FRIENDSHIPS FORGED THROUGH FOUR-LEGGED FRIEND
Mary-Ann Boys and Judy Versalko first met the day Judy moved into Greenwich Gardens, when she and a team of furniture movers were trying to manoeuvre a new couch into her apartment.
Although the couch eventually went back to the shop, the chance hallway meeting with neighbour Mary-Ann proved far more fruitful.
Both women quickly realised they shared a common bond – Mary-Ann’s beloved West Highland Terrier Danny, and Judy’s rescue Bichon Rosie, a picture of cuteness, all the way down to her pink pearl collar.
Having a pet introduces you to people, it opens up a whole new social life,” says Mary-Ann.
Soon the pair became dog walking buddies, and before long they’d befriended four other Greenwich Gardens residents – Alfie the Poochon and his mum Beverley Kelly, and Ann Fitzgerald and her beloved Bertie.
Now we have coffees together in the morning, wines in the evening, and also catch up for dinners together. We’ve created a really close friendship.”
Known by many of the village residents as “the dog ladies”, the four women couldn’t be happier.
“We’ve got a lovely little routine going,” says Beverley. “There are lots of different parks nearby to walk the dogs, or we can jump in the car and take them to the beach at Mairangi Bay.”
Adds Ann, “It’s wonderful companionship. We solve all sorts of problems together and it’s very supportive , not just for us but for the dogs too.”
They also share a lot of laughs.
We’re a little bit naughty,” admits Judy. “We’re always the noisy table in the café!”
Bonding over their four-legged friends has opened up a whole new dimension of life at Greenwich Gardens.
“We are all on our own and we’ve gravitated together because of the dogs,” explains Judy, who moved to the village from West Auckland to be closer to her daughter.
“It’s the best thing, I’m really happy here. I’ve met some lovely people – and some lovely dogs too.”