Saturday, October 2, 2010

Goodbye Buddy

This morning I had to say goodbye to Buddy, who's been a part of our family for 10 years. He became suddenly ill 3 days ago and got rapidly worse. Some sort of auto-immune hemocratic disease, apparently common to spaniels, that causes the body to start rejecting the red blood cells. Severly weakened by jaundice, he stopped responding to the treatments and we made the difficult decision to end his suffering.

4 days ago he was his usual, hyperactive self, bouncing off the back deck and tussling with his brother. This morning, my daughter and I held him as he struggled just to stand. I held his head as he passed. I'm sorry, Buddy.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Change is good!

So, for the first time in 24 years, I bought a new vehicle. I've always bought late model used since my '87 Nissan pickup blew the motor shortly after the warranty expired. After 5 years and 110k miles with my trusty Dodge Durango (originally purchased with 30k miles, so was up to 140k, a long life in my neck of the woods), it was time for something new. Since I sold my moderately heavy boat recently, I was free to get something that didn't require being able to tow 5,000 lbs. This lead me to go a little "hog wild", so to speak :-)>.

I've always liked Jeeps, their rugged looks and durability, but hated the bumpy nature of the short-wheel base on the highway (which, unfortunately, is where the majority of my driving is done). Enter the 4 door version introduced in 2007. This longer wheel base is much smoother, but still retains the off-road capabilties. Of course I went with the rag top and 6-speed stick, as the former was appealing, and the latter just makes sense to anyone that goes off-road.

As to buying new, well the price point was what made the difference. In pricing out used models with 30-40k miles on them, the savings was less than $1,000. That's not much, so I made the decision to just buy new for once. Now I can't wait to go south again.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

RIP Pudgie

Today we lost our oldest pet, Pudgie, at the age of 14. He led an uncomplicated life, even for a cat: never outdoors, never sick, and the dominate male pet in the house (even the dogs gave way to him). Part Mainecoon, part barn cat, he's been with us since he was 8 weeks old (even then he was chunky, hence the name). Pudgie loved being the center of attention, seeked out those willing to scratch him and tolerating virtually any indignity imposed on him by little children.
Pudgie recently lost a third of his body weight, became anemic and dehydrated. The vet ruled out the normal "geriatric cat issues" such as parasites, kidney disease, and diabetes, but was unable to figure out what exactly was going on. This morning he was listless and wheezing, and apparently had a seizure before collapsing and passing on quickly. My daughter, Kelly, witnessed his final moments, something I'm sure will stick with her for many years.