Lucy is 14 today.
I can barely remember her whelping day. I was heavily involved in the event that was called Y2K. We were having weekly statewide exercises, weekly department wide exercises, and I in my wisdom decided that each facility needed to have at least one exercise. Busy time.
At any rate, the whelping was fine and by the end of January they had all left but Lucy.
I can remember the struggles to get her to steady up for multiple marks. I can remember the fact that she couldn't handle anything further than a 50 yard blind until Paul Kartes got hold of her. He started working on the problem and soon called me to say that he'd quit working on the problem as she was now doing 300 yard blinds. He sent the photo to prove it.
We never could get her to calm down enough to handle a 2 day Master event. By the end of the 1st day her excitement level started to rise and by the time I got her out of the crate on the 2nd day, she'd break with the best of them. A club test called the WCI has 4 marks. Fortunately controlled breaks are allowed. Once while running the WCI she broke 5 times on 4 marks but was controlled every time. For a period, she was under such pressure not to break that she'd slide behind me and peek out from behind my legs to see the second and subsequent marks. She just plain wanted to go.
Still, she was the first female Toller to complete the AKC SH and the HRC HRCh.
But, for all the Lucy stories ... like the time she was trapped indoors when the house burned to the ground. What I remember with the fondest was Lucy walking around our yard with the fawn deer walking along behind her. It happened several times. We would call her to say the deer was in the yard. Out she'd go to wander the yard with the fawn in tow. One day, the fawn just stopped coming. (Since we live in the middle of a 200 acre subdivision without hunting, I prefer to just think she just outgrew this behavior.) Lucy still goes out with me to feed the deer. A herd of 8-10 eat corn from a feeder in the front yard and she goes along to make certain I put the corn out right.
She's slowed down a bit, her eyesight has diminished, and she's deaf as a post. Still, she rules the roost with a patient hand. Nary a sound from her but the others all look to her for permission from time to time.
So ... Happy Birthday Lucy.