Monday, March 09, 2009

The Kindness of Strangers

"Strangers" has never seemed like such a foreign concept as it has these past few weeks. The way that my mailbox, emailbox, and front door are overflowing is really overwhelming with wishes from hundreds of people that I "technically" do not know and who "technically" do not know me. One of these days I promise to thank each and every one of you personally, when I have my wits about me again.

I am overdue in posting photos of the wonderful things I have received, mostly because crying and Photoshop don't mix. My few attempts have been pretty darned pathetic. Rest assured that everything that has been sent is sitting on my kitchen table (where I spend the majority of my time when I am in the house) so I can see it all the time - flowers, Bogart's painting, the needle-felted mini-Bogart, the book of well-wishes from all over the world that arrived from Australia, a tiki necklace from New Zealand, and more. And cards - so many cards.

Last night I got a surprise in the form of a visit from Charlie's moms - it seems that people are concerned about my not eating. LOTS of people. In fact it's probably the most-mentioned thing in the comments and emails these days. I am good at a lot of things - just not cooking, apparently. I got to meet Charlie - what a fine, handsome looker he is! - and Charlie's moms got to meet Bogart. And they brought me a cooler full of amazing vegetarian food. I was a little bit in shock - ok, I was in the bathtub just before they arrived - but still kind of wandered around the front yard in a bit of a daze. Ladies, the food is AMAZING, and yes I put it into the refrigerator right away. Yes I had some last night, as well as this morning. I will post photo proof of me eating as promised!

I know that so many times when I talk to people about Bogart's blog in the past, I have gotten an odd reaction, a sort of "you do what?" or "people actually write AS their dogs?" kind of thing. Sometimes I've found it was easier to just go along with it, downplaying the blog's importance in my life, or just saying something like "yeah it keeps me off the streets and out of the bars". I don't think I can ever again do the downplay. After all that has happened, and all of the support I've received, it would be a great disservice to ever have to pretend again that this isn't one of the most important things in my life - in addition to Bogart, my cats, and of course, Klaus. A big shout-out to DWB, for without it we all would not be connected in this special way.


Lulu & Bogart


Khyra The Siberian Husky said...

That is sooooooo grrrrreat!

Yes, fur the most parts, we are strangers (and some of us have some really strange moms) BUT we khan feel when a person deserves and warrants our love!

I will admit, I'm always very entertained as I read how well we are able to pretend to be hooooomans!

Take your time -
Take the time -

And if all else fails, just paw it furward!


The OP Pack said...

Khyra said it soooooo well, we will echo her thoughts. Writing is also good for the soul - so keep it coming.

We are all thinking of you and Bogart.

Woos, the OP Pack

Baby Rocket Dog and Hootie said...

Dear Lulu, There is so much of you & Klaus in Bogart's blog that we all love you as much as we love Bogart! You are really pretty much an honorary pooch. Smooches, BabyRD & Hootie

Jan's Funny Farm said...

Khyra does have a way with words. She's right. There are a lot of nice bloggers out there. We're glad you're getting so much attention from them at a time you really need support. And good food. Keep eating. You need to keep up your strength for Bogart and your cats, as well as yourself.

Jan doesn't ever apologize for her blogs. If folks don't approve or understand, tough. Undoubtedly, they're doing something she wouldn't approve or understand. :)

Name: Mr. Hendrix said...

We are very glad you're getting the support you need right now. You are in our purrs and prayers always.

Mommy never apologizes for "my blogging" because she has seen the wonderful things bloggers do for each other.

We are glad you are eating what you can. You need to keep up your strength. purrrrrrs

Ruby Bleu said...

Hi Lulu...
What a beautiful post. I too downplay the blog thing sometimes...but seeing how much love and strength it has brought you at this time in your life shows me that I don't need to...not now, not ever.

So glad you are eating! hang in there...

Love, Michele & Ruby

Sal and Ruf said...

