Apparently Mike didn’t take this trailhead sign too seriously. I was dragging my leash behind me and running after my purple-and-white ball pretty much all the way out the 1.8-mile Preston-Snoqualmie Trail last weekend, and most of the way back. My buddy Tara was with us, and Heather kept her on a rope tied around her waist the whole way, because Tara was limping a little. That rope turned out to be a good thing, because on the way back a black bear crossed the trail about 100 feet in front of us. Forget the ball–I had something much more exciting to chase. I sprinted after it, first along the trail and then following it into the woods on the downhill side, barking like mad.
Luckily, he was just a youngster, not all that big (although to me he looked like a grizzly), and he wasn’t brave enough to hang around and see how huge and fierce his predator would be. I’m pretty sure he was scared enough to climb the first tree he saw, although he may have just slithered down into the underbrush of the deep ravine that the trail crosses on what was once a railroad bed.
Mike and Heather seemed as impressed by my spunk as I was. At least, I didn’t get scolded. Heather was just happy no other humans were around to hear her screaming, “Chloë, Treat Party!” over and over and over, to no avail. Without any bear fillets in my mouth, I finally returned to her on my own–and, as usual, as soon as I damn well pleased.
Tara was awed so much that she didn’t even growl at me in the back of the station wagon on the way back, and later she kept away from me when we went to a party at her house (my Getaway). I got to strut my stuff around the all the guests, the behavior star among the dogs that were there.
The party honored the recent U.S. citizenship of my friend Manuel Garcia, who trains horses and young riders out at the Getaway. Manuel comes from Mexico, but now he’s an official Washingtonian, just like me. After a wonderful dinner (Mike and Heather had pork ribs, I had extra kibble, ground turkey, vegetables and yogurt topped with Mike’s Secret Sauce), Manuel brought out his horse Blue, who I remembered from our initial meeting last year, when I was but a tiny puppy. These days Blue and I are both older and wiser, and, just like me, Blue can really dance. In fact, after seeing him perform several numbers at the party, I am forced to admit that Blue dances a lot better than I do, and he’s got more moves. The poor guy’s not even getting treats every time he dances. He needs a better agent, I’d say.