You humans know nothing about the next world. Sometimes you do get close. One way is how you dress up corpses for a funeral like they will be wearing that outfit when they cross the Bridge. They do wear clothes, but it is what they wore when they passed. It is for the best. No one wants many naked humans walking around, mainly because, at the time of passing over, humans look they're worse.
Clothes are not the only item that comes with the new angel. If they are wearing jewelry, it comes with them too. It is true with dogs as well. All collars, harnesses, or outfits transfer to the new world too.
Casey spent his time on the mortal side hiking through the woods, hills, and valleys surrounding his home. The yellow labrador was a terrific sporting dog and loved every minute of life. If the cosmos were fair, he would have got 30 years to be with his dad. But, it was only 12 when he got cancer and had to join us.
In his last moments, the pup’s dad slipped his tracker onto Casey’s ankle, kissed him, and said that this way, he would always know where his boy was. He had no idea how right he was.
Casey visited his dad in his dreams to help him with his grieving. When he wasn’t there, he walked the same ground he had as a mortal.
One evening, Mitchell, Casey’s dad, got hit with a rogue wave of grief and decided, one more time, to check Casey’s tracking device. What he saw shocked him. It showed he was on one of the old trails.
Mitchell tried to think of the logical reasons why Casey’s tracker was active, but there was only one. His little friend’s spirit was revisiting all their favorite places.
Every night Mitchell checked the tracker, but it was not visible. He was beginning to think it was a strange anomaly until, a month later, he saw the tracker again, moving on a trail a half-mile from his house. He switched the app to his phone, grabbed his coat, and ran to the spot.
Mitchell got to the place where the tracker projected Casey was, but he could not see him. He was about to go home when he noticed a dog just out of the corner of his eye. He slowly turned, making sure he did not lose the image. He got it centered and saw his beloved boy, younger than when he last saw him, brighter and more alive than he ever had been. He reached with a shaking hand to Casey and stroked his soft fur.
Mitchell was able to see Casey because the sight of the tracker on his computer opened him to believe in the unmanageable, that Casey had returned as a ghost and was still exploring property behind his house. That is why he knew that Casey hadn’t been wrongly diagnosed or climbed out of the grave but that he was a ghost, who Mitchell could see, as long as he believed.
Mitchell walked to a tent he had kept on the trail, with Casey following behind him. They went inside, and Casey took a treat from him. Then they laid down next to each other, and Mitchell stroked the fur he so loved, and in Casey’s eyes, he saw it all, his past, and all that lay before him. He closed his eyes and fell asleep while still petting Casey.
Mitchel woke up alone. There was no sadness. He was grateful for getting what every parent wished for, just one more day with their dog. And, he knew, if the stars aligned, the moon was holding water, he would see the blip on the screen and revisit his friend. Someday, he would have a son, who would join him, and learn how miraculous the all world really was. He knew that because he saw it in Casey’s eye, the place where all answers could be found.