Apr. 21st, 2005

Aloha 'oe

Apr. 21st, 2005 07:47 pm
la_belle_laide: (D)
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Aloha 'oe

Apr. 21st, 2005 07:47 pm
la_belle_laide: (D)
Image hosted by Photobucket.com
la_belle_laide: (D)
This morning I would have told you that today was going to drag on endlessly, but I realized about an hour into it that it couldn't go slowly enough. The hours just unraveled behind me.

I had been dreading taking Jimmy to his new people--not because I didn't think it would work out, but because I would have to finally say goodbye to him. Jimmy did end up going to Spiritdog, which is, without question, the right place for him. Originally I was supposed to meet the guy around by Blue Point (an hour or so from where I work,) but in the end, he couldn't get out that far, so I ended up driving to Lyndenhurst. It took me about two hours.

There was this weird kind of prescience among a few people in the last few days. Yesterday, I was sitting on the bench and Jimmy was with me. I was just rambling to him about where he was going and what I thought it would be like, and once in a while he would lean his head back and lick my face like, "Yeah yeah, whatever you say." Then he got up to walk away, and his leash knocked over the lighthouse cigarette butt disposal thingie next to the bench, and it scared the bejesus out of him. As he went to dart away, he almost slipped out of his collar and I thought, "That could happen at any time. You could lose him before you even have to surrender him. Best to be careful." And I tightened the collar. Then, last night, I was talking to Mindy about how I had to bring Jimmy to the guy from SpiritDog today, and she said, "you know, you might want to double-leash him. Or even get a harness, just to be safe. But definitely double-leash him. If he slips his leash, especially in an unfamiliar place, that would be it."

So Casse came in today to say goodbye to Jimmy, and she took him for a farewell walk. As she was walking him through the field, he slipped his leash and ran. I didn't see it happen; I was just going outside to see if they'd come back yet, when Pat came in and said, "Jimmy got away from Casse. He's running all over the place." Now keep in mind, the hospital land is between the main road and the railroad tracks, and it's not fenced in.

So I dropped my cup of tomato and rice soup and ran for him. I saw him right away, and for a second it was like everything stopped, and I wasn't even scared just then. He was this grinning, white wolf against the green field, and he was so beautiful and so happy that all I could think of was, "He's never, ever been able to run off the leash like this before, and now he gets to spend the rest of his days just as he is now: running on green fields without a leash." But then I realized I had to catch him first.

Poor Casse had taken her shoes off (high heels!) to chase him, forgetting that there are wild, thorny things everywhere. I called, "Jimmy Boy!" in a cheerful voice and spread my arms wide, then turned like I was going to run away from him. He chased me, but skirted me as soon as he got within reach. Then I did it again, and this time when he chased me, I turned around and tackled him. Then Casse put his collar back on and I went inside to change my pants. ;)

By two o'clock, I had everything ready. I had given Jimmy his bordatella shot, packed up his food, his bed and all of his toys, along with his big water bowl, and put everything in my car. Then I clocked out and took Jimmy on our last walk to the railroad tracks.

There's a path that leads to the railroad tracks which is lovely in all of the seasons. Even though that picture shows it during the winter, I have to say, I love it in the spring. At the end of the path, by the railroad tracks, is a field that I nonsensically call The Snowfields even when there's no snow on it. This is where I walk my favorite dogs. It's where I walked Quistis, the other abandoned, schizy, aggressive german shepard we had about four years ago. (She got adopted, by the way, and I saw her last week. She's still schizy, and no one else can get near her, but she seems to remember me.) And this is where I took Jimmy all the time, and where I took him today before leaving.

