Our boy turns seven today. Seven years of love and snuggles and play and joy and laughter and smiles and exasperation and sweetness and tail wagging and pawing and cuddle-time and barks and bullies and deep soulful looks. Happy birthday little man, we love you so.
I wake up, suddenly. I feel like someone is staring at me. I turn over slowly and there he is, a small furry little fella with big brown eyes sitting over me looking down. His eyes say everything he can’t speak. I’m half awake and tell him no. Gently at first… no buddy, lay down, lay down now. He doesn’t take no for an answer and leans down and gives me a kiss on the cheek. Again I say, no buddy, lay down. He’s relentless. I try to go a bit more firm with him, NO, Weston, lay down. He ignores me. We’re having a battle of wills.
I tell him I didn’t get to sleep until really late last night and in fact have only slept for about four or five hours. He doesn’t seem to care. I change tactics. I ask if he needs to go outside. Maybe that’s it. I get up, he follows, and I think, OK, this is it. I open the doggie door and he sticks his head out, then pulls it back in. He sticks it out one more time, looks around, and again pulls it back in. I don’t have time for these shenanigans. I open the door, telling him it’s OK and that a little rain/freezing rain won’t hurt him and that I’ll stand right there in the door, in t-shirt and shorts, waiting for him. It’s freezing cold outside and I’m cold waiting in the doorway. He ventures out tentatively, makes it to the bottom of the steps, and immediately turns around and comes back in. I shake my head and pad back toward the bedroom. I need more sleep.
Of course, he follows me. I get back in bed and look down. He’s sitting on the floor next to the bed looking up at me, those big eyes doing their magic trick on me again. Practically programmed I scoot back, making room for him. I open up the covers and he jumps up effortlessly, laying down up against me with his head on my arm. He demands to be petted for a while, continually nudging me with his nose until I get just the right spot on his tummy. It’s nearly 8:00 AM now. I still want to go back to sleep.
We stay in that place for what seems like a long while, me petting his tummy, him enjoying what we have come to call his morning cuddle time. This is not the first time this scenario has happened. He’s trained me well.
Finally, finally, I hear him snore. This little sign tells me I can stop petting him and try to go to sleep. I do.
We both wake up. Him still up against me, head on my arm. I just spent over an hour spooning our boy. I vow, as I get up, and he gets up reluctantly, that this won’t happen again. It’s a vow I’ve made many times. His soul filled eyes melt my heart, even when I’m irritated by him. I remind myself he’s just a dog, but I love him so.
He jumps up on the sofa next to me, stares at me with those eyes, and paws my hand.
Today was a long day on the road. By choice we went an extra bit today so we could have a short day tomorrow. More time in Santa Fe when we get there. Because today was so long we didn’t do much stopping. Gas, food, rest stops, and just two extra little stops. One at the World’s Largest Fork in Springfield, MO and the other to photograph the Coleman Theater in Miami, OK where Don Hale used to go as a young gent.
Impressions from the day:
Great coffee this morning from Mudhouse Coffee in Springfield, MO. I regret not buying a t-shirt. There was great art on the walls… many black and white photographs of people in white who had mud on them. Loved it. Also a great dinner tonight from Tyler’s Barbeque in Amarillo, TX. The barbecue was Texas sized. Sadly I think we threw away nearly as much as we ate. Our room still smells of barbecue. I think it was the best barbecue I’ve ever had. All in all a very successful food and beverage day.
Today was a scorcher … the thermostat in the rig topped out at 106. It was so hot that when we stopped for our second cup of coffee in Oklahoma City the little girlie started hyperventilating and had to be carried back to the car. She is a tad bit of a drama queen, but it was also hot hot hot. A dry heat.
We are now fugitives in Oklahoma. A tip for anyone driving on the Oklahoma Turnpike… there are not always attendants at the toll plazas meaning you have to have exact change. We made it all the way to our last booth and then only had a $20. There was a change machine, but it only took $1 and $5. We looked at each other, saw the cars behind us lining up, looked at the red light which told us we couldn’t go unless we threw in the change we didn’t have, and we went on through anyway. As we did the alarms went off at the booth. I’m sure, if they took our photo as this happened, the people reviewing it will be cracking up. Our facial expressions were a combo of amusement, consternation, shock, horror, and guilt. Very funny. I think we were both gesturing…. arms up in the air as if to say… what are we supposed to do in this situation?
