HONOLULU (KHON) – Losing a pet can be a painful process for anyone, and the grief is different for every owner. A UK woman does everything she can to honor her hamster, Spud, by scattering his ashes in his favorite spot.
The trip to Hawaii – around 7,000 miles from home – was to be both their first time and their last adventure together.
Lisa Murray-Lang, 46, got Spud about six months before the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown in March 2020.
“So we were stuck at home. Frightened! My job as a freelance pet sitter has been discontinued! I was really worried and scared!” Murray-Lang explained. “One day I let my hamster out in his exercise ball. After a while I couldn’t hear him anymore.”
She realized that Spud had taken the lid off and escaped. Panicking, she called out to her hamster, “Spud, come out! I don’t have time…” Before she knew it, she did.
“None of us knew how long this thing was going to last!” said Murray-Lang. “So then I realized he’s been locked up his whole life, especially living with four rescue cats!”
Murray-Lang decided at this point to create adventures for Spud, making cardboard versions of famous locations with a twist, such as London’s Buckingham Palace to see the Queen, Hamwarts, New York wizarding school to see his friend Stuart Little , and other fun places.
“He was having fun and my mind was busy! He saved my sanity! He gave me a reason to get up and never give in or give up! I owe him my life!” said Murray-Lang.
Spud’s favorite place “to visit” was Hamwaii (Hawaii) with sand and sun. Murray-Lang added that during that time they were covered in so much snow that it was depressing. Researching Hawaii to build this cardboard version helped cheer her up.
Spud died in March aged 3 years and 5 months. According to Murray-Lang, this equates to about 138 in human years. On the occasion of his death, she decided to travel to Hawaii to scatter his ashes at his favorite spot. After a long journey from Birmingham to Amsterdam to Los Angeles to Honolulu, Murray-Lang and Spud have finally made it.
“So far the people here have been amazing!” said Murray-Lang.
She is currently in Waikiki and plans to stay for two weeks. At this point, she hasn’t scattered his ashes, but when she does, she wants to keep something for herself to put in a chain of urns. That way he will be with her wherever she goes.
“Spud really came to my rescue when I was going through the dreadful time of COVID-19,” said Murray-Lang. “He might only have been small, but he had such a big impact on my life.”