Chapter 5

The Bright Light of Kronos

Running through the damp streets of Encinitas early in the morning, the trees dripping their raindrops from the fog, there appeared in my minds eye a white dog, small, incredibly independent, and most of all filled with an energy which radiated around him like a sun.

It had been two years since my gallant Kruger had gone on his “journey” and I had not thought about another Shepherd, because no one could take the Krugie place. His gentleness was always his hallmark, and his eyes filled with such giving love was my solace through the death of my Sister Nancy. Never the less, running on this morning up and down the hills of Village Park, my climbs were unaware in my mind for this new small light of the White Pup blotted out the hardness of the task of running.

“Kronos” the name popped into my consciousness, the vision of a white German Shepherd Dog was to be my new companion. How this came to be is a story of both joy and great sadness which even today will bring tears.

We found him in Oceanside. On top of a hill with the Sea in the background, it seemed like he had the gift of light held tightly in his small body. Finding his little self among the rest of his siblings, I picked him up and trudged back up the hill to finalize his papers of purchase. His home coming was an adventure for unlike the little Krugie who snuggled in my lap on the way home, Kronos was kissing, hopping, and wedging his way among my lap and over to Robert.

“Keep him still” Bob said and although I tried, his warm little body was a quivering bundle of energy that easily slipped through my arms and made the entire car his  world for exploring.

We now had two Shepherds, the beautiful black Karla and the very small white Kronos who made Karla’s life quite miserable for the first few days. She finally put her paw down, and the small white self, sat back on his haunches and just looked at her like he now had a new mother, one who was not white, but a black care taker would not be fussed and bothered.  

Our Days in Encinitas came to an end when Robert retired for the third time and we moved to Sun City in Palm Desert. The move was fraught with the usual moving stresses and most of the stress emanated from the two car transportation caravan, with Robert in his red Mustang convertible with Karla looking out the back window, and me in the Toyota with the explosive energy of the Kronos.

By now, the small white bundle had become a full sized Shepherd but had not filled out his final bulk. He now weighed in at about 95 pounds. The energy never let up, if I could have bottled it, we would now be millionaires. This unending energy was infused into our entire house hold. It kept us young in the keeping up of his daily walks, and playtimes. He was in short, our battery of youth, our daily games of learning the steps of life, and our shining white sunlight of eternal energy.

Do Shepherds Dance…? I had always thought they were so well contained within their own regal selves that they did not. I had never seen any of our Shepherds dance, although Krugie did jump around his little tree in circles until it died. But now, now this new white light of Shepherdness did dance. He never stopped and invited us to go with him into his green fields of happiness of the Young.

We did not take to the deathly hot environment of the Desert. The heat melted everything and it was not to be the dream retirement that we had sought. I had just recovered from a broken back and through it all Robert and the Shepherds took care and gave me succor. The healing process long as it was made bearable by the constant energy of the Kronos filling my days with light and kisses.
Tea with Robert and Kronos
on a rainy afternoon,,,

To Eureka we did journey. Was this beautiful small town to be our final home of retirement? Not knowing is the thing of the quest, and the journey is an adventure to be embraced and made ours. The Shepherds rode in the back of the Sienna and we made good time traveling, the coolness of the coast of California seemed like heaven contrasted with the crucible of the desert. Never looked back, never will go there again, I have lived too long by the Sea, and the Sea is my rhythmic life force. Eureka was to be the new Ocean of our lives and the new Art Town I had always wanted to be a part of.

We did find our Green Fields, for the Kronos to dance in. Far and wide he ranged, running, hiding, dancing, looking round the bushes for his Karla who walked sedately in her growing old self, wondering why this young whelp was so lighting fast in his quest of the dance. We, Robert and I were in our golden years, but the golden was made brighter by the radiance of the Kronos.

