A while back I donated to help a nice dog get necessary surgery. He lives with a friend of a friend and the surgery was, as usual, fantastically expensive and the lady needed help. I understand that position very well, so I gave and in return I’m getting a wonderful gift.

Another friend of this lady is making vector portraits for some donors. I got a first proof of Mina’s vector portrait yesterday, made from a photo of Mina as a fluffy puppy.

vector portrait of Mina

Mina Loves Bones

The finished portrait will be 8.5″ x 11″ and I’ll frame it and hang it at home over my desk.

I love the pictures of Mina when she was young and ridiculously energetic. When we lived for a time in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, we were a couple of blocks over from a country club golf course. There was a cart path around a stream that ran through the course near the neighborhood and we’d walk it late in the evening or early in the morning when no golfers were about.

One morning we were walking along and Mina was off leash and we got to a part of the stream where the bank was low on our side, but high on the side with the houses. Mina was trotting ahead of me when suddenly, without any warning, she leaped into the stream! The water was up to her belly and she tried to climb out on the other side but it was too steep. I was calling her and yelling for her to get out of the damn water and when she made it to the low side I had to help pull her out.

She was covered in the thickest, blackest, smelliest mud I’ve ever seen. When she started to turn her head to shake, I ran up the trail from her! Then I put her leash back on, scolded her, and took her home for the longest bath … ever. It probably took an hour to get all that black, sticky mud off her belly and legs and then shampoo her so she didn’t smell like stagnant branch water.

Mina was never a big fan of water before that incident (indiscretion?), except for standing in shallow water in a stream in Denver, and she stayed out of it the rest of her life. Mina didn’t even like the deeper puddles after a rain, she hated getting a bath (although she cooperated), and she disliked wet grass.

Mina at the dogpark in Denver, 1999

Sometimes when it rains, I crouch at the front window that still bears her nose marks and imagine she’s sitting beside me, pouting because we can’t go outside. I miss my baby girl every minute of every day.