Chapter 4
 The Soft Light of Knowing…

As the musical notes of Chopin’s Etudes play in my ear, I am finally able to write about the history of my journey into the Beagle story. It all starts with an attempted rape and maybe worse when we lived in Newport Beach California.

It was my early morning habit to run about 2 miles in the hope that it would make my bones stronger and keep my aging body from the ills of old age. Though I was only 41 at the time, it seemed that, that fate loomed on the horizon and I was determined to keep at bay this thing called old.

The morning was clear and the surf was booming, I could hear it from our home on the Island called Lido. Climbing on my bike I rode to the beach and hoped to run into the state called bliss. The Ocean has always been my other self, and the beauty and power of it keeps me nourished in my soul. 

Ran I Did. Climbing back on my bike, I was suddenly thrown from behind by a hooded stranger to the sand with great force. Landing on my back I could see his eyes, never to forget even to this day, the green blue hue which was at complete odds with his Hispanic heritage. Those eyes were filled with intent and angry energy fueled by something I did not recognize. His intent was clear with his words of crazy visions of what he was going to do with me…

“I am going to take you into the alley and there I will do with you anything I wish and finally kill you”.

With a knife at my throat and pinned by his arm across my chest, the only thing I could do was to talk. And talk I did…in a very calm and soft voice I asked him not to hurt my ear as it was just recently pierced, and as that request  was  far from his intentions he complied. I kept talking, with the hope someone would come along the boardwalk as it usually had runners at this time of day.

Luckily for me, two men were approaching, and though I could not see them, my attacker did. Hurriedly he got up and started running away. He screamed as he went, “I know who you are, and I know where you live and if you tell the police, I will come and kill you”.

I did tell the Police of course, and the Lady Sergeant said, “Get a big Dog when you run in the morning and take him with you”.

This attacker knifed two other women in the area, and brutally disfigured one and almost killed the other. They never found him… 

We did get a big dog. Miss Waldo was our first German Shepherd Dog  and we were never to have the security problem again.

It is said that GSDs are fur people and all the rest are just dogs. I do know that Shepherds have a greater intelligence than most dogs and I think also some humans. Their eyes have a quality of knowing, which shines, and glows about them, and becomes a form of communication where human words are not needed. I remember Miss Waldo sitting on the passenger side of my van when we were touring the scenic Coast Highway in Northern California. She looking at the beautiful pastures with cows and I driving the curves of this most engaging roadway as it twists and bends along the Sea.

"A Sideways Glance"

Glancing sideways at Miss Waldo, it hit me with a force that is still visceral, that she was my mental companion of a journey into a new adventure. That is another story. Is it real, this knowing of another living being not human but aware of the presence of another? I can say without a doubt that it is. We did not speak aloud, but each turned to our view of the journey with like minds in an appreciation for the impulse of a mind touch.

Miss Waldo lived with us for 13 years, she was the first, but not the last of the German Shepherds who came into our lives with the great heart of love, protectiveness, and above all the soft light of Knowing. The succeeding Shepherds, Karina, Kruger, Karla and lastly, Kronos were our friends who still even today are with us in a way that human family members are not. I guess it is because their entire existence is predicated upon the genetic code of “the protector” instinct. I don’t need pictures to feel this gift from our Shepherd family, they are embedded deep into my mind’s eye and heart with a feeling of gratitude for their sharing love and knowing. 

So this brings me to the last of the Shepherds. Kronos, the bright, brilliant and bravest of all who’s memory will always bring the tears of guilt, hurt, and love, and made me realize that this thing called the “spark of life” is a real and visible thing and gives off an energy which will never die.   

So now the tears do come…and the writing stops, but will continue for the story has to be told…