I've had this happen with both Maggie and with Mabel. Maggie did it to me the first time I took her to visit a house with other dogs. She stopped playing, ran up and just stared into my eyes as her whole body shook with glee. And she ran back to play. I was lucky enough to be holding a camera when Mabel did this to me in the summer of 09. This is a happy dog!
Mabel Lou was in demand socially! We would regularly have "Bone Parties" with the Rhodesians. It was quite comical. Every dog was given a frozen marrow bone... they would all curl up on a favorite chair or sofa. In Mabel's case, she would stand on the the front porch and whine at her Auntie until the "company rug" was placed just so for her. They would all chew a bit and then as if some voice only understood by dogs said, "SWITCH!!" they would all change bones. Mabel would get her pick but there was always some quibbling between the Rhodies as to who would get Mabel's bone. Mabel's bone was highly coveted!
I have always treated my dog to vanilla ice cream. Actually this habit was started by my mother when we used to take Maggie to Balboa park. She would always buy Mags a cup of vanilla. And if I go to an ice cream shop and my pup is with me, they get a scoop of vanilla. Mabel got her last scoop about 10 days before she passed.
At home, Mabel would always start in the kitchen with a cup but would pick it up and go to the den. Then she'd pick it up and take it outside.
Late summer, the national forest that feeds our favorite playground would catch on fire and burn for nearly month. For several breathtaking nights, members of the Creekerati would join us on our porch as we watch the mountainsides around us glowing. We would hike Alpine trail only once more after the fire.
The mountain across from Mabel used to be lush and green...
The first rain after the fire brought down so much soot and ash. It was a muddy mess to hike in...not that any of us minded. Rain would heal our forest and our creek...eventually. Not yet, but eventually!
And it was this next photo, taken by a friend as we were treating the dogs to cream at a coffee outing, that made me realize my girl was getting older. Where did all that gray come from?
Mabel got her favorite for Christmas...as always! And was happy about it...as always!
She loved hiking with friends...
All of my friends have always made fun of me for the shear number of dog beds I have for ONE dog! I'm not about to explain myself again in a memorial post but, Mabel adored when it was bed washing day! All the beds would end up in the living room as I recovered them for whatever season we were headed into. She would frequently try to fit on several at once.
If I have to think of all of hikes we've ever had and pick only one to say was my favorite, it took place on New Year's Day of 2010. The wash above the Rose Bowl is an amazing hike, especially on that holiday. There's the Rose Parade and the Rose Bowl game to provide a distant roar of a crowd. There were flyovers back then by the B2 Stealth Bombers. They would often organize their positions above us as we hiked... As a flight geek, I can only liken it to being backstage at a performance by your favorite singer. It was awesome!
Couple in the cool weather and water flowing... it was just the happiest day! And Mabel Lou was in fine comedic form! The stream was a bit too deep for the tiny dogs we were hiking with to cross on their own, so we would place a fallen tree at periodic spots to allow the small dogs to cross. Mabel would have none of this... as all trees and sticks were hers! ( I just remembered I've been saving pics for a Tree Saving 101 post for over a year!)
Every time we tried to place this tree trunk, Mabel would make off with it! I would go get it and place it where the little ones could cross and yet the tree would not affect the flow of the stream. And Mabel would steal it again. This went on so long... about 30 minutes of the 3 hour hike was spent dealing with the tree and the thief! I normally don't post photos of myself... so you'll have to understand how very happy I was "fighting" with my dog to be willing to show you this:
Just look at her go!
beginning here. Part Two is about Mabel's boyfriend...her only one ever! His name was Maxi and they dated for almost a year, before he moved away. She would still go by his house and look for him for years!
Part Three of this story was the best... Mabel decided to try her hand at being a teenaged girl! It was hilarious to watch and one of the most exciting days ever in our creek!
This year was SO exciting... I've barely touched on anything! Our friends from Minnesota came to visit... If Mabel had a human boyfriend, it was my pal Becky's hubby.
And Mabel's pal Ruby joined our pack. What a year!!!