After the great weekend I just had, I’m officially forgiving Mike and Heather for deserting me on my birthday. They took me to Port Townsend on the Olympic Peninsula for two nights and three days to celebrate all of our February birthdays and anniversaries, with two ferry rides, three long hikes and even a little danger along the way.
Staying two nights at the Bishop Hotel was my favorite part. We had two rooms all to ourselves, plus our own huge bathroom. I had to stay off the furniture, of course, but I had my orange blankey and my traveling crate, so I was happy. Heather napped with me on the floor, and every time we waltzed through the lobby the person behind the high desk in front made a big fuss over me and gave me treats. That’s the kind of service I deserve, so I rate this hotel 4 paws all the way.
The ferry rides were neat, too, although the howling wind and white caps on Puget Sound Saturday morning were a bit intense. Heather’s lap was better than being outside. But the trip back from Kingston on Monday afternoon was much more pleasant, since we had calmer waters and we were in the stern of the ship. All in all, I’m looking forward to many more sailings.
Hiking was even better. The beaches were a little scary, especially at Point No Point Lighthouse, where the north wind pushed those waves pretty hard. Big surf is not my cup of tea. I really liked the hike up the Big Quilcene River, with snow underfoot but sunshine streaming through the tall trees. We had to cross some neat wooden bridges and ford several small streams.
Dodging waves and leaping across boulders were nothing compared to our hike around Fort Worden’s Artillery Hill, where huge guns once guarded the entrance to Puget Sound. On a woodsy trail between the batteries, a large animal crossed about 50 feet in front of us, and instantly I took off in hot pursuit. Heather thought it was a coyote or a fox, because of its bushy tail. Mike thought it was much too big to be a fox and too furry to be a coyote, so he had no idea what it was; to him it looked like a maned jackal. Me? I was running too fast after it to have an opinion. In seconds I was at the spot where it disappeared into the woods, and I was eagerly eyeing the animal’s path until I heard Heather’s call: “Chloë! Treat Party! Treat Party!” Aha! Remembering once again that old “one in the hand is worth two in the bush” theory, I turned and raced right past the fast-closing Mike to where Heather had strewn small pieces of salmon jerky on the ground. All for me.
Yes, I came back, and later on, I was glad of it. A volunteer working in the park office told Heather the animal was definitely a coyote. It seems that among the Fort Worden State Park inhabitants are a few of the biggest, bushiest coyotes anyone has ever seen, no doubt attracted and fattened up by all the deer that are overrunning the Quimper Peninsula. (I saw several deer myself, in fact, but frankly they didn’t do much for me. At this stage, at least, I prefer rabbits, squirrels and mice.)
Now, I’m not sure if I’m buying those stories about these huge coyotes eating small dogs, but I’m more than happy that I didn’t get the chance to find out. I don’t want to miss out on any future birthday/anniversary weekends if they’re as good as this one.
Needless to say, the trip took a lot out of me. I missed a lot of rack time. After we got back, I had to sleep it off in Mike and Heather’s bed for at least an hour or two before I rousted Foxy and Moosey from the living room for a rousing game of tug and then knocking my whiffle ball around the living room.