Once again take care of yourself and Bogart. You don't have to read everything at once. It must be over-whelming to see all of us...
We are a great big community of stage fright comedians, I think.
Someone once walked up to me and my first two dales, she said there are two types of people that can't own airedales, bankers and prison guards. And off she walked. I was sooo confused by that one. But I figured that those occupations must like order and discipline...
Then there was the fact that Rob and I were the later occupation. We admit we are totally crazy and love to laugh at these creatures.
Sally and Rufus' DogMother

Deetz said...

I was going to send you some of my snackies, but my mum said you would probably not eat them. I am so glad that you are eating. I hope that Bogart is eating too and the kitties. Everyone laughs at my mum when she tells them that her dog blogs (that would be me, Deetzy)...and she says laughter is the best medicine....they shut up.
We love you, and think about you daily.

Randi said...

Hi Lulu & probably a good thing that only a small percentage of DWB-ers live in your area, otherwise you'd need to purchase a few new freezers & fridges...& maybe a Weight Watchers membership...cuz the force feeding would be crazy!

I'm glad you both had a chance to connect with Charlie & his mom...

The rest of us will continue with the techo-connecting...

With much love & (licks from Randi)
Randi & her mom

Noah the Airedale said...

Hell yeah, DWB is the best. I get odd looks too. Must admit though, I just bat on telling people how great it is. Their loss not to be part of it.
I'm so glad you have this support Lulu and even though most of us are far away, we're definitely close at heart.

Denise & the Leuradales xx

Lucia said...

Ciao bella Lulu!

We don't know who we'd like to hug more: the wonderful food-delivering mamas di Charlie or you and Bogie. I guess we'll just have to call it a tie. An abundance of mwahs to both!!

Hang tight, bella Lulu e caro Bogie, and just remember to look over your shoulder if any given day seems particularly hard. We'll all be standing right there behind you...

Tanti baci!

Sweepy said...

Dear Lulu,
If only you are within barking distance from our house Heaven, I will ask Keeper to feed you her sinful delights.

But just in case (woof! just in case) you're full of Charlie's moms vege pack, just whistle and I'll gladly hop over and help you with it. I am so into vegggies... like my Keeper.

Just in case though.
Meanwhile, do you want me to order gourmet pizza for you and bacon fritatas for Bogart?

Marvin -The Hollow Hound said...

Hey Lulu, you said it all in this lovely post.

Glad to read you are eating - so we won't nag at you this time!

DWB is the best isn't it?

There is indeed a great connection between us all.

Funny enough I can write better and more truthfully, as my Dog than I can as myself - not sure what this says about me, but who cares!

We went away from the blogs for quite a time, but on our recent return we were welcomed back with open arms, it is a wonderful community indeed.

Take care (this phrase always sounds so trite) but I hope you know it is meant very sincerely.

Take your time, is the best advice ever, go at your own pace.......

lotsaluv from Jeannie in Scotland - oh and Marvin xxxxxxxx

hugs to Bogart and you.

Molly and Taffy said...

Hello Lulu

How lovely that Charlie brought his Mum to see you AND with lots of scrummy food.

We think you have been an extraordinary brave lady and you have shared so much with us all.

We are strangers but what a group of stranges we are, all sharing such a wonderful comaraderie within the DWB community.

Take care of yourself. Hugs to Bogart.

Abby said...

Hi, Lulu...

I know what you mean...I have gotten the strange looks & the "You do what's"...I've heard them all...

I just know that this is a big part of my life, also...We laugh together & cry together...There is no judging or ridicule...And, somehow, we feel love & friendship for eachother...

I hope our thoughts & prayers are comforting you as you make your way thru this...

Much Love,
Pat, Abby's Mom xxxooo

Chef said...

Who couldn't love someone else's dog and other people who love dogs? That's the first part of the connection between all the DWBers, I think. The rest just flows from there, from love. My Mama gets funny looks too sometimes but those are usually from the people who don't have/love a dog. The rest really do get it.

Glad you're eating and taking care of yourself! xoxo to Bogart and the cats.


Asta said...

