This Monday morning my garden beckons me with the promise of new beginnings. On the weekend I was able to walk with care over the uneven lawn, fill the bird feeders, impale two halves of a banana on the fruit tray and toss a few balls for Flash while I held onto a crutch for extra balance. Precious small beginnings after seven weeks of immobility.
Kaela, who was such a part of my life in previous blogs, is no longer with us. A few days after I returned home from the hospital, I acknowledged what I had been trying hard to ignore for the past six months. Kaela walked with great difficulty. Her breathing was labored due to tracheal collapse. Control over her bowels had diminished and in the early morning she looked at me shamefaced about accidents on the kitchen tiles. I made the call to the vet who has cared for our dogs for over twenty years. She arrived, a veteran of nearly eighty, with her sympathetic young nurse. We sat on the verandah and talked about broken bones and old age and I made the fateful decision to let Kaela go. She slipped away lying on her favorite spot above the verandah step, gazing at the red barons, the yellow weavers and the bronzed mannikins darting around the bird feeder. She had long abandoned chasing the doves. My own injury did not allow me to hold her but I managed to lean forward and scratch her ears and tell her what a special girl she was. Klaas, the gardener, assisted the nurse transport Kaela's blanketed body to the vet's little van.
His eyes widened when he first saw Kaela.
"My friend, my friend!" he said.
|Kaela keeping guard over the oven on baking day.|