a goodbye pat in the morning and not being there to say good-bye in her last afternoon.

I'm not into occult or superstition stuff. Not at all. The following weekend, I took Schatze's ashes up to the mountain creek where she and her partner, Sienna, used to run as free as mountain lions. I arrived at the usual time, about 10:00 A.M. Laid her ashes on both banks and in the water at our favorite crossing. I turned with Sienna by my side for a last look. Out of the shadows of the firs came an owl and it leisurely flew by my left shoulder. If it had passed any closer, it would have grazed me. In that moment, I knew Schatze had forgiven me.

Dogs will tear you apart.

LittleBill said...

Oh, Vigilante, your story makes me cry. How well I understand that feeling, and the guilt you feel if you didn't quite understand how far things had progressed. Love you for feeling that way.

LittleBill said...

Correction: He's a she. She will continue to be named after Mercury and be called Merc by me.
She's getting more active all the time, and her favorite toys are my two slippers. I took pictures, and hope they will turn out. If so, I'll print them in my blog.