Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Bonnie-Belinda is our world Tuesday

On our way home!
It is Our World Tuesday time. Tuesdays and every other day, these days, our world is white and brown.
After the death of our beloved Golden Retriever, Lindy, last month, my husband's friend Sam, a dog-owner who lives across the lane, suggested we get another dog sooner rather than later.
Well, we had adopted Lindy from the wonderful SOS (Save Old Souls) in Medicine Hat, Alberta, so I checked their website. However, they had only one dog awaiting adoption...a large male, while we were hoping for a somewhat smaller female.
So I then looked up the SPCA website, where I saw Bonnie. I could not resist her sweet face and beautiful eyes.
At home—I can see more if
I sit on the arm of the couch!
So we were off to the SPCA, where we were introduced to her—a sweet but very shy little girl whose four puppies had been already been adopted, leaving her at the SPCA for two months. During that time, she had accepted the SPCA, with all the other dogs, cats, rabbits, and other critters, as her home. The staff and volunteers loved Bonnie, but no visitors offered her a forever home.
Until we came along.
She was brought out to meet us, crouching close to the floor, shy and uncertain, clearly more at ease with SPCA staff than with anyone else.
And at that time, we were certainly "anyone else".
We kept our visit brief, but promised we'd be back.
The next day, when we visited, it was suggested that one or both of us take her out for a walk. Off we went, with Dick walking Bonnie on a leash attached to a harness, and with me tagging along to offer suggestions (which Dick calmly ignored, as usual).
We were very grateful Bonnie was wearing a harness because that little girl could really pull, and didn't necessarily want to go where we were taking her but, still, she obviously loved going walking. The Medicine Hat SPCA is in an industrial area, which meant few pedestrians but quite a few large, noisy trucks. However, that little dog paid the trucks no heed.
A walk? You want to
go for a walk? Me, too!
It is believed she's part British Bulldog, and her legs are very short, so my favourite Bonnie-thing was watching her jump over puddles. So cute! (I wish we had a video.)
The next day, our friends Gayle and Larry came to the SPCA to meet her, because they had always cared for Lindy when we travelled overseas.
As we took Bonnie out for a walk, Gayle fell in love with her, just as I had done. Dick and Larry were pretty much willing to do whatever Gayle and I wanted.
And we wanted Bonnie.
The next day I started on the necessary paperwork, and yesterday I went to the Redcliff village office to get her dog-tag.
When she came home with us, Dick suggested we call her Bonnie-Belinda, so we'd have a remembrance of our golden girl Lindy in her name.
Now she is our bonny Bonnie-Belinda who, much to my delight, has decided she is my dog.
Before she came home, I had prepared not one, not two, but three different dog-beds in various parts of the house...and Bonnie ignored all three in favour of my bed. I'm not particularly delighted with her sleeping with me on my rather narrow bed, spreading her rather heavy self across my legs so I can't escape. "Claustrophobia city" as my brother and I would have said when we were young, and I can say it again now.
Therefore (as any dog-lover would understand) I have decided I'll buy a larger bed. There was a time when my husband would have thought me crazy to do that, but after all the wonderful years we had with Lindy, he understands that I would do or buy anything for my bonny Bonnie-Belinda.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Something blue for Friday

Sea meets sky in the south Pacific.

Sharing with the popular meme Skywatch Friday, where you can see beautiful sky photos from all over the world.
Hosted by Yogi's Den.

Monday, March 13, 2017

A rant...what to do? How to do it?

Can we at least try?
Try what?
Try doing something to help those far, far less fortunate.
As Canadians, we find ourselves on the horns of a dilemma.
We know we want to help all the women, men and children suffering in the horrendous food crisis in Africa. We want to help because they are all (all!) starving, while we bloggers are well fed.

We want to donate, but to which charity? and what will that charity do with our money?
How do we know which of those will best use our donation?

Therein lies the rub, as the ubiquitous "they" used to say. Do those charities, the ones we most admire, use our donations wisely or are they perhaps using our money to overpay money-hungry executives?

To explain...yesterday I stumbled upon a website (a motorcycle website, so you know I had to have stumbled upon it). The author was discussing well-known charities and how their funds (our funds) are being dispersed.
So, let’s look at this author's numbers and,  for purposes of this discussion only, assume his numbers are somewhat close to today’s truth...

Motorcyle Blogger didn’t pretend to be any kind of expert on the subject, but he says the worst offender in money distribution is UNICEF! Imagine!
His blog states that only 14 cents, out of every dollar donated, will go to those in need, while the rest of the money (donors' money) is making millionaires of the charity’s top executives.
According to him (and, again, I cannot verify the numbers) the second worst offender is the American Red Cross, with only 39 cents out of every dollar going to charity. The Red Cross. The holy grail of charities. Less than half of the money donated. (I don't what it is in Canada, probably close.)
Next, the religion-based, do-good United Way wisely pays its president only $375,000, not to mention many expense benefits. Somehow, however, only 30 cents of the United Way’s dollar reaches people in crisis.
Fourth on the list of big spenders is the president of World Vision (Canada) who receives a home with all expenses paid, maid service, pool maintenance, private schools for his children...the list goes on, leaving about 52 cents of every dollar available for charitable causes. Well, that's not too bad...a little more than half, but...
Finally, the author of the motorcycle website identifies an organization using 93 cents out of every dollar for charity. Yes, almost a whole dollar “goes back out to local charity causes” if you donate to the Salvation Army.
Gotta love the Sally Ann. No denying that, drums and tubas and all.