I was pretty okay until we got there. I'm funny about lasts, you know? Last time I get to feed Jimmy, last time I clean out his cage, last time I wash his toys, and the last time I take him to the snowfields. To Jimmy, it probably just seemed like he was having the best day ever, because all of his favorite people kept taking him on long walks all day. It killed me that he had no idea it was his last day with us. Then I just hugged him and started bawling my eyes out. He kept licking my face like, "What's your problem? Why are you salty?" Even when Jimmy was ready to walk back, I wasn't. He started dragging me back down the path. What was weird, though, was that instead of going back to the kennel, he went right to my car. Or, maybe it's not so weird. His stuff was in my car, maybe he could smell it.

It was a two hour drive to Lyndenhurst, and I cried the entire way like a total emo-tard. I wanted to make sure I got it all out of my system before I met the guy who was going to take Jimmy; even though I had warned him that I was pretty sure I'd be crying, I still wanted to try not to. I mean, as if.

The guy was really good with Jimmy, and it was such a relief, such a difference from the trainer who took one look at him and said, "this dog doesn't belong in society; he'll kill someone." Jimmy did his whole lunging, snapping, growling thing, and the guy wasn't impressed. He just liked Jimmy right away, said that he was misunderstood, and that he knew exactly how to deal with him. For the next hour and a half or so, we were in the backyard (it was the guy's old house; he's moving the entire sanctuary to upstate NY--the place on the web page.) I was holding Jimmy's leash while this guy did all sorts of dog-talking to him, like getting on the ground to do a play bow, and barking, and all of this other stuff. Jimmy kept hiding behind my legs, looking up at me like, "why is this person howling? How am I supposed to react to that?" When this guy wasn't on the ground trying to play with Jimmy, we were talking, mostly about dogs, obviously. He was very confident and he really obviously understood dogs. I kept picturing the awesome land he has upstate, the field and the river, and the little trailers with dog beds, thinking how happy Jimmy is going to be once he learns to trust this guy (which has to be tonight, since they are driving up there together!) He's the first person I met (aside from the kennel people) who had no fear at all of Jimmy.

Finally, I had to go. We took Jimmy inside the house (which was gutted--Jimmy would have to hang around indoors until the guy was finished loading up his truck; in fact they are probably still there.) Jimmy still tried a few of his intimidation tricks, but they were half-hearted. I brought in his bag of things: the bed, toys, food, medicine and files, and started arranging all of them and explaining everything like someone's mom sending their kid to their first sleepover. "This is Jimmy's bed, and this is his favorite toy, it's a stuffed sheep. He's got enough food for a few days, so you can switch him over slowly. We give him this food because he gets diarrhea sometimes. And this is his medicine (Doxycyclin--Jimmy was recently diagnosed with Lyme disease,) and here's enough Interceptor to last the year...." and so on. And that's when I started getting all teary again. I had to ask the guy if I could take a minute to say goodbye to my boy. He left us alone in the dilapidated kitchen. Then I hugged Jimmy again, gave him a kiss on his big, pink nose and told him that he had just met his lucky break. Most people who had met Jimmy had taken one look at him and said, "Euthanasia is the likeliest option," but this guy immediately saw him for what he really was, which is just a confused dog who wants a green field to run around on, and a pack to run with.

Before I could get too carried away, the guy came back downstairs and showed me the one picture that was left on his refrigerator, which was of one of his dogs. He said she was his favorite, and she had died at three of lymphoma. I said, "That's awful; I'm so sorry," but to be honest, I was really just looking at Jimmy, because I knew it was for the last time. Then he said, "Go on, look at the picture."

I did. "That looks like a wolf," I told him, and he smiled sort of sly-like and said, "She was. Oh, I forgot to tell you, I work with wolves, too." To which I had almost nothing to say, because it's just too awesome. He said, "All dogs are wolves. Your Saluki is a wolf, too." Then he took Jimmy's leash and sat on the steps, pulled Jimmy over to him, and started petting him. Jimmy still looked nervous, but very much like he did the first time I met him, when he cowered in the corner growling, and I sat down, took his leash, and started petting him.

