There are many reason why I believe I should have another borzoi but perhaps none more compelling than when I see friends I have not seen in several months, or perhaps do not read the Blyss Blog, and they ask how my dogs are. When I tell them the Blyss Borzoi are all gone now, they express so much shock and sorrow and then ask me if I am getting another borzoi. Of course I am, I tell them, and my goal is to have one by the end of this year. It is then that I introduce “Jelly”, of the Bibikov Kennel in Cross River, NY, a four year old finished champion. Then, I see their faces light up with happiness for me, and I smile back and even laugh a bit. That is how I know I have made the right decision.
There is much death, death impending, death far away. But death is ubiquitous because one never knows when it will touch down. But until it does, there are many ways to avoid it, although one of the best methods may be running in circles.
Within two years, I lost all of the original Blyss Borzoi and my husband, too. Although I struggle hard to accept these events I cannot do so without performing behaviors that I have been informed by physicians are harmful to myself. It’s because my heart aches for these losses, and for all of the things for which they compensated. But in our own ways, “we all walk the long road.” Something got away and we keep chasing it.
In Hounds of the Steppes I write:
Eternal Hound, please, to be wherever you are!
My heart belongs to one lost long ago
Lost to the Hounds’ most open space
With blinding sun by day and dazzling stars by night…
‘Tis light, after all, a sight-hound’s true friend,
‘Twas light drove us apart…. and left me behind.
I could but stand by and watch her fly to the chase
And pray, a vision eternity cannot erase,
Having lost so much and so far the way.
That is just one of the ways I look at all this death around me and try to understand it. But that was then and this is now. Now is the time to bring new things together and be future oriented.
The death of my last borzoi, Paris in July 2014 has brought me full circle back to 2002 when I no longer had a dog. Looking back, I see I passed through a journey as my level of interest in matters of the world diminished as that of my interest in dogs, especially borzoi, grew. Like all journeys, there were good days and bad, some laughs and some tragedies. It seemed anything and everything that could happen to one person did, as if I were a character in a Greek tragedy. Only the protagonist lived to tell the tale so perhaps my life story would qualify as a comedy. I do not see it that way, but I will leave that differentiaton to literary critics to judge.
One day, my husband Bob and I had the opportunity to purchase a young male borzoi that, we were told, was a show dog and needed to complete his Champion Dog title. We knew this was a stretch for us, because neither of us had ever shown a dog in conformation. However, it was something I thought I always wanted to do so we said yes. The breeder said it would be “fun and easy”! We purchased “Casanova” and brought him home to live with us. By the end of the week, we realized we needed a new house.
Blyss Kennels began that moment, but especially in September of the year 2003 when we bought our home that would serve as our kennel, too, Blyss House on the first ridge of the Watchung Mountain. That was when we acquired more borzoi: Mikhailya, Paris and Opal, soon followed, and everything began in earnest.
And so it ended, too, abruptly in 2011 really when Bob died suddenly. I had to downsize and although I stayed in the same town, the new Blyss House and its grounds were half the size of what it was. However, my borzoi were old dogs by then, and over the course of the next eighteen months, one by one they passed on. This then is the Fini, to the telling of their story.
My Blogs will not appear after this point in order that I can put them in a book format. I hope to have this prepared by January 2015, an event that will be well publicized. Please consult the Blysskennels.us website for updates. At that time, I plan to begin anew, Blyss Blog Encore. It will be interesting to see how I am doing and whether or not there is a borzoi at home. Shall I or shall I not continue on my course with my beloved breed of dog? There is much work that needs to be done, and many decisions I need to make. I have no doubt, the next permutation of my Blyss Blog will be as compelling as the current one so many people have come to read, and to return and return. I promise, no one will be disappointment. It can be said with certainty, I have found my voice. Thank you for taking the time to listen.