Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Where, oh where, has my little dog gone?

Well, our 17-year-old basset hound Sadie has been MIA for over a week now. We've been keeping a weather eye for her, but no dice. She definitely had a good life here in the country.

Many a rabbit she chased. Seeing that dog at full speed was a thing of unsurpassed beauty. Sadie had ears so long as a puppy that she'd trip on them walking uphill. She had these great crooked legs with big old paws, as well as that lovely mass of excess flesh that helped her oh-so-capable nose work its wonders.

As an adult, Sadie's bark was a deep, chesty one, and it was always fun to hear her get excited when on the hunt in her younger years. Unleash the hounds!!! She definitely slowed down as age did its thing, and she eventually developed a whole network of nests and napping spots that would be carefully cycled throughout the day (adjusted for wind, of course) as the sun and shade moved across the yard.

Being gone for over a year to the South Pole made the changes that advanced age had wrought upon our little friend pretty obvious to me. While I was away she lost most of her sight and hearing, and she would do a lot of walking in circles out in the yard. It was sad to see that the old hound that would come put her chins on your leg, when sitting outside, in search of food or scratchin' had changed so much. There were no more ecstatic greetings with the tail wagging the dog as you got out of your car. She lived a long life, and I choose to believe she decided to check out on her own terms. The little yapping puppy and the wizened hound will live on in our hearts and memories. Farewell friend.

Other than all the smoke from pastures being burned in the area and finishing my income tax preparation, there is not much else to report from here. Spring is trying to shoulder winter aside, but we have been having some relatively cold temperatures at night. I'm still essentially in the same holding pattern on the job hunt. Oh well, chalk it up as a learning experience.

We have an unknown distance yet to run, an unknown river to explore. What falls there are, we know not; what rocks beset the channel, we know not; what walls ride over the river, we know not. Ah, well! We may conjecture many things.
~John Wesley Powell, The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons


Lilly said...

Hi Ethan, thought I would send this link along in case you have missed it.

Also, Werner Herzog's film "Encounters at the end of the world" will soon be at our local art house cinema. Apparently the underwater footage from the pole is particularly good. Seen it?

EthanG said...

Yeah, the world's going to be quite a zoo, and unfortunately we probably won't leave terra incognita australis out of it. Chile and/or Argentina actually flew pregnant women down to Antarctica to try and establish some sort of genealogical claim to territory sometime in the past. Herzog's film is an interesting take of Antarctic culture, but doesn't come close to being representative of the diversity of experiences and people that actually make it to the Ice. The underwater footage is indeed remarkable. I've seen it, and was actually working as a dishwasher in McMurdo the summer Herzog and crew were there filming. Before our (American) Thanksgiving dinner or Christmas dinner they were filming all of us kitchen staff as we toiled away to provide everybody else on station their holiday meal. It didn't make the cut into the film, though. Oh well, my 15 minutes remain unspent.