I thanked him, then I hugged Jimmy one more time, and ran out the door because I knew I was going to be a total girl and start to cry again. Thankfully, I was able to make it till I got on the road first.

And that's how I let Jimmy go.
la_belle_laide: (D)
This morning I would have told you that today was going to drag on endlessly, but I realized about an hour into it that it couldn't go slowly enough. The hours just unraveled behind me.

I had been dreading taking Jimmy to his new people--not because I didn't think it would work out, but because I would have to finally say goodbye to him. Jimmy did end up going to Spiritdog, which is, without question, the right place for him. Originally I was supposed to meet the guy around by Blue Point (an hour or so from where I work,) but in the end, he couldn't get out that far, so I ended up driving to Lyndenhurst. It took me about two hours.

There was this weird kind of prescience among a few people in the last few days. Yesterday, I was sitting on the bench and Jimmy was with me. I was just rambling to him about where he was going and what I thought it would be like, and once in a while he would lean his head back and lick my face like, "Yeah yeah, whatever you say." Then he got up to walk away, and his leash knocked over the lighthouse cigarette butt disposal thingie next to the bench, and it scared the bejesus out of him. As he went to dart away, he almost slipped out of his collar and I thought, "That could happen at any time. You could lose him before you even have to surrender him. Best to be careful." And I tightened the collar. Then, last night, I was talking to Mindy about how I had to bring Jimmy to the guy from SpiritDog today, and she said, "you know, you might want to double-leash him. Or even get a harness, just to be safe. But definitely double-leash him. If he slips his leash, especially in an unfamiliar place, that would be it."

So Casse came in today to say goodbye to Jimmy, and she took him for a farewell walk. As she was walking him through the field, he slipped his leash and ran. I didn't see it happen; I was just going outside to see if they'd come back yet, when Pat came in and said, "Jimmy got away from Casse. He's running all over the place." Now keep in mind, the hospital land is between the main road and the railroad tracks, and it's not fenced in.

So I dropped my cup of tomato and rice soup and ran for him. I saw him right away, and for a second it was like everything stopped, and I wasn't even scared just then. He was this grinning, white wolf against the green field, and he was so beautiful and so happy that all I could think of was, "He's never, ever been able to run off the leash like this before, and now he gets to spend the rest of his days just as he is now: running on green fields without a leash." But then I realized I had to catch him first.

Poor Casse had taken her shoes off (high heels!) to chase him, forgetting that there are wild, thorny things everywhere. I called, "Jimmy Boy!" in a cheerful voice and spread my arms wide, then turned like I was going to run away from him. He chased me, but skirted me as soon as he got within reach. Then I did it again, and this time when he chased me, I turned around and tackled him. Then Casse put his collar back on and I went inside to change my pants. ;)

By two o'clock, I had everything ready. I had given Jimmy his bordatella shot, packed up his food, his bed and all of his toys, along with his big water bowl, and put everything in my car. Then I clocked out and took Jimmy on our last walk to the railroad tracks.

There's a path that leads to the railroad tracks which is lovely in all of the seasons. Even though that picture shows it during the winter, I have to say, I love it in the spring. At the end of the path, by the railroad tracks, is a field that I nonsensically call The Snowfields even when there's no snow on it. This is where I walk my favorite dogs. It's where I walked Quistis, the other abandoned, schizy, aggressive german shepard we had about four years ago. (She got adopted, by the way, and I saw her last week. She's still schizy, and no one else can get near her, but she seems to remember me.) And this is where I took Jimmy all the time, and where I took him today before leaving.

I was pretty okay until we got there. I'm funny about lasts, you know? Last time I get to feed Jimmy, last time I clean out his cage, last time I wash his toys, and the last time I take him to the snowfields. To Jimmy, it probably just seemed like he was having the best day ever, because all of his favorite people kept taking him on long walks all day. It killed me that he had no idea it was his last day with us. Then I just hugged him and started bawling my eyes out. He kept licking my face like, "What's your problem? Why are you salty?" Even when Jimmy was ready to walk back, I wasn't. He started dragging me back down the path. What was weird, though, was that instead of going back to the kennel, he went right to my car. Or, maybe it's not so weird. His stuff was in my car, maybe he could smell it.

