Official home of Joan Merriam:
author, college instructor, speaker, inveterate gardener,
sword-wielding advocate for justice, lover of frogs and roses, and adoring aficionado of Golden Retrievers
Whether you're a student, a friend, a reader (thank you!), or someone who just stumbled onto these pages on your way tooh, say, a web site on ancient Sanskrit riddlesthanks so much for stopping by.
Feel free to get comfortable...have a cup of coffee...and stay as long as you like. Hopefully there'll be a few things here that will interest, intrigue, excite, or otherwise entertain youbut if there's something special you'd like to see, be sure to let me know.
As time goes along I'll be adding a few more things here and there...but for now, read on and enjoy your visit!
One of the most painful parts of having animal companions in our lives is that, for the most part, we outlive them. Such was the case with my dear, sweet cat Zoey, who crossed the Rainbow Bridge on July 28.
As the official Miracle Cat of my veterinarian's entire practice, Zoey survived not one, but two cardiac emboli in the past year...something that my vet said is virtually unheard-of. After that first clot, we knew his time on earth was limitedbut against all odds, he remained full of crazy-cat life until the end. Then at 6:30 that Saturday morning in July, he experienced another embolism...and an hour later, he was gone.
I remain deep in heartbreak, although I know his spirit is once again at play with his beloved Golden companions Shiloh and Sammi.
Goldens in My Life
I'm a huge fan of Golden Retrievers. Period. End of sentence. Drop voice.
My first Golden came to me in June of 1995 in the person of a beautiful boy I named Shiloh, and who was with me for 14 years. A year after I adopted Shiloh, I adopted a sweet little girl named Sammi, who stayed with me on this earth until she was 14½.
Now, I have brought another Golden into my life and heart.
Casey came to me in the late spring of 2010 through the great people at Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue (www.homewardboundgoldens.org)and even though I wasn't planning to adopt an older dog, you know what they say about those best-laid plans. I firmly believe that the spirits of my Shiloh and Sammi played a part in the whole thing...and when this gorgeous, 85-pound 8-year-old boy walked over and looked into my eyes, it was all over.
Casey has now become a Certified Therapy Dog through Therapy Dogs, Inc. , and we visit convalescent facilities, hospitals, rehabilitation centers and schools together. (In the picture at left, he's wearing his Therapy Dog jacketin purple, of course!) His favorite things are love and treats, and depending upon the day, one or the other will be in first place. Apart from dog cookies, he adores people, other dogs, cats, and I think if I had a gerbil, he'd love those too.
Beginning in May of 2012, I began writing about life with dogs in a monthly column called "Casey's Corner" for our local newspaper, The Union. I've posted the columns here for those of you who don't subscribe, or who prefer a digital version.
All in all, I'm looking forward to many more years of companionship, love, and adventures as I travel through life with my best friend Casey!
Just so you can share them, too, here are a couple of shots of my first two Goldens, Shiloh and Sammi, who are patiently waiting for me on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge.
(And don't hesitate to write to me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org .)