Tag Archives: vacation

Chloë Views Life on the Road

Backseat driver

I barely had a chance to catch my breath and collect my thoughts on our trip East. Heather, Mike and I rolled through more than 4,000 miles in 15 days, and I was on high alert for almost all of them. From my perch high above the back seat of the car I could see in all directions, and I would not allow myself to close my eyes for an instant. Something bad could happen if I didn’t pay attention. But after about 10 days, it got stressful. My eyelids began to droop, and I whined more frequently, for no apparent reason. Heather’s patience wore thin. I got yelled at and poked more than once.

Good dog hunting, Havre MT

I’m not complaining, however, because the good parts still outweighed the trials. I got extra treats, the new trails w walked were great (except for mosquitoes), and each night in my crate I slept like a log. But for me, the best part of the trip was chasing prairie dogs in various locales across the plains. Montana, North Dakota, Minnesota, Michigan…all of them featured fine furry friends for me to stalk and hustle after, even with Heather restraining me with a tight leash. It’s like the moment I saw my first prairie dog, I reverted to total hound dog mode. My ON switch got hit, and hit HARD!!! This contributed to my general edginess.

Demonstrating at the border, Waterton Lakes, AB

I was so glad to finally get back to Syracuse. When we drove through the neighborhood to pick up a house key from my Aunt Susie, Heather rolled down my window in the back seat and I damn near jumped out, so excited was I. Only the strap from my harness and Mike’s outstretched hand prevented me from flying away.

Waiting for a train, East Glacier Park, MT

There’s no doubt that Heather will use this time in Syracuse to get serious about addressing what she sees as my escalating behavioral problems (that is, my demanding whine). She’ll make Mike be serious about it, too. (“We must be consistent!” she’ll say.) While that might not sound like a recipe for a fun vacation, at least we get to stay in one place for a while, and for that I am grateful. Life on the road was getting tiresome.

 

Chloë Welcomes Mike and Heather Back from Vacation

As the nights turned cool and crisp (just the way a natural burrower like me prefers), I sensed the change in the air. Then Mike and Heather returned. My honeymoon was over.

Wiggling Chloë welcomes Heather back.

While they were away, I got away with murder. On one morning walk I found a soft, fabric ball, slightly smaller than a tennis ball, so it fit comfortably in my mouth. Mike would have said “yuck” and never would have let me keep it. But my sitter and new best friend Lynn did, and when I took it home she even volunteered to wash it for me. Now, that’s service. Lynn didn’t even seem to care if I sat on her bed or the living room furniture. So I did! She really knows how to overstuff a Kong, too. She can come back and take care of me any old time.

Chloë shows off her handiwork on the refrigerator.

I tried to be fairly well behaved while Lynn was here, but I had to show her some puppy behavior from time to time to keep her honest. Towards the end I was getting a little bored, too.  I actually started to miss those long walks in the park with Mike. So I acted out a few times: I rearranged the lower refrigerator-door photos, gnawed on the handle of my toy bin, even peed on the throw rug outside the bedroom. As if I didn’t know better! But why not? After all, I’m still a puppy, right? This kind of stuff is expected–and I knew I could get away with it.

Now everything is just about back to normal. Yes, my Kongs have less peanut butter and yogurt stuffed inside them. True,  I’ve been ushered off the furniture more than once. And I have to admit it, the force and volume of some of Heather’s sneezes sound like Mount St. Helens eruptions to my sensitive young ears. But the plusses of having them back far outweigh such minor inconveniences. After all, Mike’s around the house all day long, and anytime I whimper or bark he’ll come running to cater to my every whim. In late afternoon I can count on a long walk in the park followed by an impeccably prepared, balanced and nutritious meal (if only there were more of it, dammit!). What’s more, I’ve overheard that new tussles with my brothers Frank and Stanley and a hike with my old friend Tara are on the weekend agenda.

Yes, they’re b-a-a-a-ack, and I’m primed and ready for action.

Chloë Gets a Vacation

Mike has really been falling behind on my blog editing. I have a lot more to that I want to report about our recently concluded getaway,  but before I had a chance to make my final revisions, Mike and Heather up and skipped town. It was kind of strange, really, because neither one of them gave me much of a goodbye when they scooted out the door. Like I didn’t understand what all the suitcases and computer bags mean? Give me a  little credit, please.

Chloe, enjoying her vacation from Mike and Heather.

Besides, why should I care that they left for a while? I’m here at home with my new best friend Lynn, and I’m getting better treatment than Mike ever doles out. Heather, of course, will be my BFF forever, no question. But even she deserves a break, right?

Anyway, it turns out that Lynn may become an even better ghostblogger for me than Mike has been . I’ve decided to bypass Mike entirely while he’s away, and I’m going to get Lynn help me out instead. When he comes back, I’ll consider my options.

