On October the 13th Moonpie and I headed to the Blackwater and camped upriver from Joyners Br. It was a great three day trip with us catching plenty of fish, picking up plenty of trash and us having our usual great trip.
That all came to an end that third morning as I was packing up camp. Moonpie and I did our regular meet and greet that morning at the tent. She was acting as normal as Moonpie can act and I saw nothing wrong. I continued rolling up the tent and watched her walk behind a bush and vanish. We looked for her everyday but saw not the first trace. Freezing Deer even came out and we stayed a third night out, but no Moonpie. Then on the 18th, three days after she disapeared, I took a team to the camp site which included my dad and a best friend and we looked through some of the toughest terrain out there. Again we found nothing. With rain threatening we decided to try one more walk through right at the camp site. Again we searched and searched. On the return trip back towards the camp my dad decided because his hip was hurting so bad, to take an easier route and walk beside the river back to camp. Upon going down a slight embankment he stumbled upon a sleeping Moonpie. He told me he could not believe what he was seeing and ask God to please not be playing tricks on his eyes right now. I got the phone call that he had her, but was sure it was going to be a body recovery so I went and picked up the other search party members. Riding back downriver towards my dad I was pretty tight lipped and was just kinda numb thinking about what I was going to do when I saw my little doggy dead in my dads arms. We rounded a turn in the boat and saw my dad crouched on the shore. I figured she must be there dead in the water. As we drew nearer however, I saw a small grey faced little animal poke a head out of dads coat. I could not believe what I was witnessing and had a very hard time bringing the boat in to shore seeing through my watering eyes. I had never expected to see my little grey faced camping companion again, yet there she was, cold and hungry, but wagging her tail. We still do not know where she went or had been for those four days. She was found only 45 ft from camp, but I do not think she was there the whole time. Moonpie has the equivalent of Alzheimer’s, cannot hear and her eyesight is not to great either, but lots of prayers convinced the good Lord to bring her back to us that love her so much. I want to thank everybody that helped look and that prayed for her recovery, our prayers were answered. Moonpie is now at home and in retirement from Riverkeeper duties. She may go on some boat trips but will have a short leash on from now on to say the least. Needless to say we had a bit of a celebration the day we brought Moonpie home. Unfortunately I ended up with a broken leg that night and therefore will be out of Riverkeeper action for around 6 weeks. I apologize for all the Eco-Cruises and presentations I will have to cancel because of this. I hate that happened but if that is the cost of the pound of flesh for bringing Moonpie back, then I will certainly be okay with that because I know that one day I will be well and then Moonpie and I can once again get back on the two rivers we call the Blackwater and Nottoway.