As a young girl growing up in the Maritimes we were surrounded by animals, most of which we called our pets. Whether it was my Dad’s retrievers for duck hunting, our many mouse-chasing cats, our assortment of rabbits or the fleet of ducks and birds we wanted to save, we loved our furry friends. In many cases our pets seemed nothing short of angels in disguise. Whenever we came home we knew that we’d always be enthusiastically greeted, whether we were gone for a few minutes or hours.
Pets give us so much: the unconditional love, companionship, the wet noses and warm snuggles. My family rescued, now almost 16 years ago, a husky lab cross from Kuper Island who we call “Kuper” and a Siamese cat from the Saanich Peninsula we named “Bubbles.” They have become an integral part of our lives and they remind us – or perhaps just stare at us to say – “seize the day, every day”.
In this issue of Seaside you’ll discover that animals connect many of the stories, like uncovering just how precious raising Alpaca can be with a local farm, Inca Dinca Do, where their production crew turns fleece into yarn. And we take a Behind the Scenes look at beekeeping as owner Lindsay and Jason transfer a shipment of New Zealand bees into empty hives … and yes bees are animals too!
Our cover features a lovely lamb from Newton Valley Farm. Now this sweet little thing will put a smile on anyone’s face! You’ll see through the stories and pictures that whether you’re at the home or office, our pets prove friendship and loyalty with no bounds can brighten even the dullest days. Animals may not be considered human, but they have huge hearts. Unconditional love, loyalty, courage, perseverance: all great qualities. Ironically, our pets teach us priceless lessons about human values, suggesting that they might be inherent in all living species.
So while we remember to smile each day, don’t forget to give your closest companion (or someone else’s) a hug today. And, enjoy some of the stories and pictures of our community in this jam-packed, 96-page issue!
P.S. To all you moms: Happy Mother’s Day!