Dare boldly

A blog by Louise Gallagher


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Conversations with a Sheepadoodle named Beau.

For quite some time, I have been writing a series of conversations with Beaumont, the Sheepadoodle.

My daughters tell me they’re worried about me. “You know he doesn’t say those things, right mom?”, they ask. Not so delicately I might add.

“Of course he can” I reply.

And while deep inside I know he’s not actually ‘speaking’, I can hear his thoughts. He’s a very expressive dog you know.

In the course of writing down these conversations, I have been posting them on my Facebook wall. The comments are always reassuring — other people believe he can speak too! And they don’t think I’m crazy. (According to my daughters, maybe they do but they’re just not telling me.) But mostly, the conversations bring joy to others. And I love that they do!

Since Beaumont came into our lives just over 3 years ago, I have written over 30 of these conversations, mostly over the past year or so. They give me joy, especially as so many people connect with me over these conversations to tell me of the joy they bring them.

Several people have encouraged me to collect the stories into a book. They’re sure to be a hit, they say.

I’ve begun. It has been my summer project. The compiling of Conversations with a Sheepadoodle named Beau. I’m not sure how I’ll present the photos, whether I’ll sketch them or just leave them as is, but creating this project has been pure joy.

So whether Beau can speak or not, or whether I truly am channelling his voice or it’s just my inner cheeky child having her way or I’m just being silly, the joy of it all fills my heart.

And what could be better than that?

Me:  Beaumont. Come. We’ve got to go.

Beaumont:  It’s nice and cool here in the river. Why don’t you come in?

Me:  Don’t be ridiculous.

Beaumont:  Why is that ridiculous? It’s hot out there. Cool in here.

Me:  It’s time to go.

Beaumont:  Don’t you want to cool off? Kinda seems like you might need to.

Me:  I’m fine. Let’s go.

Beaumont:  You don’t seem fine to me. You seem kind of grumpy.

Me:  I’m not grumpy. I’m just hot and tired.

Beaumont:  I rest my case.

Me:  We’re leaving now.

Beaumont:  As you wish.

And so we left the river’s edge. Beaumont nice and cool and refreshed. Me, not so much.

 


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Beaumont the Wave Chaser

He is a wave hound. A chaser of the curve as it falls over onto itself racing towards the shore.

He follows the line of the water, running at full speed along the beach.

He does not bark. He does not zig nor zag. He runs like a bullet speeding through air, following the wave.

Beaumont loves the beach. He loves the ocean.

As always happens, no matter where we are or who we’re with, I am the first person up in the morning. It is my habit. My way of being.

I treasured those quiet mornings in Tofino. As the sun rose behind the trees lining the eastern horizon, the light advanced in long shimmering lines, reaching far into the western shores of the Island, pushing night’s blanket away from the shore. Beaumont and I would quietly leave our cabin at the edge of MacKenzie beach and walk in the early morning light, down the steps to the golden sand of Crystal Cove. I’d let him off his leash and he would race around me in circles, his mouth open in a great big huge grin, his body quivering in anticipation of the frolics to come, just on the other side of the rocks protruding from the sand. I’d throw his ball. He’d grab it and make a beeline for the first wave washing ashore.

And the fun began.

Ball in mouth, he races along the curve of the water, splashing and leaping in the waves. If there are others out in the early morning light, they inevitably stop and watch and smile.

Beaumont in the waves is a smile making machine.

He does not pay attention to humans, other dogs, birds. Nothing. He only has eyes for the waves, the water cascading over itself as it rushes to shore.

One woman couldn’t resist his antics. She waited patiently to grab just the perfect photo. She walked towards me, camera outstretched to show me. “I’m so excited I caught him leaping in the waters. His smile is contagious.” She showed me her photo and added. “I want a dog just like him!”

Every morning I walked the beach with Beaumont and was reminded of how easy it is to be in the moment, to be present to joy and share smiles with strangers.

Lesson from a Dog: Chase waves. Smile lots. Life is an adventure.