An unexpected encounter with a woman on the bench in the jardin in 2003 changed my life for the better. Totally. Her name was Dogie. Yup, truly. When she was born in Punkin Corner near Quannah in West Texas, her Dad held her in one hand and said, "Look at that little dogie" and the rest is history. Her real name is irrelevant. No one ever called her that, ever. Dogie fit her perfectly!
Sitting on that bench that day, I was trying to gather the strength to drive to Houston and was not sure how long I would be there or when or if I would get back to San Miguel. My daughter was in MD Anderson battling leukemia and I was headed to be with her.
This stranger saw me sitting alone, facing the Parroquia. She came over sat down and took my hand and just sat there. I can hardly write this without wanting to cry. It was such a pure, kind, loving
gesture from a complete stranger. We sat that way for a while and then she introduced her gorgeous
self to me. She asked if I needed anything and I told her why I was sitting there. Eventually I left,
feeling better for the connection.
Fast forward several months when I saw Dogie again. We talked. And, she invited me to meet her somewhere for coffee. One thing led to another and a slow but sure friendship began. Little did Dogie know how much I needed a little nudge from someone. She was good at nudging.........believe me.
Then the coffee group was born with Dogie as the leader, the rest of us the followers. I think it was about 2006.If I remember correctly, there were three of us originally. Others stopped by and others were invited. Today it is usually ten or twelve or fourteen people who descend on Don Tomas on Monday mornings for coffee. The core of us are FAMILY - helping each other when there is a need.
It has been a lifeline for many of us from time to time. A true support system. Something that would not have happened if Mz. Dogie had not nudged us along.
There are so many crazy stories and we shared some of those yesterday with her daughters who are here since Dogie went to the Great Place in the Sky last Friday. We had tears and laughter and many hugs. I know she was grimacing and smiling from up there as we told these stories. All of which were true!
To say that she was a character would be an understatement. She was "one of a kind"and a True Texas Woman who did it all HER way in an absolute manner. I've never known anyone who liked "Bling" as much as Dogie. Well, maybe Gorgeous George, the wrestler.
Here are photos that show her effervescence, her love of life and her love of her family and her friends.
|Acting silly at coffee one Monday morning.|
Dogie. Of the many, many photos, not a bad one in the bunch.
|A photo of Dogie and two of her daughters, Betty and Becki.|
|And, two more daughters Buffy and Carrie along with husband Frank.|
up at 11AM in all the bling she could find to wear. Outrageous and wonderful!
I could not possibly post all the photos that I took over the years. All I can say is "Thanks for the memories Dogie and all your love. The world is a better place, in so many ways, for having had you here. Hope to see you again one of these days."