Martha Jane was a Wonderful Blue Dog
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Martha "Calamity" Jane
December 9, 1991 - August 28, 2002

Part III - September 21, 2002

"...service in blue..."

It has been more than three weeks since MJ went on her way. Although the time has softened our loss somewhat, the memories of our sweet girl dog grow stronger.

As I put these pages together as a tribute to Our Blue Dog, I begin to realize how much she affected our lives these past ten years. She has shared all the good and bad times with us, helped us through difficult decisions and transitions - her "service in blue" to us giving us comfort, hope, joy. She was always there when we needed a grin, a look, a nuzzle, or a hug. She was totally devoted to us, and we often speculated that she would put herself between us and any physical danger, that she would "take a bullet" for us, if necessary. She was willing to do just that, and these weeks of contemplation on her marvelous time here, convinced me that she did take a lot of the pain away from us in all kinds of ways.

Martha Jane was joyful dog. And her joy to see us spilled all over us every day. She loved to travel, and of course, she had the whole back seat of our extended cab GMC to herself. She was particular about her space, but she loved being enclosed in a safe place. A safe place was anywhere we were, and she always was ready to go in her room next to my office in the barn, when it was time to settle down for sleep. When I arrived at work the next morning she was always peeking out of the door to greet another joyful day, in her job as my office manager, or "head of ranch security".

Martha Jane has a new job. She is a Moonraker and Sunset Maker. The sunsets have been unusually spectacular this month. "Thank you, Martha", we say to each other, when the streaks of yellow, orange, and purple paint not only the western sky, but all around, reflecting off the clouds to the north and east. Last evening, we were out in front of the house, admiring a new fence we have been working on. I happened to glance down the street to the east, and saw the biggest orange ball sitting on the end of the street, behind some trees. Of course, it was the near-full moon, rising huge and quickly over our little town, and as we looked out to the west, there was another of MJ's sunset beauties, flashing and multicolored like her beautiful coat. That dog is still a calamity, and she will fill our lives now, as she always did, taking away our sadness, as she once took away our pain.

And she is still the sweetest dog ever born.

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