Sleeping soundly, Cole nuzzled into the duvet and Archie was curled in his favourite blanket—you would think nothing could wake them. Then came the sound of the keys tinkling softly as they brushed against the crystal dish and Cole’s ears shot up.
Cole whispered, “Did you hear that, Archie? Archie… ?” “Archie!!” He whispered louder, “Mom’s got the keys!!”
Cole, now arrow straight beside Archie, roused him out of his sleep. “Look, I know you are almost 95 years old, but we are going in the car!! Wonder where we are going? HMmm! HMMm! Where do you think?!?!”
A wiggling black-and-white ball of fur, Cole’s excitement is uncontainable yet his attempt at restraint is admirable while he follows the rule to wait for Mom
“Cole, why can’t you be still!?? Fifty-four years old and acting like you’re two!” Archie grumbled as he stretched through a yawn and a full-body shake.
Cole squeals, “Here she comes! I LOVE the car! The window! The trees! The people! OOOHHH, the squirrels, the rabbits, the birds…” His cat brothers Chase and Sully, waking from post-breakfast comas, lift their heads wondering what the excitement is, roll their eyes and snuggle back down.Cole squeals, “Here she comes! I LOVE the car! The window! The trees! The people! OOOHHH, the squirrels, the rabbits, the birds…” His cat brothers Chase and Sully, waking from post-breakfast comas, lift their heads wondering what the excitement is, roll their eyes and snuggle back down.
Mom walks in, “Ready?”
Cole shrieks, “Watch this, Archie!!” and launches himself sliding on the tile floor and dashes to the front door. “Favourite part!” exclaims Cole peering up at Archie, who is nestled in Mom’s arms.
In the car, Cole perches on his pillow peering out the back window, and asks with great anticipation, “Where do you think we are going?!”
Archie looks up, “Hot today, so… Oyster River forest or maybe Canyon View Trail.”
“Yes! Love that one!!” exclaims Cole. “Come up here Archie, you’re missing the trees, the cars, the trucks, the people!! ARF! ARF! And the dogs!”
Lounging in his bed, Archie comments sarcastically, “Don’t need to see it brother, your commentary covers it.”
“We’re here!! Mom c’mon… !! Harness, leash!??” Cole’s a black-and-white blur as Mom struggles with his leash, he hears the click and leaps “Archie, hurry up!! Can you hear the birds!! ARF! ARF! Wait! Smell that?!?” Cole’s nose skims the parking lot, his barrage of commentary continues, “Dog, person, dog, person, dog, person, cat… wait, what??? Cat??” Puzzled, he sniffs again, looks up at Archie in the back of the car, who’s peering down and questioning his brother’s nose with a withering look of ‘you must be joking,’ as he’s lifted down.
Archie sniffs, “Hmm, ugh… a cat. SWEAR to me you’ll not tell Chase and Sully; can you imagine them here with us?!?! Swear!!” demanded Archie. Cole looked at him, pondering his ability to keep a secret. Again Archie demands, “Swear!!!”
“Okay, okay…” Cole begrudgingly agrees to keep the secret of cats in the forest, turns and walks full thrust until his leash catches forcing him to wait for Mom and Archie. As they get closer Cole begins his pattern of zigging and zagging forward and backward, crisscrossing around trees one way then back the other right into and under a fern, then catches up, and bolts ahead.
“Archie, a squirrel’s trail… help me find him!!”
Archie plods in an unwavering line beside Mom, loving the forest floor’s soft coolness on his paws, never once distracted by Cole’s chasing of every bug, and butterfly, sniffing of every squirrel-scented, dog-scented and, apparently, cat-scented fern leaf he comes across. The only thing that EVER stopped Archie was a bear—a tale for another time.
Archie complained “PLEASE stop weaving, you’re making me dizzy…” But Cole wilfully ignores the plea and runs as far as his leash will let him. The adventure continues…