I don’t travel well.
At first, I’m excited. I remain focused on the preparation. I think of how nice it will be to not have to jump up in the morning and take the dogs outside. I won’t have June Buggie taking a flying leap onto me as he chases (or is chased by) Bubba Cat. I won’t have Graybie wanting to be held while I use the toilet.
I will learn much, laugh much, and have a good time.
But once I arrive and settle in, I find that I’m not content.
I get tired and cranky because I can’t sleep. My routine is off. The accommodation is comfortable, but the smell of bleach on the crisp, white hotel sheets doesn’t match the comforting smells of home.
It’s times like these when I’m reminded of the joy that comes from sharing my life with animals.
I fear nothing when in my home. If the smell of smoke is in the air, Rumpy lets me know something is wrong. If someone comes to the door, DeDe will let out a fearsome warning bark. If a neighbor does something outside of the norm, Rumpy will warn him or her by barking.
I sleep warm and I sleep well in my own bed. I sleep on one side of the bed. Bubba sleeps on the pillow beside me. Little Girl and Graybie sleep on either side of my legs. Junior patrols at night, but does frequently snuggle at my neck. Rumpy is at my side on the floor, and DeDe is in the bedroom doorway. Malachi and Hissy keep watch from the climbing tower. How do I sleep like that? Quite well.
I put on no airs in my home, yet I know I am well-loved. The staff at the Courtyard and Westin hotels are polite and courteous. The Bark World staff are as well. My fellow conference attendees are excited and thrilled. But it’s not the same. Rumpy doesn’t care if I belch, fart, or talk with food in my mouth. He likes it when I am messy, especially while eating, because that means crumbs on the floor.
Soon I will be back in my own bed, snuggled with my family. I will complain when June Buggie jumps on my chest. I will complain when Graybie tries to help me eat. I will complain when I’m up early taking Rumpy and DeDe outside to pee.
And I will be quite content while doing so.