Tuesday, February 12, 2013

False Start

Holy Crap. This is not the way to begin a long and brutal excursion to Alaska!  I admit I was trying to keep the load light, but I underappreciated the dog’s need for his toys.  Hey, I like toys just as much as the next cat, or dog. My favorite is my fuzzy orange carrot with the feathery foliage (I have at least a half a dozen of them), but you never saw me dragging them to the royal wedding. Okay, let me back up. I see some of you saying, “huh?

Since the last time I was in Chicago my good friend Cheeto (of the @rosieandcheeto Twitter fame) has endured many huge changes in his cat life.  First the Lady got married. Then there was a baby added to the mix. The family moved to a new locale. And the stupid dog isn’t getting any mellower with age. All this has been very stressful. So to help reduce some of the load my poor friend has to endure, I agreed to take the dog for a long, long walk.  To Nome.

The dog is a huskie named Rockford, but we know him as the Woofie Monster, because he woofs and woofs are totally annoying to cats. He has a lifetime dream of running the Iditarod. I am going to oblige him. I strolled into Chicago this past weekend, thankful I missed the huge snow in the northeast, but thinking all that snow would make an excellent base for a dog sled run. There have been rumors that the Iditarod was cancelled because of lack of snow in Alaska, but that was just rumor.

I have never before traveled with a companion, let alone a dog.  I’ve had to forewarn the Yard Cats of his coming, so they don’t freak out when we show up in the railroad yards to take the train to Seattle.  Except, well, I never got that far.

After a few cans of refreshing tuna juice and a little nip to take Chicago’s gun free zone edge off I had a good night’s sleep at Cheeto’s new digs, which are very nice.  With the Iditarod’s start date less than three weeks away, I was eager to head out to the railroad yards the next morning.  The Woofie Monster and I haven’t even “practiced” this sled thing yet.  He claims it is in his blood, but the dog has been city living all his young life.  We need time to prepare for all day sled pulling, living in the dark, surviving severe weather and sleeping outside in extreme temperatures for three weeks during the race.  He has never even slept outside of his stupid little cage-thingy.

Apparently, the dog has attachment issues. It must be a pack thing. While he had no problem with the idea of taking off for the wild blue yonder in the Land of the Midnight Sun, but he whined like a stupid puppy when I told him he had to leave his stupid stuffed toys in Chicago.  You can’t carry a lot of accouterments when jumping trains. They get in the way and they could very well get stolen. Not all train jumpers live by The Code, especially the two legged kind.

We were headed to the yard when the dog whirled and took off down the street. Running full tilt. Man he can run, but the commands “heel” and “no” faze him just as much as it fazes me…nada. But then I’m a cat.  What excuse does he have?  Well, I never thought I’d see him again.  I wasn’t sure how I would to break this news to Cheeto.  I should not have been surprised when he said he didn’t mind as long as the dog didn’t come back to his house.  We had a good laugh over that.

photo by Jeff Schultz iditarodphotos.com
But the dog did go back to the house. Apparently,  to retrieve one of his chew toys…the hedgehog. He showed up this morning, licking my face. UGH. He still wants to go to Alaska. So I guess I am off to run the Iditarod with a huskie named Rockford and his hedgehog. Better to have the dog chew on his toy than me, I guess.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The hedgehog, don't leave home without it. - meowmix