It was a two hour drive to Lyndenhurst, and I cried the entire way like a total emo-tard. I wanted to make sure I got it all out of my system before I met the guy who was going to take Jimmy; even though I had warned him that I was pretty sure I'd be crying, I still wanted to try not to. I mean, as if.

The guy was really good with Jimmy, and it was such a relief, such a difference from the trainer who took one look at him and said, "this dog doesn't belong in society; he'll kill someone." Jimmy did his whole lunging, snapping, growling thing, and the guy wasn't impressed. He just liked Jimmy right away, said that he was misunderstood, and that he knew exactly how to deal with him. For the next hour and a half or so, we were in the backyard (it was the guy's old house; he's moving the entire sanctuary to upstate NY--the place on the web page.) I was holding Jimmy's leash while this guy did all sorts of dog-talking to him, like getting on the ground to do a play bow, and barking, and all of this other stuff. Jimmy kept hiding behind my legs, looking up at me like, "why is this person howling? How am I supposed to react to that?" When this guy wasn't on the ground trying to play with Jimmy, we were talking, mostly about dogs, obviously. He was very confident and he really obviously understood dogs. I kept picturing the awesome land he has upstate, the field and the river, and the little trailers with dog beds, thinking how happy Jimmy is going to be once he learns to trust this guy (which has to be tonight, since they are driving up there together!) He's the first person I met (aside from the kennel people) who had no fear at all of Jimmy.

Finally, I had to go. We took Jimmy inside the house (which was gutted--Jimmy would have to hang around indoors until the guy was finished loading up his truck; in fact they are probably still there.) Jimmy still tried a few of his intimidation tricks, but they were half-hearted. I brought in his bag of things: the bed, toys, food, medicine and files, and started arranging all of them and explaining everything like someone's mom sending their kid to their first sleepover. "This is Jimmy's bed, and this is his favorite toy, it's a stuffed sheep. He's got enough food for a few days, so you can switch him over slowly. We give him this food because he gets diarrhea sometimes. And this is his medicine (Doxycyclin--Jimmy was recently diagnosed with Lyme disease,) and here's enough Interceptor to last the year...." and so on. And that's when I started getting all teary again. I had to ask the guy if I could take a minute to say goodbye to my boy. He left us alone in the dilapidated kitchen. Then I hugged Jimmy again, gave him a kiss on his big, pink nose and told him that he had just met his lucky break. Most people who had met Jimmy had taken one look at him and said, "Euthanasia is the likeliest option," but this guy immediately saw him for what he really was, which is just a confused dog who wants a green field to run around on, and a pack to run with.

Before I could get too carried away, the guy came back downstairs and showed me the one picture that was left on his refrigerator, which was of one of his dogs. He said she was his favorite, and she had died at three of lymphoma. I said, "That's awful; I'm so sorry," but to be honest, I was really just looking at Jimmy, because I knew it was for the last time. Then he said, "Go on, look at the picture."

I did. "That looks like a wolf," I told him, and he smiled sort of sly-like and said, "She was. Oh, I forgot to tell you, I work with wolves, too." To which I had almost nothing to say, because it's just too awesome. He said, "All dogs are wolves. Your Saluki is a wolf, too." Then he took Jimmy's leash and sat on the steps, pulled Jimmy over to him, and started petting him. Jimmy still looked nervous, but very much like he did the first time I met him, when he cowered in the corner growling, and I sat down, took his leash, and started petting him.

I thanked him, then I hugged Jimmy one more time, and ran out the door because I knew I was going to be a total girl and start to cry again. Thankfully, I was able to make it till I got on the road first.

And that's how I let Jimmy go.

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