Friday, July 1, 2011

Travel with Dog

Google advised us that the trip between Sacramento and Ferndale would be 865 miles.  When one gets close to 865 miles, it becomes more and more important that Google be correct.  It wasn’t.  We left home at about 8 a.m. and arrived in Ferndale at around midnight.  It was a long day of driving—made all the longer because of the extra stops we made for Milo.  If only dogs could talk. . .  “I’m thirsty.”  Or “I have to pee.”  It’d make those stops so much easier.  We played this endless guessing game to determine which function of his body needed attention.  Fortunately, we weren’t betting money on our record of accuracy as we would have lost a fortune and Milo would have won.  He won anyway.

Mount Shasta

While some may disagree, the trip between central California and northwestern Washington offers one spectacular view after another.  Up the central valley of California, passing one rice paddy after another—many replete with egrets standing starkly white against the green.  Fields of golden sheaves of some kind of grain, which my husband always claims is rape—no matter what it looks like.  The Sutter Buttes in the distance looking all purpley.  The Cascade mountains all the way up.  As we approached the border with Oregon, Mt. Shasta loomed for miles and miles.  At one vista point, I pulled over to take a picture.  This stop would hold about ten cars bumper to bumper and was separated from the freeway by a chain link fence.  As I got out, I left the door open and Milo jumped out.  Now as it happens we start doggie training next week, and Milo’s recall instinct is not well developed.  So I ran around the place like an ant whose hill has just been disturbed trying to prevent Milo from heading toward the freeway while he—who was moving aimlessly--looked longingly, if frantically, in the direction of those noisy semi trucks zooming along the freeway just ripe for the chasing.  Phil, in the meantime, thoughtfully opened the trunk and shook the bag of treats.  Milo bought the distraction, and we collapsed back in the car unable to speak for a good five minutes.  No photo captured that particular memory. 

View from house in Ferndale
Great blue heron

Kayaking on the bay
At the end of any journey—made by choice, of course—is something good.  And good it was.  In the morning, we awoke to the sea and the birds and the forest and good friends.  So began our week in the northwest.  We ate, we drank, we walked, we kayaked, we worked together, and I was, once again, awestruck by the majesty of it all.  My photos do not do justice to it.  But trust me, it was good.

Somehow the 865 plus miles home were somewhat easier.  We left at 5 a.m. instead of 8 and arrived home by about 10.  Manageable and memorable. 

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