My family history could easily be told from the point of view of all the dogs that have accompanied my kin and their ancestors going back a couple of centuries at least. I have often thought I might write such a book one day.
Early in my grandparents marriage, they adopted a Weimeraner they named Marie. Of course, I never knew this dog, but there was a photo of her standing by my grandparents mailbox at the end of their property. I wish I could find that photo. It was an old black and white thing, cracked and crinkled along the edges.
My grandmother adored this dog. She was sixteen when she got married, delivered my uncle soon after, and she and my grandfather fought their way through a great depression. Marie came along with my father as the depression of the 1930s was finally ending, and America entered the fray of World War II. This type of dog was commonly called “gray ghost” because of its sleek coat and the way it moved with such grace and silence.
My grandmother described this dog as a very one person dog. If she or my grandfather left their little farmhouse to venture away for any time, they would find her awaiting their return at the mailbox. She would even sometimes follow them to neighboring homes. I remember hearing about Marie when I was a teenager, having tea with my grandmother. When she would speak of the dogs she owned through the ages, I would always see this great fondness for each of them in her eyes, and then the sadness at the loss of them. I pray, in her heaven, she has quite the pack of all her old dogs who waited to greet her.