So here’s Hank — actually, this is Hank back in July when I first brought him home. Now he’s a great, big, galumphing, lovely dog. His mother was a nice little merle Australian Shepherd, and all I know about his dad is that he was “the border collie next door.” Hank has border collie markings, but we think there’s also something bigger in the mix — my guess is Great Pyrennes — he’s got feet like frying pans, a coat so thick he slept outside all summer as a puppy, and a big square head on him.
He’s also the smartest dog I’ve ever had. Owen was smart, but spoiled and willful, and Raymond, my dear departed Raymond was a dog of much heart, but very little brain. At eight months old, this one is better behaved than both of them ever were. He comes when you call him. He sticks close in the woods. He was quiet on New Years day while we waited an hour at the cabin for a herd of 200 elk to move through (so magical neither of us even thought to get out a camera, sorry), and then, when we finally let him out, he sat on the top step of the back porch for a good five minutes, sniffing the air, trying to figure out what had happened.
He’s not perfect, of course. I was pretty annoyed when he chewed a hole in the carpet the other night. He and the kitty have an interspecies love that is quite something — there’s a lot of play fighting, some real fighting, and then she’ll sit on a kitchen chair, he’ll put his head on the seat, and she’ll lick his head like she’s his mother.
So here we are in 2015 and I still have things I want to blog about. I hope some of you might still be out there … because it seems that with oil prices in the basement, and jobs coming back, that everyone has forgotten the lessons of the recession. I swear, I had to edge past a Suburban-like truck in the grocery store parking lot this morning that was bigger than my first apartment in New York. And I’m still here, still in my wee house in Montana, still making things and trying to bring my carbon footprint down and reading and writing and rolling into a new year. We’ll see what it brings us …