A driver will spend 11 hours on the 747-mile stretch of highway between between El Paso and Houston before reaching their destination. I always heard from the fellow road-weary that the drive to Houston is preferred because the final approach to El Paso is nothing but open and empty desert--barren land with little to distract the senses. As a desert native, I enjoy the landscape and believe that an 11-hour road trip is miserable regardless your scenery. But this misery can be reduced considerably by the perfect companion. One hot summer, I had the pleasure of driving from El Paso to Houston with a happy dog who, at the time, went by the name Morgan. To borrow from dog owner jargon, Morgan "traveled well." She did not gripe or bark. Her potty breaks were efficient and well timed. She drank plenty of water, slept for most of the way, and poked her head near my elbow when she desired new music. This is a good dog, I kept thinking. I knew this when I met her. I knew it more when I adopted her. My thoughts would reaffirm with every mile, and eventually with each passing day. When we arrived home, I changed her name to Lady Morgana. After 10 minutes, I shortened it to Lady--protector, confidant and loyal friend. When she moved in with me more than three years ago, she had no clue her home would soon include a small human who pulls on her ears and bites her nose. She also had no clue this little human would become her best pal. I chose Lady, but Lady definitely chose Sebastian.
My dear departed Chile did not have enough time left to give Sebastian. He passed from complications due to arthritis shortly after Sebastian was born. We miss him every day--we miss his love, we miss his hugs and we miss the way he kept watch over our family. Chile was big, fluffy and kind. His favorite pastimes were chasing butterflies in the park and rolling on his back in the grass. Never have I seen a more soulful expression come from two big brown eyes. Chile is in doggie heaven now with his big sister Kelesy, watching over Sebastian, growling at Lady and keeping us safe. It is my hope that Sebastian and Gigi always know the value of sharing their home with a good and deserving dog. Teaching them to be kind to creatures smaller and fuzzier than they are is a priority. As Roger Caras once said, "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole."
PS - Lady came to us from a foster referral by my aunt Carrie. If you want to find our more about her foster group, check out Great Dane Rescue of El Paso.