In two days we’ve seen two enormous crosses. One in Effingham, Illinois, and the other in some un-named little Texas town we passed. They were pretty much equal in size.
It rained on us today for awhile. It was nice and decently cool while it was raining. Then it got hot (see above).
We waved at Mangum, OK and Pryor, OK as we passed the exits with those names and then chatted about K’s childhood a bit. She spent a lot of time in Oklahoma as a kid and it’s always fun talking about that. Someday we need to do more than just drive through. I’d love to see where she was born and some of the places she’s told me stories about.
We started this morning at 10:00… after getting coffee and photographing the fork, which I know sounds late, and got to Amarillo at 7:30. Nine and a half hours on the road. Tomorrow we have a short day, only four hours of driving. Who knows what adventure we’ll find. I love road trips.
We went into Sisters one day for a couple of hours while we were over camping. It was a bit warm. Weston, who never drinks out of “other” bowls, drank. It was a first.
This particular shot was taken outside a great gallery in Sisters. We love this place and in fact have purchased stuff there in the past. Sisters is a cool little town, though now it’s a bit touristy. But who cares, it’s fun none the less.
Riley was, again, a pretty good girl with the crowds yesterday. She got a bit overwhelmed and had to be carried when we wandered around in the dense thick of it, but she didn’t bark very much and she was pretty brave. She’s taking a break in this one, waiting for her mums to finish up their slices of pizza so she can get back at it. Or, perhaps she’s saying… forget it, I’m done… take me to the car. Yeah… that might have been it.
This is Weston at Hondo Dog Park looking through the fence over to where the big dog area is. He might have been fancying himself as a big dog, but he’d never make it over there. He loves big dogs, but when he’s with them he spends most of his time laying down being submissive to them. He’s no fool.
Weston has been to Hondo a few times. Most of the time he’s sort of been like the little kid who is so shy they stand on the sidelines, waiting to be noticed or picked. We always sort of felt bad for him and tried to encourage him to get out there and play. This time, finally, he did that, even if it was just a little bit. He chased, he sniffed, he ran around with some of the other dogs. He didn’t do it tons, but he did it. Our little boy is growing up. Yeah, OK, he did still spend a lot of time jumping up into people’s laps. He’s like that. It’s how he rolls. He prefers the loves he can get from people more than the friendship he can get from fellow dogs. Ah well… lover, not fighter. We’re OK with that. And… so is he.
Took the kids to Hondo Dog Park yesterday after work. Perfect weather for it. It was Riley’s first time there. She did pretty well considering she can tend toward the anti-social. She never bites, or even tries to, but she sometimes likes to give a warning high pitched bark or five. Yesterday though… not bad. She didn’t do bad at all. I think there will be many more trips to Hondo in her future.
Ziggy is frequently called Mo. There’s a story behind this, which I won’t go into. Needless to say, these two pups are loved. Oh, and if you’re wondering about Ziggy’s breed. He’s a West Highland Terrier and Pug mix which makes him a Pesty. And… he’s all man. He is one macho little dude. Very sturdy, very strong, and surprisingly, very athletic. This little guy is fast.
This is, to his friends and family, Wicket. He is more formally known as Sir Wickersham or, if you really know him, Wiggles. He’s a schnoodle. Same as our pups. He is the elder statesman, being all of 4 now. He’s particular, stubborn, and very sheepy looking. Don’t let his cuteness fool you though… he’s a very good catcher of the ball.
Here’s the handsome Weston, or as I seem to refer to him lately, bud… or even more accurately, fuzzy. He gets his hair cut next week. He’s going to be happy about it I think. He’s been a little too hot during all our running around. He’s loved it, the running around that is, but it’s been a little too warm for him what with all his fuzziness.
Riley looks hilarious in this one. I took it yesterday, or maybe the day before, when I was running around the house snapping photos of the dogs. She gets all wiggly when you try to pet her. She’s so excited she just can’t stay still. It’s cute. Makes it hard to pet her, but you have to try… I mean come on, look at that face.
I know this isn’t exactly probably very politically correct, but I had to post a shot of how Weston spends much of his time while on walks. He’s a boy dog… boy dogs like to mark. There’s not a log, or tree, or rock he passes without having to leave his mark… so to speak. Even when he has no mark to leave he tries to leave it. It’s kind of funny. He thinks he’s a stud… and, well… he is.