Lulu and Bogie
Asta's "voice" has seemed inappropriate at times recently when I try to write to you..she is so silly, and I didn't want you to think I ever trivialized your pain or loss, but sometimes, it's the only way I can write.
The few Bloggers I've met in person have been exactly as I pictured them, and never disappointing..if anything, we already had such a connection that it was as if we'd been friends for years.
I think all of us wanted to run over and feed you after your last post, I'm so glad Charlie and his Mom were able to do it..Thank you for trying to take care of yourself..I know it's not uppermost in your mind right now.
None of us can fill the void Klaus has left, but I hope we can supply a few smiles and a feeling that you are not alone.
We are all very lucky to have found each other in this wonderful community..take our ove and caring and use it in any way you can
hug and kiss Bogie and the kitties for us and know we hold you near our hearts
Ami and smoochie kisses from ASTA

Dughallmor Beagles said...

Here here....on the downplaying thing....and all the wonderful comments, couldn't have put it better myself, so I won't try!
Love, hugs and slobbers xx
PS. good girl eating!

Dawn said...

Good job Charlie (and his Mom!) for doing what all of us wanted to do but couldn't. I'm glad you have the support of the doggie blog. Take it one moment at a time. That's the only way to get through this. At your own speed.

Clover said...

Hi Lulu,
This is a very sweet post; you said it very well. I am so glad you are feeling the support from DWB. Even though most of us don't know each other, I feel like we are a big family. Sending puggy hugs and kisses (and human hugs too) to you and Bogart.
Love Clover & Mom, Jess xo

Sue said...

So glad to hear that you are eating a bit. I know it can't be easy. Hang in there, stay strong, and hug Bogart.

Warm wishes from San Diego

Maggie and Mitch said...

Bless Charlie's mom for bringing you dinner and then some!
We've been reading Bogie's blog for over 2 1/2 years and we really feel as though we know you! DWBer's are the best! We find everyone to be so kind and supportive!

Love ya lots,
Maggie and Mitch

Anonymous said...

People who love dogs are never strangers. I'm so glad you are getting the support you need.

MISS PEACH ~(^.^)~ said...

Leaving a basket of soft fuzzt kitty hugs for you dear Lulu and Bogart and yout kitties. You are always in my thoughts. I wish I could cook but as a cat I only eat stinky goodness and that is not a fitting diet for you right now....allmy Love fromMiss Peach

Sunny,Scooter,Jamie said...

AMEN to your words. Not many "outsiders" understand. We hold you in our hearts now and always. You'll get a chance to pAW it forword. We love you.
Jamie and the kids

Joe Stains said...

Thank dog you got some food, HOORAY to the kindness of Charlie's human. I am glad to hear we are keeping your spirits up and we sure do wish everyone could be part of something as great as DWB. The world sure would be so much better if everyone was as kind as the DWB folks.

Kirby said...

Lulu, In reading your blog and the comments left on it over the last few weeks, I've been truly inspired by the kindness of others. We all love to blog on behalf of our dogs, but I don't think anyone could have asked for a better group of humans, doggies, kitties, hammies and any other animal. Maybe it's the love of the animals that makes us all so great. I sure know that I feel better having hundreads of friends that I've never met, and each and every one has got my back. I'm so happy that during these difficult days, you have hundreads of friends simply being there for you. KUDOS to Charlie's Mom for bringing you vegetarian foodables, I hope you enjoy them and share a bit with Bogie. Hugs to you all!!!

With love,
Kirby & his mom Kirstin

mister jeter harris, hizself said...

deer lulu an bogart.
i hav been away fer a wile ... an wanned to check in on klaus.
i'm verree sorree.
i am thinkin uv u both.
luv--yer frend--jh

Lorenza said...

I have no words after reading all the comments.
We are a family and we are here for you!
Take care
Kisses and hugs

Sally said...

Dear Lulu and Bogart,

We are so glad that you have been supported by the blogs and their Bloggers (Human, and animal) - perhaps it is because we love our animals so much that we become better ourselves - but I feel the DWB community is a very special one and in many ways very tight knit - despite the geographical distance. When we say that we are here for you - we REALLY are.

So through the internet I send you very real and very solid hugs - and some very big licks from Sally .
Diana , Chris and Sally

Jackson said...

