The “World of Blogging” brings together so many people across the world, near and far. So many wonderful people, who, in “real life”, we wouldn't have the opportunity to meet. Well, in my case, anyway. Those of you who regularly visit and comment on my blog have become dear to me, and from that, comes caring. Caring about each other's personal highs and lows throughout the course has brought me laughter, and along with the laughter, tears.
Some of you, dear readers, visit Liz’s blog, “Finding Life Hard”…a very apt title for what Liz has been experiencing these past few days. This one is for you, Liz…and for
Dear Harvey, Liz’s beloved pet, a proud, beautiful English setter, whom all those who partake in Liz’s blog grew to know and love, is no longer with us.
I know I fell in love with
I was living and working in Glenden, north-west of Mackay, a specially-constructed mining town to service Newlands coal mine, a susbsidiary of MIM (Mount Isa Mines). The mine is situated 33kms from town. The new
Morris Catering, who had the catering and accommodation contract, were approached by the hierarchy of the mining company to erect a first-class motel of twenty rooms, together with a licensed restaurant to cater to the needs of visiting mining company representatives, bankers, financiers, mining executives and the like.
When I left
Along with the friendship and the job, came Bundy, Charles and Karen’s much-loved English setter. Bundy was cream in colour, similar to Liz’s
I’m sure Bundy was a human dressed in dog’s clothes. Charles had a picture of him, sitting at the cocktail bar, dark glasses perched on his aristocratic nose, a cigarette dangling from the corner of his smiling mouth and a stubby of beer (VB), clutched in his paws. Bundy was allowed in the foyer, office and bar area only when the guests were absent. Often during dinner service, he could be seen sitting outside the sliding glass doors, staring into the restaurant, watching every mouthful taken by the dinner guests. If I hadn’t known better I could have felt so sorry for the poor, "starved", begging dog and allowed his pleading eyes rip at the chords of my heart. However, I did know better. I was wise to his ploys! Bundy was a very well-cared for dog. He was spotless in his habits, never “spoiling” the grounds of the motel, instead opting to wander to uninhabited acres of shrubs, open-space and bushland across the way from his personal territory.
Whenever Charles and Karen left the motel, whether it be for their allotted monthly days off or when they traveled back to
Down the line a bit, I left Glenden to work and live in Collinsville, in the coal-rich Bowen Basin, transferring across with Morris Catering to become chef/manager of the Mess, catering to the meal requirements of the single miners and the single men’s quarters of Collinsville Coal, another subsidiary of Mount Isa Mines.
Charles and Karen decided to take their vacation over the Christmas season and return again to
Christmas Day arrived. I had no guests staying at the motel and the restaurant was closed. This is the “norm” for a town like Glenden at that time of the year. All the” usual suspects” from “out-of-town” who were our regular motel and restaurant guests took their holidays over the Christmas period. Folk traveling to Glenden for personal reasons stayed in the homes of their friends or families. Glenden didn’t have a tourist trade. Our trade at the motel almost solely catered to businesses, companies and their executives etc., to the extent the restaurant opened from Monday night to Thursday night on any given week. We only operated the restaurant on Friday and Saturday evenings “upon request”.
Friends, whom I had originally met when they were guests of mine on Newry Island, and who lived in Glenden, invited me to their home for drinks on Christmas morning. My attempts to leave the premises became like a scene out of “The Great Escape”! Bundy refused to leave my side. He followed me from bedroom to bathroom, back to the bedroom, to the living room, to the kitchen…(and repeat that about a dozen times)! He stuck close to my heels. A moment came when he was out of sight, so I stealthily crept into my car. Gingerly, I placed the key in the ignition. Still no sign of him, I pulled out of the motel grounds. My car at the time was a Hyundai Excel hatchback, not a big car. As I turned into the main street of Glenden, out of the corner of my right eye, and level with it, I spied a loping cream image, a huge smile across its face, with hair streaming and tail waving wildly. It was Bundy. I drew to a stop, opened the passenger side door, and said resignedly, “Okay, Bundy! You win! Get in!” So Bundy came with me for Christmas drinks. He enjoyed the outing!
Christmas lunch was going to pose a major problem as I was spending it at the Glenden Workers’ Club. Arriving back at the motel after a couple of hours at Jan and Mick’s home, I turned on the air conditioning in the unit, and locked Bundy inside. It was an extremely hot summer’s day, that Christmas. After lunch, I was invited to the home of friends, but before going, I again returned to the motel, gathered up Bundy and he came along, too. He had a wonderful Christmas Day!
Animals really know how to creep into your heart and take hold of a huge slice of it, don’t they? Their love is unconditional. I believe, and I’m sure I can speak for all of us who love our pets, we return that love, unconditionally, too.
Losing a beloved pet is very traumatic. It is heartbreaking. Our pets are so much a part of our lives, of who we are. They become who we are…they “pick up” from us, stealing parts of our character.
I’ve shed many tears over my pets. I’ve loved them all dearly. I love my two cats, Remy and Shama. My pets have always been of major importance in my life since I was a very small child.
Liz…I shed tears for dear