One of our children asked us recently to dog-sit for four days while she and her husband went off to celebrate their first anniversary. We agreed, the then the date got pushed out to Labor Day weekend, due to a work emergency. The change was not a problem for us, but it necessitated quite a few changes for them.
They were going far north, to a place the husband had never been, but daughter's very good friend lives there and she has been there often. Sight-seeing, as well as visiting with the friend and her family were on the docket.
Daughter's very good friend has had a Bernese mountain dog for nine years. I had never met the dog, but it felt as if I had, since I'd been hearing about him and seeing photos for nearly a decade. Daughter has often been heard to say that her friend would be devastated if her dog got ill and even more so if the dog died. He has been her constant companion for so long. A huge dog who is, nonetheless, afraid of his shadow.
Of all the weekends for anything like that to happen, the dog has been exhibiting symptoms for a few days, such as not eating or sleeping, and being very lethargic. They made an emergency trip to the vet yesterday and found out that the dog has liver cancer. It is advanced enough that chemotherapy would be to no avail. Daughter's friend is just as devastated as we thought she would be - and we are very glad that daughter is there to help with the grief that is coming. There are no coincidences in life; only synchronicity. I believe that the trip had to be postponed so that our daughter could be there at the appointed time with her friend, to give support and succor.
On Sunday, our son and his family (minus the new college student) came to visit, and our first-born daughter came with two of her kids. The daughter who is away said that she was glad we were having a party in her house while she was out of town. One of first daughter's girls couldn't come then; she was working, but she came today, with her sister. We were very pleased to see them and spend time with them. Mr. kenju always goes into "stand-up comedian" mode when young people are around. He's isn't often successful at it, but they laugh anyway, and it makes him puff up with pleasure and boundless ego.