Dear Lulu, I think many of us have experienced the pawsome-ness of DWB in times of difficulty. To know that there is a whole community out there supporting you is a huge comfort. We're all here for you, even if only in spirit. Jackie & Jackson xx

Martha Basset said...

Hi Lulu
We had to smile when we read your post! We seem to be sharing so many smiles and so many tears it is hard to think of you as a stranger.
We are quite new to dog blogging and our mum has friends who think she is mad!
It is hard to explain to people who a) do not have dogs and b) to people who dont blog.
There is such a warmth to the DWB community that we are really glad to now be part of it.
We actually no longer care what other people think cos we know we enjoy it.
We are really pleased that you are now eating - you do need to look after yourself.
We know you will look after Bogart and your little kitty cats.
Take care, we are all here for you anytime you feel up to it.
love from Martha, Bailey and Family, xxxx

Suzuki said...

Hi Lulu & Bogart
We have never met and until recently we never knew that the other existed. But now we think about you ev-furry day and hope that each day becomes a little easier fur you.
Big licks to you

The Airechicks said...

Lulu - Bogart - Kitties:

Over the past week - watching & reading all the DWB's - truly AMAZING & WONDERFUL group of people. And so are all the other folks who follow because they want to.

Everyone wishes they were closer to give the shoulders & hugs you need so much - what this group of folks give is SOOOOO much more - they are like Lorenza says - "YOUR FAMILY"

Thank you for sharing your joys, your heartbreak, your life, the daily grind.

God Bless Charlie & his Mom for being able to bring you some food. Thank you Charlie & Mom for giving Lulu & Bogart a great big hug for all of us.

What a wonderful post!!

Thank you!!

Stanley said...

Sweet Lulu!

Charlie's moms are going to get some of the juiciest goober smooches I can muster for doing something so great for you! That's some practical lovin' for sure.

My girl confessed to me that she has sometimes downplayed the blog thing and why we do it, but since everything with Klaus started, now her friends are asking for updates and wondering how you all are. They have never even read Bogie's blog and yet they cried for you and are thinking of you. I suspect some of them are even following you and Bogie's blog now that they know you're not just some "virtual" friend.

My girl has vowed as you have that the downplay will not ever again cross her lips. We're proud to be part of something like DWB, where we can share our lives and love. Brooke & Greg probably had NO IDEA what they were going to get when they started out, or how much it was going to affect people all over the world.

I think we're better than the United Nations.

Goober love & smooches,

Pee S
Give my bud, Bogart, a nice cuddle and scritch from all of us please.

Anonymous said...

I'm reading your posts and crying so much and I don't even know you. I'm also laughing at the $666.00!
I'm sitting here with Geoffrey right now (our 1 year old airedale) and he came over to give me a "hug" (or ask for a hug!) out of the blue! We've had quite a year with him destroying pretty much everything, but we're holding out! This actually the first time he's ever settled down enough to spend quality time with me. he's usually running, jumping, pouncing and getting into everything! Over the last year, anytime I'd look up info to help us out with what we should do about Geoffrey, I'd come across Handsome Bogart Devil somewhere along the way! I think the very first thing we all watched as a family are videos on youtube.
I'm so sorry about your loss. It's obvious that your husband was the most unique, wonderful and special of men. Please accept our condolences. I know you've a lot to read, and I sure hope this all doesn't make you feel worse about everything (all the messages, from all over the world), but honestly, I do believe your presence (your husband's, yourself and handsome bogart devil) make this world a better place! Thank you so much for sharing your lives with all of us.
I seriously can't believe Geoffrey is sitting beside me and actually relaxing, lazing out. This is awesome.
Hi to Handsome Bogart Devil from Geoffrey!!
xx's and a big hug,
Phyllis and family

Anonymous said...

BOGART HANDSOME DEVIL!!! (sorry about that!!) I must have thought he was really handsome... :P

Moco said...

