Puppies, Friends and Bliss

This last autumn, I received a surprise package from my dear friend, Noriko. When I opened it, my breath was taken away by a gorgeous portrait of my dog, Hawk. Our family of golden retrievers are fairly long lived. We routinely see them age 14-16 years, so we were stunned when Hawk suddenly died in June of 2012 at the young age of 6. Hawk was littermate to Noriko’s Sakurako. Saku, lived with us for 11 months before she was able to go home to Japan.

Prior to and while Saku was growing up at our home, we were blessed with the friendship of Noriko and Yoshinori. This friendship has continued over the years.

We had an inkling that Noriko was artistically talented, but in her modesty, she did not let on. When I see the way she captured the spirit of Hawk, it is as if a part of Noriko’s beauty and grace reflects back in her creation. I see her in every stroke.

This beautiful gift is on display at my art table as a reminder of the gift of friendship spanning miles and time. Simply bliss.

Golden retriever protrait

RedTail’s Wind Walker “Hawk” – by Noriko Akiyama, posted with permission.

Hawk and Saku with Noriko and Mary

Hawk and Saku with Noriko and Mary – 2006

Noriko, Sakurako, Mary & Hawk

Noriko, Sakurako, Mary & Hawk – December 2006

Noriko and Yoshi with the pack.

Noriko and Yoshi with the pack.   July 2010

People: Noriko, Yoshinori, Mary, Tim Goldens: Jutaro, Hawk, Blitz, Tessa, Tom, Nellie

2011 – People: Noriko, Yoshinori, Mary, Tim
Goldens: Jutaro, Hawk, Blitz, Tessa, Tom, Nellie, and Teka

33 thoughts on “Puppies, Friends and Bliss

  1. Mary.Thank you so much for your gorgeous comment for my drawing in your blog. I can hardly express my feeling in English aftet reading it. And l am very happy to have met you &Tim in this earth. You gave us much happieness through Sakurako. You always assist us to get gorgeous, beautiful, and smart goldens which are our treasure in our life. The technique for training dogs as gundogs which you taught us help us a lot and our friends. .
    Thank you (^_^)/Mary & Tim and God for our friendship!

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    • – You are too kind, Noriko. I have enjoyed seeing your pet portraits, you are so talented and accomplished. I wish for the world to appreciate your beautiful art and know the kindness of your heart. I must also blog about the life of bliss your goldens get to enjoy. I think a lot of people do not know retrievers get to work as gundogs in Japan. Sakurako, Jutaro, and Miniko are very fortunate retrievers to have you.

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  2. Wonderful story Mary and what a great gift to receive from Noriko that you will treasure forever. Brought a tear to my eye again as I still miss that boy and feel very fortunate that I have little Bella who looks just like her daddy. Nice photographs of all of you!

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  3. Two things in common: goldens, my favourite pick if ever I get a dog, and a long-time friendship with two Japanese girls who stayed with me at different times 25+ years ago – and still in touch today! A lovely post. I was very touched by it.

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  4. Pingback: Whimsday Bliss – Noriko | The Backdoor Artist

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