16 June 2009

The train station is where?

The train station is where?
Originally uploaded by Nancy Dunne
I know it isn't Wednesday yet, but today is turning out to be a very peculiar Tuesday and I will most likely be occupied for the next few days with pre-vacation cleaning, laundry, and list making. Thought it best I go on and update you today.

The picture there is from Sunday's "short" walk down the canal from Saltaire to Bingley, and is the capture of the moment in time when I lost the will to live. Unlike Shipley and Saltaire, the train station in Bingley isn't right next to the canal, so it took us a bit of work to find it. Those that know Daisy will recognize that look on her face as that of a greyhound that has quit for the day. The walk was just lovely, and if you click on that photo you can see more of the ba-zillion pictures I took of tree roots, canal water, and other greenery.

Since last we spoke, Lettuce readers, we've heard officially from the CDC in Atlanta that Simon's plans to take H and J's ashes to be buried with my childhood dog Buffy (and my dad's childhood dog) in Cleveland are a go. Our vet here contacted "the Ministry" and got us covered on this side of the journey, so there shouldn't be any unpleasant surprises as far as that goes next week. Simon wants to take them back to the US, and I'm hoping that will bring him some closure. Daddy has agreed to go with him, which I think will be a good bonding experience for them as well.

Today's mail brought me a VERY special letter from my uncle in America. He hand wrote it, and while it basically just tells me what's going on in his part of the world, it is a precious reminder to me of my family and what is always waiting for me back home.

My first three months in the UK have been horrible and wonderful and exhausting and boring and just incredible. It's change. And change is good...and there are more changes to come to come...and I'm ready.

"You're right, things are gonna be different. But different doesn't always mean bad. It just means different." -Scrubs

13 June 2009


Just wanted to share this great photo that my father in law took of my two sisters in law, Sarah (L) and Louise (R), at our UK reception last Saturday. These two went above and beyond to throw us a fantastic "do!" Thanks so much y'all...I'm so proud to have you as my new sisters!!

10 June 2009

Week Nine Update

This past Saturday my sisters in law Louise and Sarah threw a wonderful reception for me and Simon here in the UK. It was a bit overwhelming, in that there were lots of new faces there to meet, but it was also wonderful to be so accepted into not only my husband's family but his circle of friends as well. Cheers all around, y'all! One thing I especially loved was the food on the buffet. The only thing missing, seriously, was Yorkshire pudding. Pork pies, mini scotch eggs/egg biters, bread and butter, and trifle. I love that it was very representative not only of England but of the particular part of the country where we live.

I had some doubts earlier this week about my place in this country and specifically in Yorkshire when the European election results came in, but I've had a good think about it since and I've decided that I love where I live. The people around me are real, genuine even to a fault, and they have all been so very nice to me. Also, if I understand the results correctly, there were two specific parts of "Yorkshire and theHumber" that had a large hand in voting in the British National Party and neither of them was Keighley . I was guilty of doing the same thing that I find annoying in others...painting an entire area with the same brush instead of seeing the individual parts that make up the whole. There are a lot of very progressive, intelligent, forward-thinking people in Yorkshire, just like there are everywhere. Sadly, there are also closed-minded, xenophobic people everywhere too.

The big news of the week, though, is that yesterday I took my first solo train trip yesterday. Although it was only to Bradford, it was all by myself and to a station I've only been to once prior. I popped over to go to a fantastic pet shop that Simon and I visited on my first trip over in 2007 so that I could get some nail trimming implements of doom for the cat. You'd think that I spent the entire trip berating myself for not doing it sooner, for being unnecessarily cautious, but I didn't. Instead I thoroughly enjoyed my new found freedom (and talked on twitter/posted pics to twitpic till I killed the battery in my phone) and made the entire journey in just over two hours. I can't say that I could have done that faster with a car.

I've applied for a job and for a BSL course at a college in Leeds...in two weeks I'll be visiting home...Daisy and Mills seem healthy and happy....dare I say all feels right? I still miss Hunky more than I can put into words...his loss makes Jeany's absence more acute and more bearable, all at the same time. But we're moving on; books to write, Yorkshire to explore.

I'm resolving to do better with the blog too...weekly updates on Wednesdays at the least. Hang in there, Lettuce Readers, the blog is heading back to normal, whatever that is for me anyway.

03 June 2009

Fond A Hunk
17 July 1996 - 29 May 2009

He was supposed to be with me forever. The idea of life without him there, smiling, rooing, ears madly unfurled...it was just not possible. And now here I am. He's gone. Who am I now?

"The puppy was born on a farm in Florida." That is the first sentence in his book, the book that let me share him with the whole world. That book let people know my simple, special, old soul as though he was sleeping on their sofa or nudging their hands for another scratch or ear rub. Even though every message of condolence breaks my heart, it simultaneously amazes me at the impact that one dog had on so many.

I hadn't wanted a big dog when Hunky came into my life. I was afraid of big dogs, to be quite honest. But the day that I met him and looked into those brown eyes I knew he was coming home with me. I have Hunky to thank for so much in my life. Without him, I wouldn't have so many of my friends that are fellow greyhound people. I wouldn't have been able to perform with the Carolina and Georgia Renaissance Festivals. I wouldn't have published books. Most importantly, if I hadn't had Hunky in my life, I wouldn't have had Henry, Jeany, Profile, Bo, Lizzard, or any of my foster dogs. Without Hunky, I also wouldn't have had my psycho precious puppy girl Daisy.

He was my heart dog, but I came in second place in his heart. Hunky fell hard for Jeany from the very first day she came to live with us, and he never looked back. I think that his soul died the day she did, and as soon as he had a chance to go be with her he took it. I just consider myself the luckiest person on the earth that I got to be the one that took care of him, loved him, and lived with him for the nine short years we were all together.

Go find your girl, Bubby. I will put my heart back together, and look for your stars dancing together in the night sky.

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