Lulu and Bogart:
When I first was introduced to DWB's it was through my daughter (Peanut's mom). I thought she had lost her mind. I just started out reading and commenting. I was introduced to the most wonderful community on earth. I became absorbed in the lives of these pups, kitties, hammies and hoomans that I had never met. You could always go to the blog for a good laugh, good cry or just good feeling. Somehow I got started blogging for Moco. We are not on top of things as we should be, but we do attempt. This is a special group of people who all love their animals. More of the world could take a lesson or two from some of the blogs. We will always be here for you. We are only a few miles down the road. Please feel free to contact us any time.
Moco and Grammie AKA Marilyn

pughy said...

Tears are good, they are better out then in. Everyone understands that you need time and we will just keep you in our thoughts and prayers untill you feel ready to come back. So glad you ae eating.

Hugs Ginger Jasper and his mum Carol xx

Finni said...

Well done Charlie and his mum for looking after you so well. DWB is full of caring people with a love for their pooches/kitties/hammies and friendship for like-minded people ... and the internet is a wonderful thing. It's good to hear that you are eating Lulu, even if it's all in a daze. You know what they say 'Time is a healer'.

Elke, Finni & Nelly xxx

William Tell said...

We like our fellow doggie bloggers better than a lot of folks out there we meet every day. Kindred spirits, and all that. Besides, people and their dogs resemble each other not only in looks but in personalities, so blogs are a reflection of both parties.

That means since I've got heavy eyebrows and whiskers, Glynn has trouble seeing at the moment, and Cap is old and chunky, I think Mom's in trouble. Ha!

But seriously, we do care about each other, and we'll help see you through the valleys in life.

William Tell

the 4 Bs said...

Charlie has some wonderful moms to bring you some nourishment to keep you going. we're glad that so many people are supporting you and taking care of you. DWB is an amazing supportive community of dogs (and our peeps). and you continue to be in our thoughts.


Shmoo said...

I think dog people really know the true meaning of unconditional love... we learn it from the best source.

Glad you are eating, because I was going to send Meeshka your way to claw you into eating :)

now, because this is actually Meeshka's account: pfffft, you should trade all that vegetarian stuff in for a big vat of livergreat.

Meeshka and the human woman

Persephone and Buster said...

good girl -- charlie's mom! LuLu, we are glad you're eating and staying healthy for bogart and you. harumph to people who think moi and blog buddies don't write these they really think our humans have all this time to sit in front of a 'puter... tsk tsk to them.. dogs have a life too -- they just don't have opposable thumbs...but we can search out the letters and use one toe nail to type with ;o]]]
it's good to see both of you writing on the blog.. lay low..
we are there when you need us!!
theBUSTER, Ms.Persephone & Ms. Blue too.

Alasandra said...

Our Mom says she knows what you mean. Sometimes people think she is nuts cause she lets us share her blog. But she says the cat and doggie bloggers we have meet are the nicest bloggers she (we) knows.

We are so glad you have some yummy food to eat. Full stomaches make everthing a little bit better.

Your love for Klaus and the beautiful things you have written have really touched our souls. ~Socks, Scylla, Charybdis, Fenris & Alasandra

Sophie Brador said...

Lulu, I didn't really know you or Bogart all that well, but over the past few weeks have been following your lives quite closely and my heart just goes out to you. I have to admit that I have done the same when talking (or not talking) to my friends about Sophie's blog, but I also admit readily that the people I have met face to face and online are an absolutely amazing, interesting, wacky, fabulous group of people. I wish only the best for you and Bogie over this next while. I am sure the adjustment has been unbelievably difficult and I am so glad that you have each other to hug.

Sherry & Sophie Brador

P.S. A little bit jealous that you got to meet Charlie and his moms. What a wonderful thing for them to do.

The 3 G-Dales said...

Lu-Lu and Bogart...
it is thru my own tears of sorrow for you both that I am writing to let you know that you are many strangers.....See, you are special because of your love and care of animals and ALL the humans that touch their lives. That's why we are all "here" blogging. So we can share this great wealth of feelings and care with one another.

The Griffindales trust that Klaus is watching over you both with great love and care himself and we - your blogging community of friends - will help in the love and care of Lu-Lu and Bogart for him until you all meet again...

With much love and sympathy for you, airehugs and aireprayers, we wish you peace and comfort...

Mumsie and the Griffindales....