Meanwhile, I think Lynn and I are both having fun. I like having a slightly different daily routine, and I’ve noticed that Lynn throws in the occasional deviation to challenge me. Well, I’m nothing but flexible, especially when it entails getting a treat.

It’s been hot in Seattle all week, and last night Lynn turned on the fancy tower fan in the bedroom. When I pretended to be a bit frightened of it, just as I figured, Lynn whisked me  up, put me up on the bed and let me cuddle with her and play with squeaky toys. Are you kidding me? I’ve been getting braided bully sticks, string cheese (my favorite treat of all time, which is past 6 months!) and even putting little pieces of fresh apples and pearsin with my meals.

Mike and Heather who?

Chloë Answers Some FAQs

During a short lull in my social whirl, let me catch up with some of the e-mail and letters piling up in my inbox.

  

Q: I’ve never seen a dachshund with blue eyes before. Why are your eyes so blue?

A:  “Don’t it make my brown eyes blue?” Always loved that tune by Crystal Gayle! But my eyes aren’t really blue, they are brown. It was the flash on the camera made them blue. We don’t know why. Mike explained to me that he knows how to eliminate redeye in a photo, but doesn’t know squat about removing blue eye. That photo peering down at you from atop this page  was one of the first photos of me. Now, of course, there are dozens (maybe hundreds!)  of photos of me to choose from, so we could change that heading photo; that would give my distant readers (and there are many!) a more accurate representation of my regal countenance. But I just don’t know. We’re kind of attached to that surreal, Village of the Damned look. What do you think? 

Q: Are you really bald on the top of your ears? 

    
 
 
 

 

A: Come on, isn’t that silly? My ears are not bald, they’re topped with light brown fur that isn’t nearly as long as the fur around it. Heather thinks it’s starting to grow in, while Mike thinks I’ll have these doofy ears forever. The vet, of course, told me I need ear toupees. Eleven weeks old, and already doomed to the character roles. 

Q: I saw the photos of you and your brothers Frank and Stanley. You three are really all from the same litter? You don’t look anything alike! 

 

 A: That’s what everyone is saying, but it’s true. We’re just a small part of the endless mosaic of wirehaired dachshunddom, I guess. Remember, America is a melting pot, Canada is a mosaic. But I digress. Check out these photos of mom and pop to see where we get the different seeds of our wiredness.

My Mom, Banshee: Happy Mother’s Day!

William, my dear old Dad: A real champion, especially with the ladies.

Q: Are you coming to the East Coast this summer? 

 
 
 
 

 

A: The genorosity of my Eastern fans is overwhelming. Fans in Syracuse, New Jersey, Florida and even international fans in Ontario, Canada, have been clamoring for me to come east with Heather and Mike this summer. I am flattered and honored, but sadly I must decline. While I’m sure these guys don’t want to be away from me for even ONE SECOND, I decided it’s just too much schlepping around (to quote Mike). We would have to change planes, change cars, change where we sleep…just too many ch-ch-ch-changes, as my buddy Dave “Diamond Dog” Bowie would say. I’m into my routine. Maybe some other time, when Mike can drive me across. In the meantime, you’ll just have to come out to Seattle, or settle for this crumby blog.

 

Well, that’s about it for now. As you can see from this photo below, I’ve got some more serious business to attend to. But do keep those questions coming! 

Chloë Has a Getaway

It’s been quite a couple of weeks, I must admit: very tiring, very stressful. Leaving the nest, of course. That’s always a biggie–and that was only the beginning. Then there are all these new things to get used to. Plus, unlike my mom Banshee, these guys NEVER feed me enough! Especially that tightwad Mike.

Chloë plays with chucker on the lawn.

So with all the stress I’ve been under, I was really glad to go on a weekend retreat to my favorite resort in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains near Fall City. This place has it all: mountain views, a pool and outdoor grill area, a huge HD TV, fully stocked bar and kitchen, plus horseback riding and hiking trails right off  the patio. All that stuff, of course, is mostly for Mike and Heather. For me, the best part was rolling around on the endless expanse of velvety green lawn. Plush. I also got to meet three horses, two humungous cats, and Tara, who got a bit snippy with me when I got in her way (that’s OK, I took her ball home with me to get even).

Chloe follows Heather across the lawn.

Chloë, Queen of the Wild Cascades.

So we made a few trips to the barn and hiked a little in the state forest (even though I don’t have all my shots yet and I’m not supposed to–shhhhhh!). Like everything else I’ve been exposed to so far, at first it felt a little scrary and I did some whining, but then if I stuck with it, it turned out to be fun. I think life’s going to be like that a lot.

Hope you enjoy these other snapshots of my most wonderful vacation yet. Sadly, on Sunday afternoon it was back to that old routine. There better be some new toys back there at the homestead, or else I could turn into one petulant puppy.

Tara, Heather and Chloë chill out after playing.

Heather, Chloë and Correy saddle up.

Chloë parties hearty on her getaway.