We have had a hard time this past week with many of obstacles on our world course. First it was us getting to the border between Zambia and Namibia called Wenela, where our casual stroll over the border ended up with me being refused to enter Namibia. The day we sorted this problem we got bad news from Slovenia; our little beloved old Bertdog (Herbie) is in great pain. On top of that SA high commission in Windhoek threw another obstacle into our face. The staff member decided that she does not want to work too hard that week and said I should go back to Vienna to get my SA visa. That she won’t accept my application and I should just fly back half way across the world. As per her the reason was that I do not work in Namibia nor I am Namibian. A strange policy for a consular office abroad which job is exactly that: accepting applications for tourist visas. Her not wanting to do the job that is in her job description amazed even SA home affairs officer over the phone. Of course they will receive my complaint regarding this situation.
But there was nothing else to do, than to go to Vienna to sort that out. In a way we were planning to go to see Herbie in very near future departing from Cape Town. But now we would not have enough time as we got pushed back by SA high commission. We knew it is 5 days waiting time once I file my application, so instead of us spending money in Vienna we decided to go to Slovenia for few days. It did not hurt to save money on accommodation, see my family and our Herbie. It was hard being back in Slovenia as we knew why we are there. Our days were filled with phone calls and visits to the vet, trying to change Herbie’s pain pills and spending a lot of time just being with him. We knew we will have to say goodbye, and at one point we thought we can get away with not making this hard decision and try different pills. As this proved to be worse for him, we had to do this step.
It was probably the hardest thing we ever did, but his life did not have many good days. He was holding on for us, although in so much pain. We had to let him go as on his bad days he could not stand or sit, he had to be handfed and all that was so painful to watch. So we had to give our vet the last call and he came in the evening to release him from this pain. We spent every second together as a family, Tan, Herbie and I, cuddling on a bed until he fell asleep and quite some time after the vet left.
We lost a big part of us and it hurts us so much, that we left for SA unexcited and very depressed. We did not want to be in SA at all, and as a result we disliked it. Our personal experience was not good, and on top of that we got scammed on a day we felt the most depressed about loss of Herbie.
He was a great dog, who lived on two continents and in three countries. He was in Tan’s life for almost 17 years and was sometimes acting more like a person. He taught himself to go into the shower if he really had to go to pee when we were at work. Herbie showed us his anger by knocking shampoo bottles on the floor or having verbal arguments. He loved people, not so much other dogs and travelled to 6 countries in his life; always with us weather on a plane, train or a hotel. I could keep writing about his happy times, but then you would be reading this post for weeks, so I will stop right here. We miss him and love to think he can now run around without pain.