The bonus? It was back where I was born. In fact, we even stayed in a room that looked just like the one I first met Joy in, back in training (if I weren’t at the top of my game, I would have been nervous she was exchanging me! But nope, she needs me too much. Yep, I’m THAT good….)
Anywho, I settled right back into our room and even humored Joy by doing my business on the cement like old times.
Right before the whole stage thing, Joy took me to this fancy lunch. Not only did it smell good under those tables, but there were tons of other dogs— some with harnesses like mine and other small dogs with vests like I used to wear. They were SOOOOO cute! All I wanted to do was play with them, but Joy was being quite the killjoy and kept trying to get me to just sit there. I mean, it was one thing when we were up on that big stage (I stayed right at the very furthest edge of the stage, just to keep my old pal from training, Mick on his toes, as he was emceeing the whole thing. Mick, buddy, I know you’d stage dive for me if I started to fall…you’re the only one who can pronounce my name with the proper dramatic roll of the “r”….), but quite another thing when the little puppies are right next to us!
After the speech, people clapped a lot. Even though Joy was the one speaking, I knew the applause were for her furry sidekick. Then Joy talked and talked and talked with a bunch of people while I tried to get some puppy play time in whenever she was too distracted to do anything about it.
After everyone left, we walked around the city while a lady with a camera followed us around. She took us to this flower stand, and I thought surely Joy was buying me my very own bouquet, but as soon as I started to sniff (okay, fine and maybe a lil’ nibble. Can you blame a dog for tryin’?), Joy yanked the flowers away. That lady’s got some nerve.
Once we got on that plane home, I curled up and slept like one of those pups in a vest.
Back on the homefront in SoCal (oh, did I mention Joy’s other recent stunt? Moving me from my cozy new Chicago home with the large, yummy sticks and cold, fun snow all the way back to the area I played in with my 2 raisers growing up? Go figure!)
One thing about Joy is that she doesn’t really slow down, so it was right back to work after the big move, which meant more new routes for us. Parks, pools, classes, stores, libraries, art fairs, and even a church last week (some church where they sit and stand a lot…up, down, up ,down, up, down, and so on. Can you just stick with one, humans?)
This whole month has been strange. Joy takes me on more walks, and it’s warm like I remember, but there’s no yard to run around in anymore. There’s not tons of kids over after school either. I’m not even sure Joy’s kids even go to school anymore. They take a few classes but mostly do school stuff at home. Joy looks like she loves being with the girls so much, and they do a lot of neat things (today they made soap!) They run around with me in the middle of the day, which I love since Joy can be kind of boring when they’re not around. It’s like the kids make her more fun
We do this one “tug of war” circus show, in which Joy pulls one end of a long colored thing with rings while I pull the other. She hums circus music, and Ii really ham it up, growling and spinning and making everyone laugh
But when the girls are upstairs, I catch Joy crying a lot, which isn’t really like her, especially in the middle of the day. I try to make her feel better by staying close to her and giving her some of my famous Roja hugs. It makes me think that being human must be hard.
I’m glad I’m a dog. I eat and sleep and play and work and relax in the sun and try to enjoy each day. If Joy could just manage to be more like me, not thinking so much about yesterday or tomorrow, I think she’d have an easier time. But I can only do so much for her. After all, I do physically guide her al over Orange County (not to mention all over the country lately!) Some things she’ll just need to figure out on her own, and I think it may take some time.
Okay friends, Joy’s chattiness is obviously rubbing off on me, and I have some bones to chew. Adios!