Finally, we are back in
our beloved mountains.
The first glimpse of the
lake in the distance -- a deep blue gem sparkling in the bright
mountain sun, nestled in the V of the mountains on each side of Big
Bear Valley -- enraptured me. I was tempted to stop on the roadside,
but I was in such a need to be there.
What a sight for my sore
eyes. A few minutes later, we crossed the dam, and here we
are. Ahh, it is oh, so peaceful here. Big Bear Lake is my
It's an unseasonably
warm -- almost summer's -- day up here, as it is down the
hill. DH is happily in shorts, his most preferred article of
clothing. Never mind that he's layered on top with a polo
shirt and sweatshirt.
Starved, we settled the
dogs into the cabin after their quick potty visit to the little
woods in back, then scurried over to Abe-san's
and Kay-san's for sushi. Tomo prepared our orders; I had
sake (salmon), mirugai (giant clam) and salmon skin temaki (hand
roll) sushi. And DH had the same with the addition of an order
of tako (octopus) sushi.
I just read my previous
sushi entry. What creatures of habit we are. It's the
identical sushi selection as my last entry. As always, I
was impressed how five delectable morsels can so delight my
palate. Some habits just make good sense.
Earlier, we'd quickly
noted that our mountain neighbors, Jeff
were up, as their garage door was open, and DH and I knowingly
smiled at each other. Driving back from the sushi bar, we
drove through the village and in the window of the corner T-shirt
shop, my eyes chanced upon a night T-shirt with a picture of a cat
with these words alongside it:
If you want a
friend, get a dog.
Apt words. We were
on our way home to meet a new friend.
With gladdened tummies,
we ostensibly took O and Freddy B for their neighborhood walk,
knowing full well that we were making a beeline to the red cabin
across the way for a treat.
And here's our treat:
What a Face! Che
Earlier in the month,
Jeff and Claudia emailed us about their newest family member with
photos, and we were so looking forward to meeting her in
person. In dog. Lucy is all we expected and more.
What a face! As
the Italians would say: Che
Faccia! Lucy is adorably sweet-faced. Lovable and
full of snuggles, she won our hearts.
Yup. That is her name.
Lucy for short. She reminds of us so much of our
little O, sweet-faced -- with a streak of the devil behind that
cherubic look. And like O, she is a confident dog. No
Between their Lucy and
our Fred, we'll just have to rename O to Ethel and Oscar to
Ricky. You know, Lucy & Ricky Ricardo and their best
friends, Fred & Ethel
Oscar, as in Oscar
To think, just two
months ago, we -- Jeff, Claudia, Oscar, DH and I -- had shed tears over the
passing of their lovable black mutt, Buster, who was once upon a
distant time in dog years, a pound puppy. Gentle Buster of the sweet
temper, who loved to play fetch with you with his rubber chicken
toy, had passed gently while they traveled as a family to the
Pacific Northwest, visiting human family over the
Among us, we have a
significant dog history. Jeff and Claudia vicariously experienced
the heartbreaks of our Happy
and Laki losses, six months apart, three years ago.
Speaking from that jolting experience, we urged them to look for
another dog to help fill the huge void, if not for them, for Oscar
who was left without his best buddy.
They needed no urging,
as you can see:
Jeff, Oscar, Lucy
They plan to bury
Buster's ashes in the little woods in their back yard, where he had
spent many happy hours romping with Oscar, chasing squirrels,
rolling in the dirt, and just being a dog. It'll be good for
all. Happy and Laki are buried in the flower garden alongside
the yard alcove across from our porch swing, where I immensely enjoy
I also think Buster is
delighted with the newest addition to the family. Loving his family
and being the dog he was, he would want them to move on and give
another little pup a chance for his humans' unadulterated love, just
as he had been so generously gifted in his life.
Claudia and Jeff think
that Buster didn't waste any time returning to Planet Earth.
One day at their down-the-hill home in San Clemente, Jeff hollered
to Claudia to come over and look out the window with him. In
the neighbor's yard was a brand-new pound puppy rescue. She
looks exactly like Buster. So much so, that when Jeff dug out
a puppy picture of Buster at about the same age, their neighbor was
incredulous as well. Same coloring. Same face. Same one
ear up, one ear down. To top it off, this pound puppy was rescued
from the same animal rescue/shelter as Buster.
If there remains any
doubt, the neighbor had named the little puppy, Angel. Of
course, we, who know Buster, know that her real name is Angel
>> Click on the
search page and type in Jeff (or Claudia) and previous entries
on them will come up. They and their dogs are very much a part
of our lives.
"Life is a Gift."
you silver linings,
P.S. If you would
like to share a portion of yourself with words, in response to
this journal entry, you may do it here.
only gift is a portion of thyself..."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
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