However, dear Sally, local charity causes, as much as they do need the money, cannot solve the burning question now, in March, 2017... how best to feed Africa's starving children, many of them infants, plus their families, without any executives receiving absurd amounts of our money?
We’ve all seen those children on TV, absolutely skeletal from lack of food, many of them dying every hour, and their parents are in worse shape because they feed the children what little they manage to scrounge and eat little or nothing themselves.
When photos of starving children are shown on our televisions, do we change the channel? Do we go to the kitchen for coffee or maybe a stiffer drink to numb our charitable instincts? 
What do we do?
Younger Canadians can probably go to Africa, and perhaps even should, just as North American youths went to Israel to work in kibbutzes in the 60s, but where to go, exactly? What to do there? How to help millions of people? Young people with hearts and minds full of goodwill don't know how to do it.
Syria, across the Red Sea from Africa
...years of war, years of starvation
Senior citizens cannot simply don a backpack and go to Africa in person, so that lets me, most of my friends, and several of my relatives out of the long trek. in Canada, as in Europe, we have accepted Syrian refugees, and have taken on a responsibility. Try as we might, we can’t teach English to Syrians if we are in Africa helping to stem the tide of starvation.
What to do? What to do?
Do we weep and wring our hands at our helplessness? Do we ignore the cost of a charity's religious recruiting? Or do we embrace it because 52 cents per dollar is more than the other guys?
Or do we try to find a way to send help, that 90-cents-out-of-every-dollar kind of help, right now, today?
I don’t know, but I’m putting this out there for all the world to see, because my fellow bloggers are good people, I know they are.
(Many thanks to for that thought-provoking post, and for the cost comparisons. I don’t know when it was written, or even how much of it is true today, but I do know a good person when I see his writing.)
Linking with Lady Fi's popular meme Our World Tuesday

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Early morning repartee at our house

Lindy some years ago,
during a walk around the coulee.
(One morning, soon after our darlin’ dog Lindy died, when neither my husband nor I happened to be in fine form.)

He had been up for oh, probably a couple of hours, but I had just managed to struggle out of bed, get myself a cup of coffee, and go in search of him.
My computer was acting up, you see, and I couldn’t get online, so I was looking woebegone.
No dog+no internet=no nothing, in my opinion. Instead of hitting the computer with a stick, I went to face him in his lair: his home office furnished with two computers.
Surprisingly, after only a few moans, groans, and grumbles from me, he said I could use one of them to go online.
That perked me up a bit, until he refused to log himself out of Facebook.
“You have to log out,” said I, “or else I won’t be able to log in.”
After a few attempts to prove himself right, he had to concede. Okay, he would allow himself to be forced to log out, but he wouldn’t enjoy it.
I went back to the dining room.
No sooner had I started my second coffee, than along came Himself, to begin (without a word) rifling around in the pile of stuff’n’junk on my side of the table.
“What are you doing?” asked I.
“Looking for my clipboard,” replied he.
“Huh?” asked I.
“My little clipboard. You borrowed it,” said he.
“I did?”
 "Did I?” I repeated, always quick with early-morning repartee.
“Yes, you borrowed for your trip to Scotland last fall.”
“Oh...” (more brilliant repartee) “...that thing. I hate that thing, but you insisted I take it because you said it would make my trip easier.
“And it didn’t help, you know. It drove me crazy, sticking up out of my purse, or else lost in the bottom of my shoulder bag.
“I didn’t want to take it, you know. I did say I hate that thing, didn’t I?
“Besides, it can’t be on this table, because I cleaned it off for Christmas dinner.”
“Well, I want the clipboard now,” said he (Mr. Oblivious).
“I’m sure you do, but I have no idea where it might be. I haven’t even finished my first cup of coffee today, and already you’re asking me about something of yours, which I didn’t want to use, and which you made me take anyway, ’way back in October!”
Not getting to that happy place of marital bliss this morning, I can tell.
Then he went...out the door, and into his car.
“Goodbye,” said I, not really meaning the ‘good’ part.
After a strenuous day yesterday, I was planning to mostly nap today, but maybe his little clipboard will launch itself out onto the floor in front of me on my way to bed—then I can produce it, triumphantly, pretending I had actually looked for the silly thing. I really don't know where to look.

Written by me, somewhat fictionalized, and inspired, perhaps, by the fact that I’ve been re-reading books by the late, wonderful Stuart MacLean, a Canadian icon: a writer and humourist with a long career in broadcasting and print.
RIP, Stuart, and if you see Lindy up there, give her a cuddle from us.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Lindy says goodbye

I don't know how many times I've posted photos of our beloved dog Lindy. Dozens, for sure, and many more.
I might post old photos of her again,
but there will be no new ones.

Lindy Davies-Schear left us last week
after a brief but incurable illness.
Her veterinarian came to the house
and told us what we already knew:
there was no hope of recovery from kidney failure.
We will be forever grateful
that we had the opportunity to adopt
our wonderful girl, because she has changed our lives forever.
She was sweet, pretty, fun, amusing...and kind:
Lindy didn't have a mean bone in her body.

I am sharing this post with Lady Fi's wonderful, dog-full meme

Our World Tuesday

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Proprietorial puppy-paw

When our beautiful Golden girl first came to live here, she wanted to be close to one of us. This is a photo I took, looking down at Lindy's paw on my knee. I've always treasured this. It isn't great photography, maybe not even good photography, but there is love in this photo.