Saturday, October 31, 2009

Paranoia?



In my previous post "UBUNTU" I wrote an update because there happened something very weird that we didn't trust.

Only a few hours later, after I had published that post, I was working on my Apple Mac Book and I was reading blogs.

While I was searching in the field: "next blog", on the left side on top of my blog, suddenly, instead that I came on a “next blog”, I received a message from a virus-scanner that my Win. operating system was infected.


How is that possible! I work with Apple and I receive a warning for an other operating system than where I work with.

Very strange!

We could not close that message, we were blocked. They gave us only one possibility, accept the offer to install it, which means: to buy it. Of course we wouldn't do that.

Because my husband didn't trust this at all, he Googled on it on our other computer and found out that it was: Malware!

He decided to give the computer a restart. Thereafter the computer worked again as normal.


This was something we never had experienced before.

Therefore we are now very suspicious: I only “once” mentioned the name of the operating system of our other computer on my Apple, and I get malware.

You can't even trust blogs. They present themselves as a blog, but they aren't, they are “hackers”, who try to sell a program and/or cause problems.


In what a world do we live! Who can we still trust!

Is this paranoia or am I only just precocious?


PS: I hope that this explanation was not too ridiculous, I don't know that much about computers and I am also not so familiar with computer language (still learning).

I only wanted to warn you.


Friday, October 23, 2009

True Love!





They say "a picture is worth a thousand words", so I don't have to use many words. These images show how close our bond was.

This was our normal early morning ritual and the first thing we did after she entered the laundry room.
She really enjoyed it, she couldn't get enough of it. If my husband then came too close to us while we cuddled she became angry. My husband had to be carefull or she picked him in the nose, or she attacked him. Of course it wasn't a violent attack, but sometimes she squeezed his skin so hard that he had contusions.
She then could be very proud when he backed off. It seemed as if she saw this as a victory. As long as he stayed in the neighborhood she kept an eye at him!


This scene makes me happy again, happy... because we had the privilege to may have known her.
It was a beautiful time.
I wonder if there is someone else who had also such a close bond with a duck? 
If that's the case, please let me know. I would be grateful!

She was such a little darling.
I hope you've enjoyed this beautiful memory!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Days After


The first morning that we awoke without her was for us a very emotional laden moment.
We missed the usual morning ritual, her warm morning welcome quacking. The sight of her empty nest was almost unbearable. We sat in silence, having our breakfast on the kitchen table ... gazing outside. We both had problems to speak about the future and what to do now.
Therefore we left everything outside in the garden as it was and we took the time to see the film pictures of her in better times.
That was what we needed!
It felt so good to see her as baby, as toddler, how we made nests together and how she gave me cuddles.
We both could smile again after such a long time of sadness. We considered ourselves so lucky to have known her.
The next days we spend most of our time to see the film pictures of her and to convert them from VHS to DVD (to secure them). In the mean time I was writing down the posts for my blog (I can also use this to tell Pipke's full story).

Then I was thinking: what a way to tell a story! You don't know yet how it started (if you have not read the short story on Jen's blog) and now I told you already the end, but I assure you: the between story will surprise you.

Afraid that I would forget things, I wrote down everything that I could remember. Writing down her story gave me solace, it seemed as if she was still alive as long as I wrote about her. Sometimes it was very difficult to keep my emotions under control and I could not concentrate on other matters than Pipke.
TV or radio, I could not stand it. A beautiful song made me cry.
I couldn't sleep well because I relived over and over again Pipke's struggle.

Days we avoided contact with people who knew Pipke because we were afraid to lose control about our emotions.
So now and then we walked through the garden to her pond. Everything lay there still as she had left the place for the last time.
We both noticed that the world around us sounded so much different, it was such an immense silence now.
First we didn't know what to do with her inclosure, now that the place was no longer needed. After a while we decided to leave it as it was, this would be her place for ever. In Spring we are going to clean the place up and make a beautiful spot of it.

The morning that we planned to remove her veranda to the back of the garden my husband called me: "come quick ...look!" Several little birds sat on Pipke's veranda (I could take a picture of one). This was the first time that this happened. It seemed almost if they came looking for Pipke.



Now her veranda has a place in the back of our garden, behind the edge, and now it stores a small lawn mower.
For the first time since we live in our house we had to mow the lawn without her.
Gardening without our “garden assistant” Is no longer fun, it has lost the luster it once had, now we do it because it must be done.
When Pipke was still here we were outside as much as we could. Even when it rained or in Winter we spend at least one and a half hour in the garden with her, since she died... our back door remains closed for days .
Since I stood there with her on the window, looking outside into the garden, also I have lost interest for the outside world. I never could imagine that my life would be so empty without her.

