Saturday, January 24, 2009

On finding solace in the small pleasures...

After yesterday's post, I thought something a little less serious might be in order. I also thought I'd take my own advice about enjoying my own dog and so we all went for a run in the forest this morning.

For those of you who do not know them, My Beloved and I are privileged to share our home with a beagle and a dachshund/min pin known locally as Darwin the Loud and Humphrey the Small and Irritating. They are both 'recycled dogs' - Darwin (the beagle) from a local hellhole of a pound and Humphrey is a 'Dixie-dog' - finding himself in New England by way of the sunnier climes of Tennessee.

Anyways, they are the loves of my life (along with their Pop, of course) and I don't quite know what I'd do without them. Sometimes - usually when in the car and they're barking and screaming for all they're worth - I fantasize about being without them, but that feeling dissipates soon after we reach our destination - the park, the dog park, the forest, wherever - or after I've had a few moments alone to regain my 'inner poise'. Or a couple of vodka-tonics. But that would be a whole other story!

Moving along. This morning, saddened beyond belief by yesterday's post, I resolved to take the boys on a long run in the forest. We bundled them into their winter attire and off we went. Here are a few pix...

The forest in question, so beautiful....if a touch chilly!

Darwin hoping he can take off and run.....

Humphrey worrying that he's wearing last year's fashions!

Humphrey is very fine furred which means he gets to wear 2 coats in this kind of weather. His faux shearling velcroes up underneath him and then the fleecy green coat wraps around and closes along his back, meaning he's doubly protected. Perhaps I am overly protective, but he really feels the cold in New England, sitting right by the stove even in the summer when it's 95 degrees outside. Personally I think he might be a tad crazy, but that's ok. We all have our insane side, no?

That famous beagle nose gets into everything....including snow piles. Hmmmmmm......

The boys are very close these days. They are incredibly fond of each other and do everything together. This is a classic moment....tails high, ears back, life is good!

And they know to always come back because their favourite treats are on offer - vegan raspberry and peanut butter biscotti, if you please!

And Darwin's not above posing so I can get his 'best side'....

It was a lovely morning - just what was needed to revive flagging spirits. Being in the forest, tramping through the snow, with the pups and the occasional cross-country skier

really boosted my morale and helped me bring back into focus *my* reality. There is so much trauma 'out there', so much to be incredibly saddened by, and it is vitally important to take a break, enjoy moments like this and take stock of your own reality. Find solace in the small pleasures you have in being with your own animal companions and then recharge your batteries and continue doing what you can for the rest of the animals out here.

I know yesterday's post was difficult, but if you have read so far I thank you for not turning away. And the animals thank you too.

Stay vegan, friends!


Anonymous said...

your pictures from the previous post almost killed me but these today made me squeal with delight (a noise I shouldn't make at work) they are so cute! We live with two beagles and they are also need sweaters, or to be under a blanket. Do yours cuddle up?

Amanda said...

Lazysmurf! Thanks for the comment...yes, writing the original post almost drove me to drink, but just knowing that someone out there is touched by it makes it all worthwhile. And I try to remember that whatever I might be feeling about facing the situation, the animals are feeling much much worse being IN the situation.

Yes, my boys are both complete snugglers. Darwin (the beagle) loves to be close to us but under his own terms. Humphrey (the dachs/min pin) just *needs* to be under a cover, in your armpit, wherever he can hide his little face!


Anonymous said...

aww, that is so adorable! I love dogs.

Cordelia! said...

Hi Amanda! Reading your blog does seem to be the best way to get in touch with you. LOVE the pics of your boys in their little sweaters and jackets. I'm glad I saw that happy post before the previous one, or the subject header might have made me think something had happened to Humphrey or Darwin. Not sure if I told you that we had to put Murphey down in October - inoperable prostate cancer. That also has a way of making you tell people to hug their dogs, because you just don't know.

On a happier note, we got a beautiful new dog, Sophie, from Georgia to keep Spenser company. He was distraught with Murphey gone, depressed and destructive. Sophie and Spense took to each other immediately. Back to the disturbing stuff, I certainly felt good about getting a Southern rescue after watching the video on this site: (Be warned that it's significantly disturbing.)

Anyway... Hi, and I hope you're doing well out there in Western MA. Hi to G and the boys, too! Don't be a stranger. :)