Monday, February 21, 2011

Lord, What Have We Done

Circumstance and deep cover Government Conspiracy has forced a move from the urban deep south to the untamed wilds of northern Canada. When the boss's visit home turned in to a bureaucratic immigration quagmire of forms and delays, we hatched an exit strategy, packed up the hounds, the trolls, and the princess, and headed for the land of ice and snow.

While driving 2000 miles over main trucking routes and heavily traveled interstates with three motion sensitive hounds, all your worldly possessions, a box full of hungry trolls and a princess who must look her very best at all times in case we run into at the Flying J sounded like a fun adventure prior to departure, I can assure you that if ever given a choice in the future, I would want permanently disfiguring torture or disabling chronic illness. There is no description I can muster to explain the effects on vehicle upholstery after three car sick hounds spend three days expelling horror and mayhem in all directions. It's really all a blur, thankfully suppressed far in the subconscious, but burned deep into my memory, as clear as a video, I recall trying to deal with a princess who had a steamy foul substance of undetermined origin sprayed at high pressure into her hair while hurtling down the interstate at 75 miles per hour, one hand on the steering wheel, the other desperately trying to keep her from jumping completely out of the vehicle at highway speed. All that kept playing over and over in my mind was that Marlon Brando quote from Apocalypse Now.. The Horror... The Horror.. 

With our infinite wisdom and uncanny foresight, we chose to reacquaint ourselves with the far north climate in a record snowfall year. Taking three southern hounds who have never before seen even a single snowflake, putting them into a vehicle for three days, and letting them out into 8 feet of snow and wilderness is kind of cruel, but watching a hound try to figure out how to pee with all four paws off the ground at the same time is amazing. Two of them can pee while standing on one foot. The other can actually change feet mid pee. Our nightly routine now includes carrying our 80 pound dogs back into the house after freezing solid, and placing them by the wood stove to thaw over night.

The princess, having only been about 10-11 when we left this climate, has had to relearn basic survival skills such as not to wear a dress at -35 below, a parka CAN be a fashion statement if purchased at the right store, and do not stick your tongue on metal objects. Kids grow up so fast these days.. One day you are changing diapers and wiping noses, and the next you are prying tongues off of frozen gates and carrying their stiff dogs into the house..