Best Buddies Forever
by Diane Chamberlain
I have many tales that fit this weekend’s theme! Like the time my best friend and I ran away . . . to my screened porch, with my parents’ permission. Or the runaway kids I worked with in San Diego. But I’ll start off the comments with a different kind of runaway story that happened just today. I look forward to seeing what meaning that word has for you.
If you’re new to Story Weekend, here’s how it works: I pick a theme and you share something from your life that relates to that theme, however you interpret it. Thanks to all of you who’ve contributed. As always, there are a few “rules”:
I’m now the happy owner of my second beach condo, this one a three bedroom. They are both rentals, but we use them when we can and we looooooove being right on the ocean. This one was a tad dated and I knew I wanted to spruce it up a bit. My youngest stepdaughter, Caitlin, is an interior designer in California (check out her company, Symmetry Designs), and she asked if she could do the design work. That sounded like great fun, so of course I said yes. And as many of you know, my oldest stepdaughter is Brittany, aka Pretty Handy Girl–a professional do-it-yourself blogger. And my middle stepdaughter, Alana, is an architect, and while she wasn’t able to physically help out on this project, she’s contributing some of her beautiful photography for the walls. Of course, John’s photography will be well in evidence, too! So, as you can imagine, the “sprucing up” has turned into a complete gutting! It’s going to be so wonderful when we’re all finished with our contributions. The new floor is in (those tall things are the painted closet doors, waiting to be reinstalled, and the dog is Brittany’s sweet Buddy). My job has been mainly to pay the credit card bill. Yikes! (I know I went over my word count, but I’m excited!!)
On Facebook, I asked for some questions that were a bit out of the ordinary and received plenty! So here’s part 3. Feel free to answer any of these questions yourself in the comments if you like! I’m trying to alternate “personal” and “professional” questions, so here goes:
Q. When you were young, did you feel the need to be part of the “in” or “popular” group?
Happy Holidays, and congratulations to Deb Miller, whose name was picked randomly from all the comments sent to this blog in the last couple of months. Deb will receive a $100 gift certificate to whatever bookstore, online or not, she chooses.
I hope you’re able to enjoy a few days with friends and family, and of course, a good book!
ps That’s my gone-but-not-forgotten Goldens, Ben and Chapel, making their yearly appearance. How I miss those sweeties!
You may remember we lost our eight-year-old Sheltie, Jet, a couple of months ago. There are those people who get another dog right away (me) and those who wait a long time (John) and then there are those who compromise (us, usually). So when I saw the picture of an eight-month-old Sheltie on a breeder’s website and learned she was selling him because he was growing too tall to show in the conformation ring, I was ready. And when John met him, he was ready, too. (Here’s how I really knew he’d be our dog even before I met him: when the breeder spoke to me on the phone and told me his name was “Cole”, I got a chill up my spine. My dogs have often been given a name connected in some way to my books. The main character in my very first novel was named Cole. Who names a dog Cole? It was meant to be. And yes, he looks a lot like Jet but that was not intentional. A little spooky, though.)
In what now seems like another life, I once belonged to a dog training club. My then-husband and I had two wonderful golden retrievers and for years we trained them in obedience and agility, going to shows each weekend and working and playing hard with our dogs. Then there was a divorce and a move away from the club, and with a blossoming career and two dogs to manage on my own, my training time slipped away. The final blow was Rheumatoid Arthritis, which severely limited my ability to work with my dogs. (You can see the bottom of my brace in this picture). Thus they became couch potatoes. More dogs have followed and while I made sure to take each of them to obedience class, that was the end of our training. They each learned the basics–sit, down, stay, come (sort of)–and that’s about it.
This has been a hard week. We lost our beautiful little Jet to cancer on Monday; he’d never even seemed sick until Sunday. A great shock for us, and Keeper is a little lost soul without his brother. I’m still in that painful “I can’t believe it” stage.
Then Tuesday night, my email account was hacked so thoroughly that I couldn’t prove to AOL that I was who I said I was. (“what’s your first pet’s name?” “Kona.” “No that’s not right.” “Yes it is!”) I felt like I was in one of those movies where the hero can’t prove he really is himself. Shudder.
If you’re new to Story Weekend, here’s how it works: I pick a theme and you share something from your life that relates to that theme, however you interpret it. Thanks to all of you who’ve been contributing. As always, there are a few “rules”:
▪ The story must be true
Making Keeper dance for his supper. (Sorry I haven’t figured out how to properly hold my iPhone video camera yet!)