Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Bubbi, I love you

My Grandmother, Edith was a very special person. 4'11", red-haired and with a strong sense of self, she ruled her home with love, kindness and a very sharp understanding of what was 'right'. Born to an urban doctor who helped insurgents in her country's civil war, she learned early in life to stand up when necessary, be counted, do right. She adapted to a culture that was not hers and mastered a lifestyle that she could not have dreamed of in her tumultuous, war-filled childhood. She was elegant, well-mannered and civil. She was also strong-willed, decisive and imbued with a need to guide her daughters to become the kind of young ladies that she thought appropriate for their station in life. My mother fought her all the way, from birth to death; my aunt was her pet and garnered the benefits of the position.

In turn, her girls grew up and went off to school. Bubbi kept herself busy but the house didn't feel 'right' during the day, with no one there but her and the housekeeper. Despite her charity work and running a very busy household, she was lonely. Mein Zeyde, my beloved Zeyde had his Buster, his little brown dog who went everywhere he went and no one understood her emptiness better than her loving husband.

One day, in his overcoat pocket, he brought home a little brown, white and black ball of fluff. He offered Edith the chance to reach into his pocket to 'see what he had found on the street'. The truth was that he had contacted every breeder that he knew to find a suitable dog for his lady. In that odd way, Trixie came to be a member of the clan. Who knew that a little Pekinese with the personality of an empress could fill such a void!?! Trixie was her pride and joy, a replacement child and an irreplaceable friend and companion. She was long gone by the time I was born but she was still a fixture in our lives. When I was five, my mother took me to a toy store to buy my birthday present (we chose our own gifts, usually - yes, I have that kind of family). She was shocked when I trundled over to a stuffed Pekinese doll and proclaimed her to be 'the new Trixie'!.

This photo is but one of the many that dotted the table tops in their home, my Grandmother looking on Trixie as she would a baby. Even if I don't have Edith's loving hands and sensible words, somehow I was lucky enough to have inherited this photo... and the knowledge that a good dog, well-loved, is worth much more than any riches you can win. I aspire to be the kind of person my dogs believe me to be. I also aspire to be like Edith - Grus Gott

I miss you, Bubbi und Zeyde. Shluf mein feygele - a malakeh a tu git.

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