I seem to be writing these blogs on friends passing over the rainbow bridge far too often for my liking. I wish I didn’t have to consider what to write about friends, both near and far, who I have met personally or known through the medium of social media.
I have had the privilege, nay the honour, of knowing Charley Beagle since my very early days on Twitter. He was one of my first friends and I knew immediately that he and his spaniel brother Boot were fun, friendly and good pals to know and woof with. He lived in the countryside in Shropshire, UK and was always regaling us with his tales of sheep herding, chicken corralling, chatting with cows and helping the farmers out with their daily tasks in the fields and meadows. Both Charley and Boot were wonderfully gentle and understanding with all the other creatures they came into contact with. The sheep took a shine to Boot and the various videos made everyone smile and laugh.
Charley would tell us what it was like on the hills around his house, making us jealous of his adventures, including strolling to the pub and getting tickles and food from the landlord or the regulars at the bar. He would be out in all weathers to enjoy the seasons and bring us all the lovely views and vistas into Wales and Shropshire. A good hearted country dog who had the best of all worlds with love and friendship amidst the knowledge of a warm bed and the promise of more adventures to sleep and dream about.
I first met Charley in December 2016 just before Christmas. It was an annual gathering near Sheffield in Yorkshire to place memorials to those people and their fur buddies who had departed that year and remember those who we loved and missed. There were a few of my twitter pals there. I saw Charley straight away and he was eager to get on with the walk and sniff new smells and explore new places. At the cafe afterwards all the parents were eating cakes and drinking coffee. Charley was quite happy to let his brother Boot take all the limelight, and he was happy to sniff around. I don’t think his tail stopped wagging all day.
I met Charley again in April 2018. We were at the Beagle World Record Attempt for the biggest single breed dog walk, held at Macclesfield near Manchester. We greeted each other like it was only yesterday, he was the same happy beagle I remembered and we walked together having a great day all the while. We parted company with a brilliant friendship intact between us Beagle brothers.
Charley had a wonderful holiday to the Scottish Islands this year and the pictures sent back showed that he was enjoying his life and adventures and showed no signs of slowing up. Live every day, and live it properly seemed to be his motto.
To wake up this morning to the horrible saddening news that Charley had taken the longest journey last evening just knocked the stuffing out of me. That he didn’t seem to suffer and “went to sleep” gives me some comfort in my heart. The pain in my heart is for his parents and his brother, Boot. He leaves a huge hole in their collective hearts as he does with all who knew him, met him and laughed with him. I patrolled in your honour today Charley.
That he will be missed will never be doubted. That he will always be remembered fondly and and with a smile is equally undoubted. Charley Beagle I salute you as a good friend and funny beagle pal with a warm and generous presence. I salute you as a fur who enjoyed life to the full, who laughed and cried with the rest of us.
Enjoy the blackberries in the everlasting meadow, I’ve heard they are the biggest and juiciest ones. Rest easy mate. Until we meet again. Always farewell and never goodbye.