This dog. I got her for my 9th birthday. She is 16 now. 16 and-a-half. She’s Godsent. That’s what I think, but maybe I’m bias. We took her on her first big roadtrip in August 2020. She was 15. 15-and-a-half. We went up North to the Yukon in a lowered Sierra. We camped the way. That was the dog’s second time to the Yukon. She flew there with me in 2018.
Her first time flying, she was less than 3 months old. We flew to Prince Rupert to visit Nona. I was 9 years old. Nona escorted us to the Rupert airport, which is on an island, and walked us to security. Nona told me to put the bag down on the conveyor belt. I did. Lola went through the X-ray machine. Security was shocked. They asked me to take her out of the bag, to check that she was okay, they said that dogs were not supposed to go through the X-ray. They hoped she would be alright. She was.
Lola’s flown to Prince Rupert a lot. Maybe 10 times, maybe one-dozen. She’s been on planes, trains and automobiles- we shared the backseat of my ma’s 1965 Volvo Amazon, in the beginning. In the Yukon I’d bring her to class. She wasn’t supposed to be there, and nobody found out. Lola’s doubled with me on bicycles, horses, and motorcycles- sometimes we’d even be three-up. But she likes the truck rides the most.
That 2020 roadtrip was her first long roadtrip. Pushing three weeks. She was a champion. So we did it again in the winter, for New Years 2021. We drove up to Fort Nelson in our 1996 Ford F150. On January 3rd 2021, we had to pull over near Powder King. That’s two hours outside of Prince George. The dog peed on me, wobbly and shaking, with her eyes glitching back and forth. Like a seizure. We let her out. She could not keep her balance. We thought she might die there. 10 degrees below freezing. When there was nothing we could do, we wrapped her in a blanket and aimed to find an emergency vet, it was Sunday night in Prince George. By the time we arrived, the dog was back to normal. Resilience. When we’re strong, it surfaces. At just the right time.
2021. She turned 16. We brought her camping some more. And in the fall we flew with her to Slovenija, stopping briefly in Turkey to change planes. Did I mention she’s been to the Caribbean? This dog. She’s been all around. She been my copilot for most my life. The older she gets, the more grey she amounts, the more seasoned she becomes, the crazier our adventures. I cherish that. This dog.