I get emotional twice a year, after Thanksgiving listening to sad holiday songs on the radio driving home with my husband sleeping in the passenger seat in our old car. And July 4th with military and other music that makes us remember who we are, Americans.

Why did I not walk out to see the fireworks last night? Bugs in standing water the County will not drain. They’ve always loved to munch on me, since I was a kid. I also stayed to protect dog Zoe but she didn’t need protection as she just stayed away from the windows.

We used to live next door to the largest land-based fireworks in the US. Guess who was Zoe’s best friend? Pyro Paula. Company owner who ran the whole thing. We’d walk by a month earlier and a voice would call out ZOE! They’ve been buds for years so I don’t think she’s afraid of a little “thunder.”

And I don’t mind missing the fireworks as I’ve seen the best in the world, and then went to see the smallest on a tiny lake in the middle of no-where by the local fire department. Sitting on the grass for ten minutes was just as fun, but I got better photos of the big ones. One day my husband will tell me where he placed those old photos. New battery, more memory. Still my laptop is ancient.

I’ve been present at three pet euthansias. The first was my cat Nathan, then my dog Chani and then the dog of a friend. I do not look forward to the death of my old dog Zoe. My husband may not wish to be there but as he as been there through her entire life he must help her in the end.

Renewal. Do everything you can to protect someone you love. Care for them. Feed them. My sister gave a box of chicken broth to my mother, home from the hospital. She said “Dee always makes it from scratch.” I did, and used to go across the street to a mini-mart and buy her a NYTimes and a V-8. She needed nutrients.

Our dog Zoe passed her ten-year elderly blood panel with flying colors and another vet said she doesn’t need another until age 12. I think she’ll be with us for a while. There will be sadness when she goes but I think I’ve one more shelter pup in me to train and feed well and be a great companion. Thanks for reading! Happy Independence Day. “Aunt” Dee


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