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July 20, 2006

June 23: Berkeley/Oakland, CA

So on Friday, June 23rd in the afternoon, Joan and I got in the car and everyone wished us well. Everyone was Tom, Judy, Deidre, Chris (her husband), Frances and Annie, my dog cousin. Our car was packed up with a couple extra things - a big straw hat of Joan's that's been at her parent's house for 15 years (good for gardening she says), some knives for Eileen, some Chinese artwork of Eileen's, and an electric hedge trimmer that Tom's friend, Austin, gave to Joan because he got a new one. We had less of my food with us because I had been eating it but I think more human food this time around. We waved goodbye and got on Hwy 101 north.

We drove for about 4 hours and ended up in El Cerrito or Oakland, CA. Joan planned it so we would avoid traffic, but we did end up in traffic on 880 - this is the area where Joan grew up, she told me. Well, not exactly Oakland but when Hwy 880 becomes Hwy 17 and goes into the Santa Cruz Mountains - that is where she grew up! We ended up at her grad school friend's house - her name is Gina and she had a dog named Ella and we did NOT get along despite doing the dog whisperer's introduction techniques of taking us on walks together. The thing is Ella wanted to play, and I did not. So we kind of had to tip toe around each other, and I unfortunately, ended up in my crate on several occasions.

On Saturday morning they left us to go to breakfast with Joan's childhood friend, Craig. My crate was in the bedroom with me in it and the door shut. In the evening, they left again to go have dinner with Joan and Gina's graduate adviser, David and his wife. That time I was in the crate but Joan also turned on the radio so music was playing - I think so I did not have to listen to Ella outside the door huffing and wishing she could come in and devour me. I was pretty dang scared of her! Though, it wasn't like I was shy about demonstrating my feelings!

Here are pictures of us at the dog park. That is the great thing about Oakland and San Francisco in general is that they are VERY dog friendly! We got to run along the bay - in one photo I'm looking off at San Francisco and the Bay Bridge is behind me.

We look like we are friends here:

and here:

Looking longingly across the bay:

We couldn't do our usual "family photo" of everyone because Ella would not allow me to go near Gina because I did not pass her "play with me" test first. So I never got to really even say hi to Gina.

Arroyo Grande, CA

It's about time I get back to our big trip out west. These pictures tell a bit about my time at Tom and Judy's (Joan's parents). I really loved it there because we were not in the car very much. Especially after the tick infestation, Joan stopped taking me on hikes with her. I didn't want to end up sleeping in the laundry room again for days on end!

We did go up to this big park up the street. Judy and I watched Joan and Tom play something called horseshoes. They throw this thing across the dirt. In this picture, Joan was excited because she got a "ringer" - all I know is that she made a loud sound with that horseshoe. There were also some nice kids up there watching them play and they tried to make friends with me. I let them get to know me a bit but I'm always worried about those teenage boys!

This is pretty much how I spent my time outside on the patio. I loved it out there. I also was a very good dog because I never tried to run away down the hill or around the house to the street. Of course, if no one was out there with me, they tied me up but that was okay because I could still move around quite a bit.

Rosemarie and that little boy, Ian, and another older guy Craig came to visit. Lucky for me, the dogs (Tabasco and Nestle) did not come, so I had peace to lie around. They called this day "father's day". I wonder = when is dog's day? Maybe everyday!!!

A few days later another dog cousin and Joan's sister's (Deidre) family came to visit (Joan seems to have an unending supply of sisters!). This is Frances on my tail. She was a good girl - I liked her. However, my dog cousin, Annie, well, I wasn't so into her except they kind of kept us away from each other because Annie had been sick with a mysterious illness.

And Joan joined us:

We didn't get to visit too long. I could tell that Joan was packing us up and I didn't want to miss out on my ride. So I stuck to Joan. Judy and Tom gave up trying to keep me in the kitchen because I was so distressed!

