Sunday, June 28, 2009

Hardest on the Dogs

We're all moved out now. The buyers are moving into the house tomorrow.

Little Rock is south and east of Berkeley, but we headed north, to Chico when we left Berkeley yesterday. I needed to spend our last California evening with our dearest friends, Chris and Alicia. Their successful move to Chico several years ago is very encouraging to us, and I needed encouraging.

Moving day was hard. Almost as hard as having a baby, but with nothing as sweet to show for it (except some cash in our bank account). We kept telling ourselves that we could not indulge in self-pity when other people are suffering so much worse in this crazy economy. Still, it was hard to let go of my beautiful home that I loved so well.

But once we got on the road, I realized that the change will be much harder for our aging dogs than it is for me. Chloe is 15 and Tashi is 13. They've lived their whole lives up to now in our Berkeley house. Never experienced hours in a car with 100 degree heat outside. Didn't get to vote about moving to Arkansas. As the day wore on, Chloe became completely disoriented, and Tashi nearly drowned herself in Alicia's swimming pool. Both are anxious beyond consoling.

Leo gently carried Chloe to our upstairs motel rooms last night. I think both dogs slept OK (once I let Tashi join me on the bed). But besides giving them lots of water and long breaks in air-conditioned spaces whenever we can, there is little I can do to relieve their distress. Its heart breaking. Here's Tashi asking me, Can we go home now?

Today, we turned South. Anthony Thomas gave us directions for a scenic route from Chico to our dog-friendly motel in Lee Vining, at the edge of Mono Lake. When we get there, I'll try to get the dogs a ground-floor room.

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