Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Harry

1992 is the year I generally regard as the worst of my life. So many things went wrong that year that it would take too long to list them here. One of the first was the death in January of Virginia. She was our cat for 16 years.

The single bright spot for that year came in May. I was spending the weekend with my brother over in Sarasota. We called home to check in with my parents that, out of the blue, they had ended up with a dog.

Back in those days, my mother was still working at an Elementary School. And one morning, this little bedraggled dog had come onto campus. One of the custodians took him down the street thinking he was lost in the neighborhood. The dog came back. Eventually, he ended up in the office where they were trying to figure out who would look after him while they tried to locate the owner. My mother quickly volunteered and my father came over and picked him up. He was a Lhasa Apso, although he was in such a mess they it took some time for them to figure that out.

I still remember coming in to see him for the first time. I was expecting a Lhasa like I had seen in pictures. But since he had just had another bath, what I saw was a soaking wet dog that looked nothing like him. So it began.

Good times and bad times followed. Probably the worst was when he was injured out in the street by a neighbor’s car. He survived though and fully recovered. Lately though, we knew time was catching up with him. He was having more and more health problems. He was walking a bit more gingerly many times. But just Saturday Night, my brother and his bride-to-be threw a dinner party. And we took him with us up to Winter Haven. He was always a little inscrutable, but personally, I think he had a great time.

Tonight, I came home to find my mother in tears and my father upset. My father had gone to leave and somehow Harry had gotten from the front door to behind his van just when he went to backup. The vetenarian said he died instantly.

It is hard and I have written this whole entry with tears streaming down my face, but I am glad that his passing was quick. Harry, we will never forget you.