I would probably self-identify as a female rural West Coast (of USA) Caucasian, but that wouldn't include, as labels often don't, my journey from a small monocultural mill town to a solo sabbatical in six countries (in '91). Now I'm on to the exciting sojourn of retirement (from full-time worklife five years ago). I love travel and art and aesthetics, as well as almost all cats and dogs I've met. This blog is just for fun and experimenting with the tools. It should be amusing...

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Meanwhile, Back to Our Theme...

DID YOU KNOW if you Google "St. Bernard dogs" in under a second you'll have hours of viewing ahead of you?! In case you weren't sure what they look like, here's ample evidence of how noble, silly and wonderful these canine companions can be. Famous for rescuing lost travelers in the Alps, these dogs make loving, protective and often hilarious pets.

My sister Heidi was a cross between a long-and short-haired version of the breed. She loved to romp with children, play in the snow, and sleep draped on top of her favorite humans. She could tell from the smallest morsel if a piece of bread was buttered or not, and splat!--out it came if no butter was included. Heidi was loving to the many cats in our small family, and guarded the homefront from deliverymen, but she would hop into a car with anyone who'd offer her a ride, (like the dogcatcher).

I think my love of dogs and cats no doubt came from having this huge slobbery sister and friend from about the time I was five until I was fifteen or so. I wish I had more pictures of us together, but the memories are there, and come alive when I Google through some of the pages a click offers.

What was your significant pet as a child? What happened in your adventures together? Do you have a sense that they helped shape your outlook or experiences? Please comment if you like!



Blogger Ritergal said...

We were not a pet oriented family, although a few critters did flow through. The most significant was Pete Parakeet. We got him from the nest, and he was a proficient conversationalist. His main repertoire consisted of "I'm a little varmint," "Pass the bird seed," and "A bird can't talk!" He also picked up random sounds, like my sister's name, and he could call the dog so perfectly the dog would come running and look entirely baffled.

I loved the feel of Pete pecking gently at my hair or cheek, and he loved to nestly on the back of my neck under my long hair. What he did not love was returning to his cage!

One Sunday afternoon he was helping us work a jigsaw puzzle by dropping pieces to the floor. When he flew down to the floor to arrange his own pieces, my sister inadvertently stepped on his foot when she moved. His leg snapped. He quickly pecked off the soda straw splint the vet advised my father to apply. For the next six weeks or so, he perched on one foot, spending much of his time preening the broken leg with his beak.

The leg healed perfectly, but he never forgave my sister. He took to dive-bombing her and viciously biting her. Pete went to live with our speech therapist friend who launched him on the road to speeck.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Anonymous ~Kathi said...

Poor bird with a grudge! That's a tale that sticks with you. We had friends with Jerry the parekeet. He was a very messy bird and I thought he was eternal until I realized years later there must have been a succession of Jerrys!
Thanks for visiting! ~Kathi

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


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