I started whimpering as soon as Mike’s car got off I-90. Mike kept telling me to hold it in, thinking that I was whining because I really needed to pee badly. No, it was just my excitement; I knew I was getting back to the land of lawn, forest and wall-to-wall carpet: my country getaway.
And what could be as rare as four days in June? These were, in my view, perfect days, when I could play with (and sometimes destroy) Tara’s toys, play endless games of fetch on the grass, go on long walks with no leash on and collapse for tender naps in the sun.
But I’m earning my spurs out there, too. First I flushed a huge rabbit out of one of the side beds from underneath a drooping Japanese maple. I mean HUGE! This guy made Blackie and all his pals in Discovery Park look like mice. I almost caught him, too, but Heather’s screams of “treat party!!” sent me a pretty strong message, and I wisely decided to put on the brakes and hustle back for my bounty.
Probably a good thing, because the very next day during our walk in the state forest land out back, Heather and I saw a coyote cross the trail right in front of us. You better believe that Heather kept me on a short leash for a while after that. Mike, on the other hand, seemed unconcerned, no doubt convinced that the coyote we saw was about as real as the rhinoceros he said he saw.
The next frontier for me to conquer is the horse barn, which continues to scare me, but even here I made good progress. I wouldn’t go anywhere near that barn at first; after all, I could hear the loud noises inside, and I knew there must be big horses making them. Bigger than rabbits! Even when Mike, Heather and Tara all went inside the barn together and left me alone outside, I refused to cross the threshold, and Mike couldn’t drag or coax me inside. Finally, on our last day there, Heather picked me up and walked me through the center aisle all the way to the other end of the barn, and then I managed to slink back under my own power (although I was constantly praying that none of those horses would let go with a piercing neigh while I was inside). My prayers were answered. YES!
After my barn ordeal was over, Heather revealed that a cat lives in that barn, but it was hiding upstairs while I did my walk-through. I’m OK with that for now; this gives me something to look forward to for next time, when I’ll no doubt strut inside the barn and race right up to the loft. Watch out, kitty.