Heaven’s BelowJune 11, 2021
Evans’ GateJune 12, 2021
t was W.R. Purche who first delivered the oft-quoted line, ‘Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong’.
Well, as wise as these words might be, that Purche eejit plainly never met Maximilian ‘Danger’ Byrne.
Because he was the best dog. Ever. Fact.
It was on Monday, June 7th that Max actually passed, and for the intervening days, keeping busy with Guide work so as not to have time to think about the fact that Max passed on Monday almost worked.
For the last 10 years – bar a stupid week-long holiday in stupid Finland – I have been with Max every single day. And every single one of those days was brighter and happier because of him.
Akin to Ghandi on ganja, Max was more god than dog, always calm, always centred – and always ready for happy. Which meant he was always happy, because his permanent Christmas Eve state of mind ignited joy all around him, with each new walk the best walk ever, and each second of each and every day potentially the moment that we might just head out that door once again.
And from Sharon Shannon to Joe Sweeney, from the gang down at the Greystones Nursing Home to all his fellow passengers that day he headed off on the Dart by himself, Max got on with everyone. Even Grace’s two psycho mutts from across the road.
Being able to head out around Greystones and have Max wait patiently outside, without a lead, as another top-of-the-range Guide interview got underway, was pretty remarkable too. Even if he did head off on the Dart alone that one time.
Like any loved dog, Max repaid that love a thousand-fold. And it was unconditional love.
Well, on the one condition you weren’t one of those assholes who didn’t know how to look after a dog. Like a driver’s license, people should really have to pass a test before being allowed to own one of our four-legged friends. Ditto your wedding license.
Bottom line, life is going to have a big Max-shaped hole in it from this moment on.
And as much as getting another dog, and loving them just as much, will undoubtedly be wonderful, Max is Elvis, The Beatles, Bowie and Chewbacca all rolled into one. There will never be another dog like him.
And in his memory, from now on, just like Max, we’re going to ignore the barking. And simply not bark back. Which is about the only sensible way to approach life. Especially the social media part.
In the meantime, as the old saying goes, let’s all try and be the person our dogs think we are.