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…Previously, in South Dakota

They looked like their father was a cow and their mother was a warthog, because they looked like someone had taken a cow and squeezed all of its extra parts up around its shoulders until it had no neck at all. And their haircuts were just terrible, like Julia Child or Norm MacDonald, but worse.

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Valley no longer on fire

But when we got there, there was no fire, only wispy clouds stuck to the mountains and blocking the sky. “Did the fire go out in the rain?” I asked. I know about science, so I know that when a fire gets wet it turns into smoke. “Ugh, the forecast said the rain was supposed to be over by now, but the storm’s been following us since California. I think it’s going to rain the whole time we’re out here.” That happens, because Mom is the Weather Jinx.

The bravest dog

Then we came around the bend and saw that the trail had fallen into another hole. In the spot where it disappeared was a rickety metal ladder that had fallen in and was trying to climb back out. I peeked over the edge, and saw that the drop was almost 2 Moms tall, so I backed up real quick so it couldn't suck me down like it had the ladder. Mom stayed at the edge inspecting the rock. Then, to my horror, she held out her arms and tried to scoop me up! Luckily, I am very fast and she can't run.

When to run, and when to RRRUUUUUN!!!

I could smell something big, and there were recent tracks in the snow that looked like deer hooves, but were way bigger than any deer’s feet I’d ever seen. I remembered about the flying tampon last night, and the mystery of all the big things on top of the mountain yesterday, and concluded that there must be all kinds of giant things roaming in these hills.

Wowie zowie and deer-cows

The trail we found was one of the most beautiful trails that we’ve ever run. Mom is the kind of person who rarely leaves positive reviews, but this trail was so great that it inspired Mom to leave a Six Star review on Alltrails, which is like the human version of leaving pee mail on your walk. I told her that she should start her review with “Wowie zowie,” but I guess that’s an expression that is very professional for dogs to say, but sounds different to humans.

Devil’s Punchbowl

If there’s one thing that will guarantee that Mom will commit to doing something hard is if someone nicer and more cheerful than her says that they are going to do it too. It’s okay to be outperformed by a jerk, but if Mom gives up before someone with the personality of a marshmallow, she couldn’t look herself in the eye in the morning.

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