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So Long Old Friend

Thursday, July 7, 2016

For those who noticed, I love my dog, Daisy. She was one of those dogs that God sends you when you need a dog. She came to us some months after we lost our 28 year old son. We needed her. God knew, but we didn't. We'd lost our beagle a couple of years earlier and it was so traumatic for the family, we decided not to get another one.

God knew better. My wife was caring for a senior lady, Miss Mary Bob (I kid you not). I helped out by pressure washing the black mold off the house siding. I was carrying the equipment back to the shed through Mary Bob's overgrown backyard. Her lawn guy had been deported to Mexico and hadn't swum back yet so the grass was kind of high.

These two black ears came rising up out of the grass followed by this scrawny little black dog about 5 months old. She came up to me and threw herself on her back at my feet. I could see her ribs and fleas all over her belly.

I said, "God, I just can't." You see I'd already heard that still small voice. I was just resisting. I put away the pressure washer, turned away so I couldn't see her sad little face and went back to the house. I climbed up on the porch and turned around to sit down and pull my shoes off.

And there she at, looking at me with this lop-sided grin. Then, I swear to you, she came over to me, put her paws in my lap and laid her head down with her ear on my heart. That was all it took. I called, "Help!" because I knew it was over. My wife rushed out on the porch thinking I'd lopped off some body part or another. When she saw the little dog giving me a doggy hug, she knew instantly what had happened.

"Do you think she'll eat some tuna?"  she asked.

We both sprang into action. Mary Bob donated $50 for a trip to the vet for shots. We invited her to jump in the truck and she went along like she'd been jumping into our car all her life. My wife, Sheila, gave her a thorough bath and flea treatment and in a few months, she'd fattened her up.

We tested names for her. We settled on Daisy because she sprang up from a field like a little flower. She was the best dog I've ever had. She had one accident after we brought her home. I fussed at her a little and she never had another. House-broken in one! She loved to run. She made me start taking walks. God knows I needed that. My wife has occasional panic attacks. Daisy would come get me when she did and then would sit close beside her till it passed.

She slept at the foot of our bed for most of her life. She demanded lap time at least once a day. She was my friend.

On April 19, my friend passed away after a mercifully short illness. We were devastated. She was like our child and I miss her. My wife flew back to Louisiana to help her family and I spent the next six weeks at home alone without my furry friend. We traveled a lot of miles together on foot and by car. She used to sit between us in the seat and if one of us wasn't petting or scratching her, she'd put her paw on our arm and pull it toward her till we relented and gave her attention.

She was a lovely creature and I miss her terribly. I do believe that if God can give us eternal life, he can probably manage it with a dog, especially one who was as loved as my little Daisy was. Apparently, God has said he will deny his children no good thing. Daisy was a good thing - the best thing that God could have given me after my wife and children. I will see her soon. Of that I am confident.

Tom King
© 2016


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Playing Since: 1971
Experience Level: Purty Good

[Socializing] [Helping]

Occupation: writer

Gender: Male
Age: 70

My Instruments:
Goya Classical Guitar, Pirles longneck banjo, Aria 5 string banjo, Ovation 6 string guitar, mandolin, harmonica, ukulele, bodhran, bones, penny whistle

Favorite Bands/Musicians:
Clancy Brothers, Earl Scruggs, Steve Martin, Connie Dover, Emmy Lou Harris and anyone, Willie Nelson and anyone, Pete Seeger, Arlo Guthrie, Gordon Lightfoot, Alison Kraus, Nickel Creek, Joe Bethancourt, Cherish the Ladies

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Profile Info:
Visible to: Public
Created 8/26/2008
Last Visit 7/7/2016

I grew up in the small Seventh-day Adventist college town of Keene, Texas where I graduated in 1976 with a degree in English-Communications. I married a Scots-Irish-Indian woman from Monroe, Louisiana and raised three children and some cats and dogs, birds and fish. I’ve taught school, taught swimming, canoeing and sailing, knot tying, camping and astronomy for kids. I’ve water skied on canoe paddles, assorted bits of lumber and my elbows. I have a couple of canoes and a catamaran, 3 guitars, two banjos, a dulcimer, a mandolin, a fiddle, 2 recorders, a penny whistle, fife, a bag of harmonicas, a bodhrain, pair of bones and a jaw harp or two – all of which I play badly. I’ve helped start up 6 nonprofit organizations in 25 years and raised millions of dollars none of which ever managed to stick to my bank account. I’ve won awards for documentary screen-writing, published poetry and short stories and a book on how to organize a charity golf tournament. I was appointed to a two year term on the Public Transportation Advisory Committee for the Great State of Texas by the Governor and I work as an advocate for seniors, people with disabilities and low income families. I’m a Reagan conservative, which puzzles my fellow advocates, who think I should spontaneously combust from the sheer incongruity. On the other hand, I’ve taught them to speak Republican which has improved their rate of success with the state legislature. I am currently building an website designed to provide help and encouragement for people who work for and with small to mid-sized nonprofits and faith-based ministries seeking to address issues in their communities. My advocacy work includes children’s issues, expanding public transportation, creating barrier free housing and promoting community wide accessibility standards that allow transportation challenged Texans to fully participate in their communities. I have three grandchildren, a son and daughter-in-law, my beautiful daughter and her new husband and we used to live on beautiful Lake Palestine near Tyler, Texas, but God moved us to Washington State - apparently for our own good, though I'm not seeing it yet. My middle son, an amazing young man, passed away more than a year ago while finishing his senior year at UT Tyler. He was going to be a teacher. My book, "Going for the Green: An Insider's Guide to Making Money With Charity Golf" came out in September 2008 and has 4 1/2 stars on I've written a couple of thousand paid articles for Internet publishers, written several million dollars worth of grants and have ghost-written 20 plus eBooks for increasingly cranky clients at increasingly cranky prices. In this economy, I'm lucky to be working at all.

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