Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Goodbye to our Dearest Friend

Saba 2000-2017
(Saba at Age 6)

On Monday, on the first full moon of spring and the first day of Passover, we said goodbye to Saba.  She'd been part of our family for nearly seventeen years.  Since we have no children, you can imagine what she means to us.

Saba in Burke, Vermont, age 2

Saba joined us in New Mexico in late winter of 2001, rescued from hunting scraps at a trading post on the Navajo Reservation.  Our vet thought she was about six months old, which would put her birth year in 2000.  From there, she traveled with us to new homes in Vermont, again in New Mexico, then Campobello Island and finally Arizona.  Her favorite places had snow and cool weather and grassy trails.  She did the cross-country trip from the East to the Southwest and back again with us every time we made the trip, which was almost every year.  She also met my students in all my plein air painting workshops, making many, many friends along the way.

Saba, Age 11

This morning, we took a memorial walk.  Spring flowers are plentiful this year on the mesa behind our house:  desert marigold, feather dalea, globe mallow, purple filaree, blackfoot daisy and Indian paintbrush.  Down by the creek, a pair of ducks had staked out their territory.  Surprisingly, they didn't seem to mind and even approached us.  The night before, we'd taken a walk, and they were there then, too, sleeping on a rock in their part of the creek, waking only to look at us.  This may sound strange and New Agey, but we suspect they may have a message for us.

Now we are in a land between numbness and grief.  We will journey out of this place some day, but we will always remember Saba.  We gave her the best life a dog could possibly have, and she gave us much love in return.

Saba at Age 16, Almost 17
April 9, 2017

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