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  • Writer's pictureMarybeth Haines

Connections In The Fall

I think I think too much in the Fall or perhaps I just go deeper into myself. Summer time is play time and I remember climbing trees as a kid in the summer and then later watching the leaves on that same tree change colours in the Fall.

My dad used to talk about how the earth gets ready for sleep in the Fall and how everyone needs sleep to recharge. I think about connections in the Fall, with friends, with family at Thanksgiving and with the earth. If I whirl through my life so fast and stop the connecting, I don’t seem to stay grounded. The walk outside today made me realize how important it is for me to stay balanced.

I had a great opportunity to speak about my book at Thistledown Pet Memorial’s annual event called Paws To Love. Folks from all over brought their pets to the event and as I was speaking a dog would pass by with a glance at me, or I would see Ozzy the Alpaca gazing across the property. Now one thing about Alpacas is that they are amazing to watch and connect with. Ozzy and Sammy the Alpacas are exactly what a speaker needs to chill out before a talk.

Marybeth with Sammy & Ozzy the Alpacas

Two RCMP police horses and their respective Officers greeted me (“Honest Ed” (Eddy) and “Tecumseh”) while pets and their families wandered the 50 acres of beautiful trails on site. The forest is open to all of Thistledown’s clients.

Thistledown Pet Memorial cares for pets that have passed on with dignity and respect and this event Paws to Love raises money for the Uxbridge/Scugog Animal Shelter to help injured animals that need homes.

Being at this event reminded me that the passing of my beloved cat “Kitty” was why I wrote my book and why I was there at this event as one of the guest speakers. Kitty is the inspiration behind The Power of Pets and my own grief was soothed through the writing of this book. Today I’m so proud of what can be achieved when you get inspired.

Photo credit: Joanne Ingrassia, Toronto

Now, I spoke about gifts that pets give us. Kitty gave us the gift of laughter. The one thing about my cat was that he talked. Yes, sometimes he sounded like an old man and other times he sounded like a boy from another world but the sounds that came from my cat surprised and amused us especially when, near the end of his life, he started speaking with an English accent! An English accent! My husband Troy and I would wake up laughing our heads off as Kitty would go into his talking!

We had a tenant who you definitely wouldn’t think to mess with. He was tall and strong and a man of few words. When he moved in I warned him that our cat Kitty would sometimes actually talk. He looked at me like I had six heads. His apartment was in the basement where Kitty’s litter box was.

One night Kitty’s vocal ‘hello’ was very loud and as Kitty stepped closer down to his litter box, down each step towards the basement where my tenant was laying in bed, Kitty’s voice got louder and louder. The next morning I was greeted with a very convinced tenant who said he was absolutely terrified the night before.

He explained everything in detail as I am explaining the story to you. Let’s just say that this tenant didn’t stay for long. Even if you know it’s just a cat, somehow, in the middle of sleep, my cat’s noises could send a grown man running up the stairs for safety.


Laughter! After Kitty ate his organic chicken chops that were freeze dried and dusty he would look up with a powdered beard. The more we would laugh, the more he would look around the room with his white beard as if he was just trying to make us laugh.

I’m happy when I think of Kitty. I’m happy when I do speaking engagements and I’m happy to meet other people who feel the same way I do.

Pets are gifts. Pets are hilarious and as I write this I smile. This event helped me connect back to why I wrote this book in the first place. So with that thought, enjoy your time connecting with your loved ones this Fall.

Fall doesn’t have the same allure as the magic of summer but it does have something very healthy about it. Pausing to reflect does a body good and then soon enough it’s summer time again which reminds me, it’s time to set my clock back 1 hour but then again… who needs an alarm clock when you have a pet?

Love and hugs,


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