Thursday, December 13, 2007

Little Gigabyte

Many tears and great heartache filled my days about a year ago. Perhaps my experience in this story was my wake up call. Hopefully, only these words will be yours. If you drive faster than the speed limit on city streets, drive while talking on your cell phone, drive while lighting a cigarette or putting on your make-up, or a million other things that can take your mental focus off the road, then this wake up call IS for you too.

My neighbors brought home a beautiful black lab puppy about two years ago. They named her Gigabyte and she was full of spunk and love. Gig was never shy when it came to receiving love. With her front paws, she would reach up the fence that separated our back yards making sure she was in perfect position to receive all the loving strokes and kisses I could give. With each loving pet and cuddle I gave her sweet little face, I could NEVER have known that I would be the one to clean her blood and brain tissue off the street and grass in front of my house.

Sadly, the wife of my neighbor came home from work late one afternoon and let Gig out in the back yard to use the grass. Unfortunately, the wife stepped inside the house for just a moment. In that small moment of time, something caught Gig's attention. She wandered around the side of the house to the front and eventually stepped onto the road where she was instantly hit by an SUV speeding down our street. The hit was extremely violent. Disgustingly, the driver did not stop to help Gig or to even express her remorse or sympathy. Witnesses ran to Gig and moved her to the grass. The hit was so violent she most likely died on impact.

At that time, I lived in a neighborhood with children and many, many pets. We were one block from the Yellowstone River in small town, Livingston, Montana. Many people walked or rode their bikes down our street with their dogs or their children.

I write this to remind all of us to PAY ATTENTION when we are driving. Slow down and pay attention. With my own dogs, I am extremely obsessive about responsible pet ownership, but many people allow their dogs to walk off a leash or be outside in an unfenced area without supervision. When a dog or cat follows a scent, a noise, or something else that catches their attention they are just following their natural instincts. It is not their fault they aren't being supervised and watched over or protected from drivers not paying attention and an accident happens.

WE can be protectors of these precious little ones though. Whether these little ones are precious pets or precious children, we can all be their protectors. I don't want anyone else to be the one to clean the street. And I most definitely don't want any of you to be the driver haunted by memories as I am sure the driver that hit Gig must be. Slow down and pay attention while driving.

Little Gig was so full of love and joy. I am blessed to have shared a part of her life.

~ Penny

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