My Dad made a very detailed list of things I was supposed to do upon his death. The most important one was to “Find a good home for Goldie.” Goldie, a gentle yellow lab he rescued at the age of eight, became his constant companion during the last years of his life. Their daily walks to the little store for a pack of smokes for him and a pepperoni stick for Goldie were legendary. Even after his hip replacement when the doctor advised him to stop walking her for fear she would pull him over, they kept right on with their afternoon strolls. When we found Dad in bed with a stroke, Goldie was laying right beside him patiently waiting for him to get better.
Upon his death, Goldie went to stay with my sister and her family and a while later, Bob and I stole her away to live with us. She took to Bob immediately and quickly became our constant companion too. During the day she would be at work with one of us and served as the well-loved office dog for everyone’s petting enjoyment. She loved riding around in cars and when you looked in the rear view mirror it was a like “Driving Miss Daisy” as she sat properly upright hoping the next stop would be a walk. The only thing she didn’t like was being left behind and would always rather go along, napping in the car during errands knowing you would be back shortly. Anyway, if you tried to drive away without her, she just followed the car so it wasn’t any use.
Goldie always made us feel as though Dad was still close by. She even had an uncanny way of giving my sister and me “The Look” that Dad was famous for when we were in trouble. Even the grandkids knew the look when they saw Goldie flash it and shaped up immediately.
Her happy place was in Netarts where she didn’t have to wear a leash, freely explored the alder cove and sat overlooking the bay at sunset, nose in the air to drink in the scent traveling in on the breeze. Long beach walks exploring every single object and her selective hearing when being called was this old dog’s favorite new trick.
When she passed away last week at the age of 14, she left a huge hole in our hearts and in our lives. In fact, everywhere we turn. Let it be said that I followed my father’s final instructions to the letter and found her a good home. A home she made by nestling deep in our hearts and souls.
So, "Thanks, Dad for your best friend, Goldie. We are grateful for the gift of time and love she shared with each of us. We are sending her back to you for a pepperoni and a scratch in her favorite spot, although, we really wanted you both to stay here with us forever."