She slowly made her way up the hill. Today seemed to be particularly challenging. Her old bones were sore and her muscles weren’t what they used to be. She couldn’t remember how many times she’d made the climb. She’d climbed it at least in the hundreds and perhaps the thousands of times. This was her favorite outside place. Her favorite inside place was her bed where she could comfortably curl up, be with her family, and feel safe and secure.
She knew that when she got to the top of the hill that she’d be able to see all the land that she considered her domain, the mountains to the west, the woodlands to the east, and the rolling hills to the north and south.
She finally crested the hill, sat down on the ground warmed by the late summer sun and enjoyed the feel of the sun and light wind on her face and body. She looked at the surroundings and marveled at the snow still on the mountains following an incredibly hot summer. Some things do endure.
Addy watched the sun approach the rugged peaks of the far off mountains and knew the last days of summer were here. She was going to enjoy the sunset today.
She relished this feeling for the moment and then decided that a lay down and rest was in order. Addy, the Irish Wolf Hound had earned her time in the sun.
She lay with head and body facing the setting sun and thought about her life at this place. She thought about this hill and how as a puppy, when she appeared to be all legs, she made attempt after attempt to run down the hill without falling over and subsequently rolling to the bottom. Her human guardians greeted these adventures with loud guffaws of laughter. In her mind, if they could laugh so could she and away she’d go again. That was a long time ago now.
She thought about how she had met these wonderful people.
There is a common misconception that a guardian always picks its new family member. The smart guardians realize that this is a mutual affair and allow the potential family member to help in the choosing. That’s what happened with her and her guardians. She knew instinctively when they came to see her and her littermates that she would be going home with them. These people had an aura of trust, authority, and kindness, which she had learned to identify and accept by her mother and her mother’s guardians.
When she saw them she immediately trotted over pushing her brothers and sisters out of the way. This was her time and no one was getting in the way. She picked up a subtle sign from her mother that this was Ok. She walked straight to the two potential guardians, sat directly in front of them, and then indicated that getting a pet from them would be OK. Her eyes did the telling and from there the bond was built.
All these years later, she still felt that same as the day she met them. It was a perfect match.
Addy heard a voice that she thought she knew but couldn’t recognize. It was saying in a quiet voice, “Addy, its’ time to come home”. She knew whoever it was that was saying it was right but there was still some sun left and she really needed a rest. Her eyes were getting droopy and her head was getting heavy so she succumbed to the need for sleep and laid her head on her paws. She felt herself drifting off to sleep but this feeling was different. Again, she heard the soft and reassuring voice, “Addy, it’s time to come home”. She didn’t know who this stranger may be but she knew the voice was right. It was time to go home.
Her transition into sleep was different this time. No multiple spins and ups and downs to get comfortable. No ache in the bones or muscles, just a pleasant drift into the comfort of a deep sleep.
Once again she heard the voice but this time it said, “Welcome home old girl, you’ve earned your rest.”
NEXT: The Guardians
AUTHOR’S NOTE: This is a work of fiction but Addy did exist. She was gentle, smart, loving, and had a heart (although weak) that many would admire. In the next post, I’ll introduce her to you in a more defined way with pictures. Her guardians are as I described. They are two of the finest people I know and I’m not saying that because we’re related. They have a natural way with animals.