A couple of weeks ago my neighbor's dog passed away. Taro-kun was about 15 years old and for the past few months has been doddering along. Taro-kun and Choco were "sometime friends" and could sniff at each other without having a confrontation. When Taro-kun was younger, he would occasionally slip his collar and I would spot him in the rice field and bring him home. (And Mrs. Sumi has done the same for me when Choco escaped!)
Every morning, Mrs. Sumi would take Taro-kun for a walk (sometimes along with another of her many dogs) and Choco would make a lot of noise and let me know they were passing the house. I always had a supply of dog biscuits for Taro-kun and Mrs. Sumi and I would stand by the forest talking about our concerns for our animals.
In December Mrs. Sumi and I both knew that the next few weeks would be hard, but I was able to give Taro-kun a dog biscuit when Mrs. Sumi carried him home from a walk the day before he passed away. And I was able to offer my shoulder to a sobbing Mrs. Sumi early in the morning the next day before the rest of her family was awake.
Taro-kun stood guard at the corner of our neighborhood and I will miss seeing him sitting under his own personal cherry blossom tree...
Last May I happened to snap a picture of Mrs. Sumi and Taro-kun in front of my house coming home from a walk. This week I decided to try and portray their morning routine in fabric and this is what I came up with. I hope Mrs. Sumi will be comforted. She is a good friend and Taro-kun was a special friend to me too.