This post was published to Ziggy Stardust Sheep Tales at 15:09:48 08/10/2013
Skye and Billie Get Married
As promised in the last blog entry I will depart from the sheep theme to describe a very special event in Catterick that we were delighted to attend in September 2012, the ‘wedding’ of Ziggy and Stardust’s parents Skye and Billie. I know this sounds ridiculous but the tale should be told in full to explain the reasons, thought and downright wonderful people involved.
We were delighted to be joined by the Jones family for a very wet BBQ to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in May but I was somewhat taken aback when Simon shared the news that he had been posted to Afghanistan for 6 months later in the year. While always interested and supportive of the efforts made by UK troops around the world I had never actually known anyone personally affected and involved. I was impressed with how the whole family was taking this in their stride although they were clearly concerned and not relishing the idea one bit.
Apparently when the kids were asked what they would like to do to give Simon a send-off party to remember, the idea of a doggy wedding was born. Invites went out to members of the extended Border Collie family from both of Skye’s litters and the date was entered in our diary.
What a great day, surrounded by dogs, kids, beer, food and great friends. I managed to avoid letting Ziggy bite too many children and apart from poor Billie having to be separated from the pack for large periods, all the dogs got along just fine. My favourite photo from the day is shown below with Skye showing Hattie, Hugo, Stardust and Ziggy how to properly focus on a relentless game of fetch:
The whole event was a reason for getting the puppies back together and sharing the chaos, in that it worked very well and everyone had a great day and night, the big walk on Sunday with dogs large and small was all part of the fun and a much appreciated hangover cure.
I wanted to include this brief chapter as a blog entry on its own simply to make a couple of points that with me being English and a bloke would otherwise never be said.
Firstly, I am so pleased that through our love of dogs we have now made some fantastic new friends who will visit and be visited for years to come.
Secondly and more importantly, I want to record my admiration and thanks to the whole Jones family and all service families, for the sacrifices they make on behalf of the whole country. Only the extremes, good and bad, tend to make the news but sacrifices are being made day in, day out by all the forces and their families. To spend 6 months with a parent away from a home with 4 young kids amidst a background full of reminders of the potential for danger is a sacrifice indeed. The strength and determination to remain positive throughout and to embrace such challenges is a credit to all those involved.
I am grateful for the efforts you all make and extremely proud to count such heroes as my friends.
Now, back to the sheep…….