Tlellagraph: Death, life, and the moon behind a cloud

By Janet Rigg

One of our pack members has left us for the great farm in the sky. Jack, aka “Jack Sparkle,” aka “Sabrina’s Baby,” aka “That Very Large Dog” succumbed to a rare form of cancer on Thursday, Feb. 1.

His prognosis was accurate when he was diagnosed a few months ago. He didn’t have long, and would be pain-free and happy until there would be a sudden decline. And that’s exactly what happened. Jack was a happy dog until a few days before his passing.

I took my dog Lola to say goodbye to Jack the night before, and my daughter. My daughter wished there was no such thing as sickness, an earnest thought and a simple solution. But that isn’t life, I said. There’s a circle, death brings more life. But it certainly doesn’t feel okay when it is our companion that completes the circle.

We weren’t the only ones to go visit Jack. Others knew how much Jack meant to Sabrina. And that’s how we do it in Tlell, although a special mention has to go to Sabrina’s South Island Friend, Della, for being with her throughout the whole night and the next day. Thanks for being there.

This one out, that one in… Tlell also welcomed a new puppy this week. Olli is a cute little fluffball — a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever — and joins the Oike-Dyment family. He joins Silver and Jura in the class of 2017/2018. I’m not sure if he’s met Jura yet, but he met Silver today and Silver was scared of him. That’s how brave my new dog is.

Though I could fill this whole column writing on the canines of Tlell, there is one more story to tell this week.

It started when the full moon, blue moon, super moon, red moon of the lunar eclipse slipped over the horizon. There was a person standing on the beach watching, in her mind, because she was actually inside on the couch watching TV and had forgot to get to the beach to watch the moon rise. So it was actually a few hours later that she was reminded by that other person, and she set her alarm for a time even later than that.

She woke up before her alarm, one minute before, which saved her from hearing that annoying sound. She woke up and went to the bathroom window and was pleased to see the moon nearly all in shadow, just a bright swath on the bottom side remaining.

She got up and went downstairs, because it didn’t seem spiritual enough to watch the eclipse from a bathroom window. She went outside, so there was nothing between her and this celestial moment. She wanted to Be. Right. There.

She watched, and not much changed. It was taking longer than she imagined, and how she remembered last watching a lunar eclipse from the roof of her Montreal townhome. Memories are wrong, she thought, always false. And she watched some more, and still nothing much seemed to change.

If she looked away for awhile, and then looked back, progress was noticeable. She did this a few times, but there wasn’t much else of interest in the blackness to look at. So she looked back at the moon.

It was getting closer, the full eclipse.

Closer still.

Go away cloud… oh no.

Cloud!

Really?!

The full eclipse was blotted out by the one cloud in the sky. It seemed no matter how hard she tried to have nothing between her and this great super full red and blue moon, the universe had other plans. And the universe had a cloud. The cloud that was now in front of the moon.

She went back to bed, with a small smile at the irony. Sometimes we try, sometimes we anticipate, sometimes we hope, and sometimes it just doesn’t work out.

And that’s how it was watching the lunar eclipse in Tlell. Email me at sewnart@haidagwaii.net and tell me a story.

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