The part I miss most about living in Eureka is the Rain. When we first moved there until the day we left, I loved to stand outside in the rain, looking up at the sky, waving my arms like a seagull flying through the grey rainy sky. Wonderful wetness I was starved for, lapping it up like a puppy, I felt as though I was a child again, and my inner self was being watered and fed and made well. The creaky back was lubricated with the moisture of the rain, my eyes were blinking in the drops of water which made me see the rainbows, my heart was pumping in the joy of the newness of rain, and I was at last in the place of Sea, Rain, and the Art World.  
The Black and White
Eureka CA
Kronos Grew! Topping out at 135 lbs, he was a giant with a shining heart. His ways of looking at you were far beyond the knowing of most fur people. His eyes were golden. He watched with constant concern about what we were doing and where we were going. His joy of being was beyond my knowledge of any other dog we had ever owned. Perhaps this concept of owning was the point. We did not own Kronos, he was his self, an aware consciousness which was beyond the concept of Ownership. His gentleness and intelligence put him in another class
Shepherdness. As our Vet used to say, Shepherd are Shepherds, all other dogs are just dogs.

Kronos was evolving. Our home in Eureka shared a driveway with another family and he did not take kindly to this arrangement. I have often wondered how a dog makes the unmarked boundaries of his yard. Even from inside the house, they know when there are “others” in their jurisdiction. Women and girls did not seem to bother the Kronos, but males had a terrible reaction from him. He seemed to think that he was the Alpha and in many ways he was as Robert never had the control to keep him as a Beta. The whiteness was perhaps the untamed wolf in him, the “keeper” of the pack. Worshiping me as his special human was his only job in our cave.

The situation was exacerbated one day when the young boy from across the street came in our house. Krugie lunged, and just brushed Kyle's throat  giving all of us a scare that was the beginning of the end. In my mind there was reluctance to accept that this was one of the signs of a dog you could not keep where people other than the owners were present. Two days later, Kronos escaped from the yard when Robert opened the gate. The family we shared the driveway with had a small dog which the kept chained up. It was a very long chain and did not keep Panché from our yard.  The infuriated bundle of a 45 lb. Panché and the silent hulk of the White lighting collided into a surging, jumbled incredibly shrieking tormented fighting mass looking like nothing could stop the conclusive ending of the death of Panché.  Somehow the woman who owned Panché broke them apart, and I grabbing Kronos, and retaining him with his choke chain, I got him back into the yard. Never did he give me pause for touching him with his fighting blood hot in his eye, but gave me complete control to end the outcome and bring the fight to s stop.
The Longest Day...
filled with love and knowing

I knew. He knew. We both looked into each others eyes and knew. Calling up the Vet I made the appointment. The breaking of my heart was just beginning. For the rest of the day the Krony and I sat in the back yard looking at the shadows of the tree leaves dancing on the patio. His great white head resting on his paws, he from time to time looked at me with the golden eyes saying he was sorry, that he knew what was to come and that he accepted the trial for the end of his being. We sat there for many hours, the light slowly fading from this terrible day, and his awareness of the way forward for us both.

The next morning, we left for the final time in the Sienna, He in the back of the car, and Robert and I in front. The way seemed a blur of timelessness. The arrival to the place surreal. I was not functioning very well, for the tears are the clouding of my mind’s lost place.
He walked beside us and was knowing and aware of the newness of the place. He sniffed the air so close to the Sea we both love. Walking inside I was lost to the surroundings and cannot describe even today anything about the place. He, kind and loving as always gave me his last gift, one of obedience when the Vet lifted him up onto the table.

Is there a life spark? Yes, Yes, there is. For as his eyes closed,  his golden eyes with the look of love had an intensity I have never known said to me.." I love". The Spark of Life like a lighting bolt flew from his eyes into my heart and left a wound there. His spark, his death, my love collided; it reverberates within my chest and will not still. His dance has become my heart beat…
He waits for Me...

I see that spark today as though it happened but a second ago…
My tears flow and I stop writing now…