Now I am reading the book that I ordered so long ago: Wesley the Owl, written by Stacey O'Brien.
It gives me so much consolation! I discovered not only that we experienced both so much the same but also that the way I behave now is not abnormal. Stacey also became very emotional when Wesley died. Of course, as a biologist she approached her story also scientific, but she felt the same for Wesley as I felt for Pipke.

At the moment that I was reading page 36 (love me, love my owl) I became curious and went to the end of the book. I discovered that when Stacey reads books with animal stories she often reads the end of these books first. I did the same.
She wrote what also I think and feel, I quote: “the one thing that I hate about animal stories is that after you've almost read the entire book and you really care about the animal, they go and tell you all about how the animal died. So you should stop reading now if you don't want to hear about Wesley dying. But I need to tell you.”
I also needed to tell Pipke's story, I wanted you to know how wonderful she was, I wanted to share this with you.
I only do regret that I confronted you with dead and grief, pain and sorrow, I wished I could tell you that she lived for ever, but ... that's something that only happens in fairy tales and this is: reality!
Now I envy Stacey a little because, she had the opportunity to tell her story before a life audience, she had someone who encouraged and helped her to write the book. That's something I will never experience, but she deserves the success with her book. She made this beautiful story possible.

Thus, I will comfort myself with the idea that maybe someone reads Pipke's story here on blogger, and I hope ... that this someone comes at the end to the conclusion: (not taken into account the mistakes in my English grammar or my lack of writers talent) that it was worth to have read it.
If that's the case, then I will be pleased!
Now, before you all get enough of this (if that's not already the case), and although I still mourn, from now on, no more tears*, I am going to try only to smile because she has lived.

Till next time....with beautiful memories!:)

PS: * I promise to do my best!
Now I am going to read the middle part of Stacey's book.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Pipke's Very Last Journey




Already a few days before... we had prepared everything for Pipke's last journey.
We'd expected it much earlier but she was a fighter, she would not give up so easy, and now it had happened... Pipke was no longer there. She had lost her very last battle after such a fierce fight, now she had peace.
I held her still warm but lifeless little body in my arms as long as I could. We gave her a last cuddle and laid her to rest in her plastic container. It was her own container, she traveled in it 295 times to the vet and also at least 15 times to the children's farm which we visited when she was only a few months old. She knew that container very well, when she saw it she knew that it meant: going to the vet.
Many years before the vet had handed us a brochure with information about a crematorium for animals. Every time Pipke went ill we were afraid that we had to use it, and now we had to, it became reality.
My husband called the crematorium to make an appointment. They asked us which animal it concerned. Of course they were very surprised to hear that it went about: a duck. That was something that they had not yet encountered. First they said that they didn't cremate farm animals (to prevent the spread of contagious diseases), but when we told them the name off our vet and that he had given us their address, that she was a pet and never had contact with other ducks, they agreed.
We could bring her to them.
They expected us at 3.45 PM. They told us that it was important to keep her as cold as possible and therefore we kept Pipke in her container (well covered) outside, at the place where once her dog's nest stood.
In the meantime we tried to sleep but we didn't succeed in it, we were too much occupied with what had happened and what still would go to happen. Before we had to leave we gave her still a cuddle... she felt so cold now! It was a creepy sensation, after to have felt her warmth all those years.
Our heart broke when we left the house with her for the last time. As usual we turned on the alarm installation.
That makes a beeping noise ... it made her always aware that we went, and it also warned her when we came back home (then the beep was longer).
It was every time such a warm welcome when we came back home, she could be so happy to see us back. Then she started quacking very loud.. and when the back door opened then not soon enough she knocked with her beak on the door until it went open. (You can compare it with the welcome a dog gives you.)
Then it was time to cuddle! She had so much to tell us then, of course in her own language, the whole time quacking and making funny noises. Thereafter we had to make a walk in the garden and then my hubby searched together with her after earth worms. That was a real treat for her, and when the worms came not quick enough to the surface (my hubby planted a fork in the soil and knocked on it, and so they were forced to come to the surface) she began to peck on my hubby's shoes as if she was saying: come on man ... let them come!

