Friday, September 16, 2005
Do you want to go for a RIDE!?
I hate to admit it, but I love four letter words. In that regard I’ve been a bad influence on Mrs. Author. Every day occurrences like stubbed toes, rain, or a trip to the mudstream cause eruptions of obscenities that make our home sound like a truckstop. The dogs seem no worse for the wear.
There is one four letter word in particular that can immediately cause a dog’s brain to short-circuit. Ride. It seems innocent enough. We humans may use it freely among ourselves with little or no cause for concern. But accidentally use that word in conversation around Nigel & Sola and the world as you know it will change before your eyes. Tables are overturned, claws rip at the carpeting, the cat flattens itself in a corner. Sola leaps with joy, easily rising to the level of my face. Nigel pops wheelies and screams like a schoolgirl who’s just discovered a snake in her lunchbox.
I firmly believe that when I speak the magic word, car keys in hand, I am transformed. The dogs suddenly see me as a gigantic peanut butter covered hotdog with squirrels running all over me juggling tennis balls. They cannot help but go completely and utterly bonkers.
To a dog, ride is the great word of promise. For Nigel & Sola it might mean a run in the dog park, a walk on Church Street, or maybe a trip to Al’s for a little scoop of ice cream. Walks along the shores of Lake Champlain soothe them. They are very much aware that the car is the key to all of these experiences.
Each and every weekend the word is spoken. We drive, walk, visit, experience. We eat together, crank music with the windows down, and Sola barks at each passing car with a canine occupant on board. New smells, new people, new dogs, new places abound. We take all of this in together, as a family. And we’re all better for it.
Nigel: I do not scream like a schoolgirl.
Sola: Who cares Nigel, help me catch those squirrels!
Cat: I hate that word…