Bonnie and her ornery brother Clyde came rumbling into my life like a couple of the worst kind of outlaws – the kind that steel your heart. In 1997, I was living in west Pueblo when Bonnie and her brother found me. They had been living off the land until they moved in and took over. The love affair blossomed from there.
Bonnie loved to go fishing and camping. She was in her element running around in the wood, smelling the forest, and chasing the wind. She had thick fur and took every opportunity to cool off in the water or lay in a cool shady spot. The snow was her cool friend. Her brother Clyde was just the opposite. He was short haired and wanted nothing to do with water and cold.
I used to take Bonnie and Clyde ice fishing. Clyde would stay in the ice hut with me where it was warm but Bonnie wanted to stay outside even if it was snowing. Sometimes she would become totally covered with snow lying outside the ice hut. I would look outside for her and would only see a large white pile of snow that was Bonnie.
Bonnie was driven by love where her brother was driven by food. When I came home from work, Bonnie would greet me with a bone or chewy in her mouth as if to say “I’m so happy you are home, I brought you a treat” and I swear that she would smile at me. Her brother Clyde would run up and greet me too but he would say,” I’m glad you’re home. Got any food?” She started her night by sleeping on my bed along with Clyde but would later leave the bed because it was too hot.
While Clyde has wide open eyes that seem to stare right through you, Bonnie had soft eyes that squinted softly when she looked at me as if to say, “I love you.” She would even wink at me. Her tail wagged all the time, slowly waving at me when I looked her way or spoke to her. She was an extremely expressive friend.
Bonnie and Clyde would keep the yard free of squirrels and rabbits. They patrolled the yard, keeping a vigilant eye for trespassing critters, running through a flock of pigeons or just chasing each other playing until they were exhausted.
In 2009 I had extensive neck surgery. When I came home from the hospital, Bonnie helped nurse me back to health while at the same time, she was fighting her own illness. She had developed cancer in her lungs. She watched over me and was attentive to my needs as well watching out for my Ma and Pa as well as her brother, Clyde. When we were all better Bonnie knew that her job was done here. She was ready to take one more journey. On New Year’s Day, 2010, we said our goodbyes and she crossed over the bridge where she awaits our arrival.
She will always be in my heart, loved and missed.