We're taking a nap and I hear what I think is someone stealing my bicycle.
I raise up, peek out the window and see my bike, just sitting there, surrounded by Wyoming's high desert (See the pic? That's our view).
We're pretty isolated here, about 25 miles south of Green River, WY, in Buckboard Crossing Campground. I doubt a crook's anywhere nearby.
Oh well. Must have been a dream. I'm awake now. So I get up. And feel an eerie emptiness in the motorhome.
Because they are gone.
My dogs, my giant standard poodles. My babies! Are both gone.
Th door is wide open (that's what I heard ... the door opening) and my dogs escaped.
I don't panic.
I'm sure Joshua, our good boy, is near. Jacob, our hunter, our runner, is Milwaukee already (joking), so there's no sense in me running.
I grab Jacob' leash (joshua doesn't need one) and head out the door to hunt for them. And, amazingly, they're both nearby. And both come running to greet me. Wow. Jacob's not running away! Jacob's not hunting! Jacob's trotting merrily back to see me.
He's so happy to see me. Maybe he's changed?
For the next two days, we give Jacob freedom. And he's such a good boy. He stays right with us. He doesn't hunt. He doesn't run.
Until Day Three.
Allen opens the door to take the trash out and Jacob leaps LEAPS out, and runs RUNS deep into the desert. He' gone. Out of sight. Just disappeared, where scorpions and rattlesnakes live, where coyotes howl. Oh my. Jacob's GONE!
I grab his leash, run outside and start to call. JACOB! JACOB! JACOB!
A fellow camper stops.
"Are you looking for a black dog?"
"YES!" I say.
"He's across the road. Chasing a herd of pronghorn deer."
A whole herd? JACOB!
I jump in the car and drive back and forth along the road, looking for my dog, his deer or even a suspicious cloud of dust. Instead, I see a flash of black down by the marina. JACOB!
I zip down. Jacob sees me and a jackrabbit. And he's OFF, chasing that rabbit! And I chase them. In my car. Over ruts and across brambles. In the high desert. JACOB!
Then, I see Allen, on his bicycle, circling around to the left. I'm on the right. Jacob's in the middle. He stops. We got 'em. But ZOOM! He's off!
Oh, this is a bad doggie.
He stays 10 feet ahead and refuses to even look our way. He runs up hills, down the street , leaps over ravines and chases a whole warren of jackrabbits.
And then SPLASH! He goes for a swim in the Flaming Gorge Reservoir. JACOB!!
But AHA! Allen's set for the catch. Jacob comes out of the water the same way he went in. And Allen gabs him by the collar, hands him off to me, and I stuff him in the front seat of our little car (he's never been in the front; his head touches the ceiling). He' dripping wet. Out of breath. But, wait, is he grinning?
At home, he sleeps for hours and awakens with a limp. But he's not sad. Instead, I see that grin again. And think maybe he's thinking about the hunt, the excitement of a swim and the thrill of a front-seat ride home.