Bouncy Bernese wins the hearts of children in local author’s book
Part-time Cordillera resident Linda Petrie Bunch nicknamed her rambunctious Bernese mountain dogs, Hannah and Lucy, “Hannibal and Lucifer.” The darling puppies can be naughty, thus the nicknames, but more than that, “they are wonderful and devoted friends, smart and easy to train and they love people,” Bunch said.That’s why Bunch has had four “Berners” over the past 20 years. The Denver-based author and photographer loves the breed so much she was inspired to write her first children’s book, called “A Snow Day For Hannah.””The puppies are adorable, like a panda bear, making for great photos for this book,” Bunch said. “And you wouldn’t believe it – people run to these dogs on the street to pet them and take photos. People just love them.”A portion of the proceeds from the book, Bunch’s first, benefits the Boys & Girls Club, a charity that is close to Bunch’s heart. “It’s a fabulous national organization that provides so many life-changing opportunities for children. It’s a great joy to find ways to support an organization that I believe in through the creative process.”Bunch took the time to answer a few questions for the Vail Daily.Vail Daily: What inspired this book?Linda Petrie Bunch: I’ve been a photographer all of my life and when Hannah joined our family, she was so adorable that I took hundreds of photos of her. The story that came out through the photos popped right out at me. Although I’ve never had kids, I have three grandchildren and I love to read to them and watch them light up during a story. They’ve taught me a lot about what is interesting to children in books. Initially I created the story for them, but then it turned into more when people responded well to the prototype of the book. This book and the experience of reading to kids at the Boys & Girls Clubs has provided a way for me to impact kids in a way I didn’t think possible. VD: Tell us a little bit about Hannah and Lucy.LB: We spend a lot of time up in Cordillera and love the beautiful views and the hikes, but I think our dogs love it even more. Bernese Mountain Dogs are natural in the snow. Hannah and Lucy are real characters. They like to run, wrestle and spar a lot and my husband Jim and I often refer to them as Hannibal and Lucifer. But they really are sweethearts, love kids and they are a joy to have in the family. They produce lots of entertaining adventures, some of which you can read about on Hannah’s Dog Blog (http://mountaindogbooks.blogspot.com/). VD: What do children most often ask you after they read the book?LB: During the readings they want to know if Hannah can really make snow men and snow angels and go sledding. They want to pet her and hug her a lot. They like to finish the rhymes in the book. They love to pet the dog; and Hannah, of course, loves the attention and kids.