Saturday, March 19, 2011

City of Angels

Today Archer meets his maker. Or rather ... he meets another judge who will hopefully like him enough to give him his last two points to make him a Canadian Champion. I have no idea how he'll do actually, as far as I can tell dog show judging is a total shot in the dark and as in any other gamble 'you pays your money you takes your chances.' The last show Archer attended was in May of 2010. That is a long time for him to forget what to do. I can easily forgive him for being rusty and perhaps this show will be his warm up to get his brain back in gear. Either way he looks fabulous, he's game to try anything and I need a day out.

In other news, it is a sad day here in Pictou County. My friends Bill and Donna were my first taste of Nova Scotians who live in the province. All my experience was with Maritimers who had moved from here to Alberta and although they all talked about how the wonderful the east coast and how much they missed it - they were all living in the west.

When I came to New Glasgow to buy my house in 2008 I stayed with Bill and Donna as they had known my parents through the Pulis for several years, owned a young male named Trevor from my mom's kennel, and also showed and bred NS Duck Tolling Retrievers. It was a very generous offer since I had never talked to them and never met them before - they simply took it on faith that people who would sell them a nice Puli wouldn't have a psychopath for a daughter. I tell you; two nicer, more giving, helpful, and wonderful representatives of Nova Scotia cannot be found anywhere in this province.

I knew before arriving that Bill had been fighting with MS for about 15 years but the symptoms were under control and he was still very mobile. Once the Liberation surgery became available in the US Donna booked him in to help ease the symptoms of the disease. The surgery was scheduled for this spring but in the past year Bill's condition declined rapidly due to high levels of stress; he had to quit his job, Donna had to retire to take care of him and in February he was admitted to the hospital in a rapidly declining condition.

Today I learned that Bill died in the early hours of the morning. It is a tragic day for all who knew him and a desperate day for Donna who's best friend for life had to leave her far too early. My deepest condolences and sympathies to Donna who comes as close to a saint as a person is ever likely to meet. Bill laughed easily, smiled often, loved great food, and was a kind, gentle person - he left this earth far to soon.

Bill now walks with ease to meet his beloved dogs at The Bridge. Good bye Bill Peart - it was a pleasure to have known you.

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