When I first spoke to Dr. Karen Thompson, she told me that she believed that God wanted Red and I to be together. I thought this was odd, and I did not believe it. Karen is a powerful woman with good instincts and she has shaken up my ideas about me, God and dogs. I cannot really imagine how she decided that Red and I belonged together, but I will not be so quick to raise my eyebrows about the spiritual leanings of people.
I don’t really remember life before Red, he is one of those dogs that slips into your life like a limb and works his way into your heart and the hearts of lots of other people. Red is a potent mix of intense and affectionate. When he goes through the pasture gate, he is transformed, his ears go up, his body rigid, his eyes light up like yellow lasers. On the other side of the gate, he is as affectionate a dog as I know. Yesterday, a friend – Mandy-Meyer-Hill the founder of Stairway Healing Arts – invited me and Red to a meditation group she is starting. Do you want me to bring the dog?, I asked. Red and Mandy have a special connection, she drove to Virginia to pick Red up and bring him to Bedlam Farm. He melts into the ground when he sees her.
We came to her meditation room and at first, Red went up to greet the other people present. They were all still. He looked up at me and I shook my head and pointed to the space behind me and he walked over and lay down there. I held up my hand, as in “stay,” and he went to sleep. When the bell sounded, he got up. Today I went back and Red simply went into a corner and went to sleep, and remained still for half an hour.
As great as his herding skills are, and they are great, this is his greatest gift. He can enter any space and understand what he is and isn’t expected to do. Right now, he is lying under my desk quietly as he always does when I turn the computer on. What God says.