I’ve just checked the date of my last post, I can’t believe almost a month has passed.
Not a pleasant month I will add. The initial feeling of peace and calm at Jasp’s passing, soon moved though the normal stages of grief, which anyone who has lost a beloved pet will understand.
Even though everyone around me was telling me I’d done the right thing for him, it still didn’t stop the arguments one side of my brain was having with the other 😦
Trying to get some sort of normality back in my life was difficult, he’d left an enormous hole.
On July 19th I answered the phone from the vet receptionist. I’d had Jasp cremated, so I knew before any words were spoken what was going to be said, but it still didn’t make it easy to hear.
“Oh hello Mrs H, I’m just phoning to let you know Jasper is ready to collect”
T was away for the weekend, and I couldn’t face collecting him alone. “Don’t worry, whenever you feel ready” she replied.
So on Monday 22nd, fully composed, I walked into the vets.
“I’ve come to collec……” was as far as I got. I took a deep breath and tried again. “I’ve come to collect Jas…..” It was a good job the receptionist understood my blubbering………. “Jasper? I’ll go and get him for you” she said.
I held it together long enough to pay my bill, then walked over to the car, sat down and placed the small oblong box wrapped in brown paper on my knee…………Was this all that was left of my beautiful 31kg dog?
It was the next day before I could bring myself to remove the paper, and the first time I can remember having a parcel that I wasn’t eager to open.
Not long after I adopted Jasper, I’d bought a model of a Pyrenean dog and painted it to look like him, rather fittingly it now stands on Jaspers box.
I’d been putting off the journey to Yorkshire to visit my mum, who was now settled as a temporary resident in a nursing home, but as one or two things needed sorting out, on 31st July we bit the bullet and set off in torrential rain.
Waking to a warm dry day on August 1st (Yorkshire Day), we decided a walk around Swinsty reservoir would be nice.
3.3 miles around, Jasper never did get to walk the whole way, but it brought back memories of Harry, who in September 1999 helped pull my dad up the slope onto the road that divides Swinsty and Fewston reservoir.
T checking to see if my dad’s seat, which looks out over Swinsty reservoir, needs repairing.
We popped into Knaresborough on the bus for the evening.
A popular view of the rail bridge over the River Nidd taken from the castle grounds.
….and from the other side, the view from the Harrogate/Knaresborough road bridge.
After a visit to a couple of real ale pubs and a meal at the Dropping Well Inn.
Sitting in the pub garden, at last I felt I was beginning to unwind a little.
Whether it was because on my previous visits to Yorkshire, I’d often left Jasp at home with T, or whether it was the relaxing alcoholic beverages, who knows, but that empty longing had gone until……
…..we returned home on Saturday 3rd.
I walked into the house and the emptiness hit me, my big hairy dog wasn’t there to greet me with a nuzzle of his wet nose 😦
Sunday and Monday are best forgotten.
Tuesday I knew there was just one place I could go that would lift my spirits, and that is Cleeve Hill.
Happy memories? beautiful views? I don’t know what or why this place has such a pull on me, it doesn’t matter whether there’s rain, snow, gales or blue skies….whatever it is, it works 🙂
A few of the local residents.
T and Cindy looking out to the horizon.
The tree, I think I’d mentioned before, I’ve never seen this tree in leaf before.
Surrounded by a recently built dry stone wall, a big improvement on the ugly railings that were there before. There are smooth sections where plaques can be added commemorating loved ones (at a cost of course), the monies going towards the conservation and upkeep of the area.
It’s apparent I’m not the only one that finds this place special.
One of the things I found a great comfort and helped me come to terms with losing Harry was to make a video of photographs.
Cleeve managed to lift my spirits once more, so I’ve done the same with Jasp.
The song is Let the Four Winds Blow by Robert Plant.
Perhaps one day, I may feel able to scatter Jasp’s ashes on Cleeve, and let the four winds blow.