Anyhow, we drove to the crematorium in silence. That silence was only broken off to pick up memories of the happy times together with her, or to talk about her last days. We still tried to convince ourselves that we had done what we thought was best for her. We comforted each other with the words: it has been a good time together with her ... we never had wanted to miss it.
When we arrived at the crematorium they received us with sympathy. They asked us of course how it came that we had a duck as pet and we told them the short story of Pipke. They could understand that we had such a close bond with her, they understood our grief. They said that they had even snakes and iguana to cremate, animals with a much less charming appearance than Pipke, but also much loved by the owners.
They took the container with Pipke, they would prepare her so that we could say farewell to her.
After a while they brought us to a small hall (screened with a curtain) which was situated right in front of the furnace. We could take as much time as we liked to say farewell.
What disturbed us when we entered that small place was ... the noise of the burner... that was such a creepy noise ... it seemed almost if the burner was impatient and greedy to consume his next prey. Pipke was now literally his “sitting duck” (as they say in English).
She lay there on a small table on a plaid with dogs foot prints (of course they had no duck foot prints in stock). She was covered with a small blanket, only showing her head and neck. The place was beautiful decorated and only lightened by burning candles. It was very hot in there.
First we stood there for a while in silence, then we took a few pictures, gave her a cuddle and kissed her for the very last time.



When we came outside they comforted us and suggested us to wait in a salon while the cremation took place. It would be finished after an half hour. They offered us a cup of coffee and if we liked we could watch National Geographic on TV, but we were not interested in it.
While we were waiting there we saw that a van arrived. A man and a woman stepped out and opened the back door and then a young corpulent huge guy stepped out, it seemed almost a giant. He behaved very weird ... swinging his arms to all directions ... gesturing ... talking loud. They brought a very large black dead dog, covered with a blanket ... we only could see his head. Thereafter we saw the young guy in an other small hall (the curtains were not closed) hugging his dog while he still kept swinging his hands, walking back and forth around the dog. We both thought that there was something wrong with this young man, this was not only grief.

After waiting half an hour they asked us to come to the office to fill in the required papers and to choose an urn. We chose one in the form of a little heart, a golden one.
While we were waiting for Pipke's remains we talked with the lady behind the desk about animals and the influence they can have on someone's life.

Then she asked us if we had seen that heavy huge young guy.
She told us that this was such an extreme sad story.
That young giant was a mentally retarded boy, not yet 18 years old. He had periods that he became very violent, he even attacked his parents, they were afraid to be alone in the house with him. Therefore they had bought him this dog when he was only 11 years old, and since then it went much better with him. There still had been moments of very aggressive behavior but then the dog could calm him down. The parents had tried to find a place for him in a mentally retarded relief center for the weekends (to have a break, to have some rest) but they found no place for him because they couldn't handle him, they couldn't keep him under control.
Now that young guy's best friend was dead, the best that could happen to him, to calm him down was no longer there! Now he had no more grip on his life and the parents had lost not only a best friend but also their greatest support in hard times.
They were afraid for what was going to happen now, they didn't know what they could expect.
They were downhearted, afraid to go home. Their life must be a nightmare.

After this conversation the lady on the desk handed us Pipke's golden heart and a certificate that declared that the ashes in it were Pipke's. They said that only two tablespoons remained of her tiny body.

When we drove home we were sad, but our sadness faded for a while when we thought on the parents and their retarded giant and we said to each other: life isn't fair!

Coming home ... I must not describe it ... you can imagine.
We took Pipke's golden heart and gave it a special place. Since then we strike her heart often when we pass by, when we are going to sleep ... every morning that we awake.


Now we must learn to live with her absence and that's not easy. In the garden we still find feathers of her covered under the plants.
They say: time heals all wounds ... I hope that this wound will heal also ... but it will leave behind a great scar.
From now on our life will be divided in two parts ... the time together with Pipke ... and the time after.
That time thereafter is of less importance for me ... I prefer to think on the time with her ... on the beautiful happy moments we had together. The best part of our life!
We have many film pictures of her and I will show them to you in the near future. So you can see how she really was: a happy wonderful little creature!
Two days after she died my husband discovered that he forgot to rip off the blades from the almanac which hangs in our garage. That was something he never forgot ... it seemed as if the world had stood still!
My husband got tears in his eyes when he read the text on the reverse side of Monday September 14*, it said:
In an embittered world a drop of love is as an
ocean in the desert .

The love she gave us had the equivalent of all oceans together.
We are so grateful for it


PS:* I can hear you thinking out loud now: she is inventing this, this suits well in the story!
No, I'm really telling the truth, here is the proof! (see picture)
Translate the left text below, this is the reverse side of the blade.



Friday, October 2, 2009

Finally


Three months ago I ordered the book: Wesley the owl, written by Stacey O'Brien.
After waiting so long I received today the message that it's arrived.
Today I went to the home page of Stacey O'Brien, and there I discovered a You Tube film of her together with Wesley.
Stacey and Wesley
This was so beautiful to see! It was almost if I saw myself and Pipke! She also gave me to eat, she played with my eyelashes without hurting me, she cuddled me like Wesley did, she understood me, we had our own vocabulary. We even made nests together, she also was my mate.
I find it so unfortunate that I couldn't read the book before Pipke died. I am looking forward to read it now and I hope that it can give me comfort.