Friday, December 23, 2011

Critters at Christmas


By CHRIS MILLSPAUGH

If you're like me and a lot of others, many things didn't go your way this year. There were a lot of events and decisions out of your control that had to be included in the loss column. Now, right before you begin to feel melancholy about 2011, I would hope you would reflect back upon the wonderful relationships you had with the critters of the Wood River Valley.

As I stand outside the Sawtooth National Recreation Headquarters building looking up at the flag and murmuring words like serenity, courage and wisdom while musing about my last week on the job, my thoughts turned to those animal pals who have meant so much to me over the course of this past year.

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Human beings have a way of letting you down in life, but it is not so with the critters. I embrace the fact that I had a lot of close relationships with cats and dogs this year that belonged to other folks. I'd like to take this opportunity to wish holiday greetings to all those fine animals who allowed me into their lives in 2011. To Pete, Marco and Jerry of Hailey, for whom I used to be the "Cat Nanny," I wish all the best for the coming year. To Nico, the large, orange kindly night marauder who always had a "head butt" for me and who lets me know he's still around by jumping on my 1984 Cadillac Coupe Deville at night to leave his paw prints, I wish you a lot of albacore and "robinettes" in the coming year. You gotta' love the felines.

As for my canine buds, warm holiday greetings to Jack and Nathan, who included me into their lives and treated me with great affection. A Merry Christmas to Milo, the super athlete, who allowed me to play ball with him whenever we got together. Also, to Liam Malone (Leave Him Alone), a talented acquaintance who has been known to quaff an entire beer during happy hour at the Casino. And finally, to the female black lab who hangs around the Mountain View Grocery and accepts an occasional milk bone from me—all the best.

And all the best to you folks who will cherish your critters this season—Merry Christmas and nice talking to you.




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