Monday, July 21, 2008

dog days in summer

I must apologize for not getting anything uploaded this evening, but I have been spending most of my time with my good old Professor Jiggs. And there are two reasons for that.

The first is pictured at the top of the blog. While I was in Melaque, those irish setters were on the beach every day along with their owner -- a local, probably in his late 50s. He would bring the pair of dogs to the beach. Never on a leash. But they were two of the best-behaved dogs I have ever seen. Other dogs would join them on the beach and leave very reluctantly with their owners. In town, I never saw another street dog show any aggression to this pair.

And they were at bliss on the beach. The evening I took their photograph, they had found a coconut in the surf and had been playing with it as if it was the best dog toy on earth. The one on the right is meticulously removing the husk.

What I learned is that a big dog with a heavy coat can lead an active and happy life in Melaque. But I also learned I can have that same time with Jiggs now.

The second reason for spending time with Jiggs is one that many readers have recently experienced. I read Ted Kerasote's Merle's Door while I was in Melaque. I have rather mixed feelings about the book. It is not often that I can enjoy an author's work when he makes himself so unlikeable in the book. Fortunately, the story was not about his elitist ways; it was about a dog he found on a river trip, and how he pushed the envelope to see how far the dog could accept personal responsibility. In Merle's case, he could accept whatever was offered, with a few painful exceptions.

Every book of this nature ends in the same way -- the dog dies. It is almost as if Old Yeller has set the trend for every dog tale. And Merle's death is described in every noble and painful detail. For me, it was a reminder that my dog is going through those end times as well. And I need to spend as much time with him as I can.

So, dear readers, that is why there is no Melaque story posted today. Instead, I am enjoying a beautiful summer day with my golden-haired boy. And he has been enjoying every moment.


Hollito said...

Well, no need to hurry up with the Melaque stories - even I am curious.
I can understand that you prefered to spend the day with Jiggs.
I grew up with a dog that became 18 years old, and I really love dogs - and do not like cats.
So give Jiggs a hug from me and tell him he is a good dog - I can feel this just by looking at the photos of him.

Anonymous said...

Welcome back!
And as eager as we are to read of your trip, your time with Jiggs is as it should be.
We, am thinking most, will be patient.

islagringo said...

Steve, you brought a tear to my eye this morning. Made me start thinking of all the dogs I have loved and lost. While we are dying to hear about your trip, giving the time and love to Prof Jiggs right now is soooooo much more important. Scratch his ears for me!

Babs said...

So glad you're home safe and sound! But probably not as happy as Jiggs is to see you!
I'm still in Texas.......will be home next week

1st Mate said...

I bet he missed you a lot and is really enjoying all the attention. That's the great thing about dogs, they always appreciate your love.

Steve Cotton said...

It feels great to be back in contact with each of you. Thanks to each of you for your comments. The Melaque tales will soon begin. Unfortunately, I have just started a basic outline -- and dog time may intervene this evening.

Anonymous said...

I am very anxious to hear about your trip. I am also very happy you are enjoying this precious time with Jiggs. It is important to enjoy the moment.

Islaholic Trixie said...

I do hope your time with Mr Jiggs will bring peace to your heart and soul. He knows how much you love him!!