Our family has a new beginning, Opal. We just lost our dearest companion of 16 years, Ruby, on December 26th, 2013. 2012 at Thanksgiving we lost our beloved Perl. I truly believe Opal was sent to us by Ruby and Perl. She looks so much like Perl it is weird, like I am seeing things. Her eyes are different and she hisses at the dogs, but she is a love bug and so very sweet to us humans. I miss both Perl and Ruby very much. They will never be able to be replaced. I still look for Ruby during feeding and bedtime then I get that sinking feeling…”Oh, yeah”. I hope she is having a great new beginning wherever she is. 16 years is a long time. I believe Perl was 16 or 17, but she was only with us for several years, as her owner had to go to a nursing home. Ruby followed me everywhere. She’d even wake from a sound sleep to make sure I was still where she left me. It will be fun to learn the nuances of our new Opal. She was meant to be, literally brought to our home the day before yesterday, a week to the day after Ruby’s death.