Monday, December 02, 2013

Buddy

One afternoon in the late 1990s (I think it was '97), when I still lived at "home," I spotted a bouncy little dog running on the sidewalk across the street.  I called him over, sat in the grass with him, and he jumped in my lap!  He was mostly black with some light brown and white markings.  He had a funny curly tail!  My Mom came outside and said something along the lines of, "Oh I have been thinking about a little doggie!!"  After a while the dog went on his way.

At that time, there were trashy renters in the house next door.  Their yard was cluttered with a zillion plastic play things, and their kids NEVER even went outside.  Every holiday, more bulky plastic stuff would show up and it would just sit there.  They spied the dog also, started calling him Bingo, and soon tried to claim him.  They would lure him into their backyard, and close the gate.  They left him outside all the time, with no food or anything.  Well my Mom was having none of that!!  Even though she was a cat person, she had spotted the dog first and there was no way she was going to let these neighbors win.  Every day after the neighbors left for work, my Mom would lean over the chain link fence and heist the doggie over the fence into our yard.  Eventually Buddy (what we named him) would escape, the neighbors would lure him back in, and the whole thing would repeat.  I don't know if the neighbors ever figured out how the dog was getting out of their yard, but after a few weeks of this, they gave up.  Buddy was ours!!  My Mom had won!!!   Not long after the woman saw my Mom outside and asked, "How's Bingo?"  My Mom gave her a look, and replied, "His name is BUDDY."  And spun on her heels to walk away.

Well, we "won" alright.  Buddy turned out to be part Jack Russell.  Ironic considering my Dad WAS Jack Russell.  Buddy would jump jump jump jump.  Repeat.  Spin spin spin spin.  Repeat.  He also had submissive issues.  Whenever someone would come over, he'd run up to them, quiver and quake, then flop over on his back... and ""BLESS" their shoes.  He whined and groaned a lot as if he were trying to talk.  To put it mildly, Buddy was quite nervine.  Of course we loved him anyway, and it was fun to get him all hyped up.

When my Mom got sick, she made my Dad promise to take care of Buddy.  My Dad despised poor Buddy and saw him nothing but a pest.  After she passed, my Dad took care of him anyway, complaining all the time that "damn dog" would not let him rest and had to be at his feet all the time.  I suggested trying to find Buddy a new home a few times, but my Dad would say, "Nooooo, Joyce might come back to haunt me!!"  I couldn't argue with that.

When my Dad fell ill, I brought Buddy to my house for a short while.  Now a fourteen year old dog, you would think time would have calmed him somewhat.  Nope.  Still nervine and bouncy as ever.  I had already taken Skooter in.  Having kids, cats, a sick elderly person, and Buddy was a bit much.  Thankfully one of my childhood friends, also my Dad's neighbor, stepped up and took Buddy in.  They had six dogs already, what difference was seven??  There Buddy finally got what he wanted - to be a lap dog.  For the past two years, they loved him, cared for him, and let him sleep in their beds.

One Tuesday this past November, Buddy was asleep in an unusual place on the tile floor.  Only - he wasn't asleep.  Just earlier that day he was happily following his owner around, and now he lay silently on the cold floor.  He wasn't sick or anything like that.  He was just a sixteen year old dog and his time on earth had come to an end.  I got the phone call I knew would come someday.  My Buddy, the last tie I had to my parents, was gone.  Hopefully Buddy is reunited with my Mom.  And I can imagine my Dad saying, "I STILL can't get away from this damn dog!!"

RIP Buddy.









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2 comments:

  1. So sorry to read of buddy's passing. It sounds like his last years on earth were good ones! Hugs!!!

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  2. A beautiful love story!

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