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the very best boy

Amicus Black died on October 29th, 2021, just after noon.  He was 15 going on 16. 

My best friend and stalwart partner in crime.

We haven’t kept up this blog at all, really.  Too busy having adventures together.

The hundreds and hundreds of hikes.

The trips to Vancouver when my mom was still alive, the walks around the seawall and at Ambleside Dog Park.

The trips to Comox for my dad’s eye appointments.  Frolicking on the beach waiting for the ferry.

The trips to Ladner and Sechelt to see Steve, Rhonda, Sofie, and Le-le and Kecia and Simone.

The trip to Alberta with Dad and Steve to visit Kevin before he died.

The trip to Vancouver for Mom’s death and then a month later her funeral.

The trip to Alberta with Steve and Tara to scatter Dad’s ashes. Now, I have Ami’s ashes on my shelf beside a golden glittering candle.

All the playing ball and Chuck-It on the huge field behind the old school.

Chilling out on the couch watching Netflix, grinning at each other with such unconditional love. 

How he’d play with his good dog friends, Farther, Leo, and Sole; all three of them now gone, too.  And the fun with his best friend, Franklin, who thankfully is still running strong though getting on himself.

Ami went through it all with me and me with him:  when my mom died; Ami’s surgeries, his two run-ins with Canada Post, my broken ankle, when my dad died, all the poetry and slams, all the turmoil and mess of life, swimming and plunging into rivers, lakes and the Pacific Ocean.

Climbing small mountains.  So many hikes.

The yummy food and treats.  How he loved slurping freshly flushed clean toilet water. 

It was the best life.

Certainly, the best years of my life so far.

Amicus was freaky smart, had me wrapped around his big dog claw.

I swear he smiled and laughed as much as I did.

He slept up on my bed
until he couldn’t.

Then he slept on the couch
until he couldn’t.

Then he slept on a big comfy dog bed on the floor.

All the times I lay beside him, his breathing presence such a constant comfort; brushing him, cleaning his ears (he LOVED that), putting warm towels from the dryer on his aching arthritic back legs. 

We just always were.

We were.


He knew me inside out and I knew him the same.

I felt somehow defined by Amicus.

I think he felt the same way.

We completed each other.

Pinky Stinky, I love(d) you with all my heart.

I will honour and miss your company forever.

I hope we will meet again in another life, my dear friend.

And, Amicus Black,

you were the very best boy.


A Dingo Ate My Tennis Ball

Remember back when I said I think Amicus has a thing for Ozzies, well, he recently befriended the most Australian of all Australian dogs, a Dingo.  Yes, a real-life full-blooded Dingo named Honey, and yes, the Dingo ate my tennis ball.  I’ve never seen a brand new tennis ball disappear into shreds more quickly in my life.  She has teeth like scalpels.  When she growls, it’s a different sound than a regular old dog; it’s wild and mad like the entire Outback just opened its jaws and said stand back!  Amicus definitely watched his P’s and Q’s around her, that’s for sure.

When we were leaving the park, Honey jumped right into my car along with Amicus and I said to her owner, “Thanks for the Dingo,” but of course, Honey’s owner wasn’t having any of that.  It’s cool, though, because how many people do you know who can say, “I had a Dingo in my car.”

Other new friends I must mention are Jet, an eight-year-old border collie/lab (I think a lot of borders must be missing their collies), Charlie, a cocker spaniel who likes to bark and jump up on people, which his owner is trying to curtail – curtail, what a perfect word to use in connection with dogs, eh – and Hector who is a little dog with a mighty spirit, but I can’t remember what kind he is.

Amicus has no fear of dogs, he absolutely loves meeting new dogs.  If they show any aggression, he just avoids them.  Unfortunately, he is still wary of people, especially men and especially when people reach for his head.   I hate to think what his previous owner{s} did to put this fear in him.

It makes me sad to think of someone putting that kind of horrible negativity into any dog, but right now especially Amicus because he has such a sweet loving spirit and wants so to please.  I bet when he was a puppy, he trusted everyone; that someone took that beautiful innocence away from him totally reinforces my commitment, no matter how long it takes, I will help Amicus trust again, help him to trust like a puppy trusts.  Amicus needs to access his inner puppy.  “Here, puppy, good puppy!”

What a journey we’re on!

Arf World

Amicus is four years old; in dog years that’s about 37, so if he were a human, he’d be twice divorced, probably on the wagon, and worried about his Visa bill, but luckily for him, he’s not human.  Amicus is a collie/shepherd cross who just a week ago was adopted from the Cowichan SPCA shelter and driven to Powell River by his new owner, ALB, in her small blue Toyota Echo.  This blog will start with his time in Abbotsford when he was a stray and will be largely speculative leading up to his journey to Duncan to the Cowichan shelter and his eventual adoption by ALB, whereupon his current actual adventures will commence.  This is just an intro, but because ALB has to take a bunch of garbage to the Powell River (PR) dump, it must be cut short until later.  Thanks for tuning in, or whatever you call it in blogging patois.  Until later, ALB and Amicus wish you well.

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