July 17, 2006

Dirt is cool

Dirt is really cool. And I'm not talking about in style kind of cool but more like temperature cool. It has been very hot here and Joan was outside this morning picking those red berries off the bushes. Meanwhile I decided to dig up this one spot a bit and sit in the cool dirt. This is the spot that no grass grows because I run through it so fast and at an angle that I dig up the grass. That is when I see a squirrel outside and then Joan lets me out. I run down the stairs and pivot turn right on this grass area (now dirt) and then head off toward the oak tree where those squirrels usually hang out.

Now I'm inside with the loud machine that blows cool air into the house. I don't really love it because it makes noise but I don't hate it either.

Yesterday, Joan and I went to the dog park. There weren't that many people there because it was really hot. But I wasn't that hot because I immediately soaked in the MIssissippi River. After that, we drove a different way and ended up at the airport and then I saw Eileen, Joan's sister. I got really excited!!! I had to give her several kisses when she got in the car. I also licked her arm several times. She wasn't super into it so I settled down. Then, we went into her apartment and I could smell CATS. But I couldn't SEE any cats. I really wanted to make friends with them but I guess they don't want to be my friend.

July 13, 2006


(Sorry I haven't gotten our trip photos up --soon!!). On Sunday, I woke up having to pee like crazy. Joan let me out and then we went on a walk. It was so weird. I felt like I had to go all the time, so I squatted about 20 times on our 1 mile loop. Then we went to my favorite place, the dog park, and there, I squatted about 60 times - seriously it was like every 10 seconds - 1 minute. I just really felt like I had to go but nothing would come out. Joan kept saying things like, "Bosco - again?", "What are you doing?" "There must be something wrong with you." That's not very nice.

In any case, this continued on the whole day - I had to keep asking Joan to let me out of the house so eventually she just left me outside. I managed to hold it overnight but we were up the next day and I had to go, go, go, go, go, go, go.... Joan left and a bit later, Alyssa (the daugher of Tim, my favorite guy and neighbor), came over and let me out in the yard. She's so sweet. She came over again later on and then, not long after, Joan came home. We went on another strange walk because everytime I squatted, Joan pushed a plastic container under me. She's weird.

BUT then we ended up at the VET! I don't like that place. There was a cat in a box there, and I was panting. Then there was another cat and weird smells. They made me get on this black pad and announced 48.5 lbs. Okay. Then we went into the room. The room with two doors, no windows, a bench (that I got up on), and a silvery high table/countertop (no food on it - nothing on it!). Despite this sparcity, you could HEAR a lot - too much. I heard people outside both doors and I would pace around the room. Then I'd jump on Joan's lap. Then I'd jump up on the bench. Then I'd jump down. Meanwhile, panting, dripping saliva, panting, shaking.

Then a woman came in. She picked me up and put me on the silvery table. She started feeling me everywhere which is like petting so it was okay - sort of - I still had my tail between my legs as I was a bit scared. She looked at my paws which I don't like especially because they are itching me like crazy. She put something in my butt (eeks!!) and then said 100.6 or something like that. Okay. Normal. Okay. All these numbers. She looked at my back paw and said that it was bad - because I have been licking it a lot. Then she left us in there. We were in there forever - like 40 minutes or more. More panting, pacing, jumping, licking, shaking, pacing, listening, whining. Finally, the woman returned and had a long discussion with Joan that pretty much said, they don't know what's wrong based on the examination of my urine that Joan collected on our walk. She gave us pills for my foot and we left (of course paid our big bill!).

I started to feel a bit better - not feeling like I had to go so much. The next day, Joan got a call and they said that I have what's called a "bladder infection" and that the pills I got for my foot will also fix my bladder. Yeah! That was the worst feeling because I know I'm not suppose to go in the house but then you feel like you have to go so you really have to distract yourself so that you don't think about it - especially when Joan is gone and I'm alone in the house.

All I know now is that I'm getting to eat a lot of peanut butter!!!

July 4, 2006

Home sweet home

We're back home in Minneapolis - yeah! I started to recognize our neighborhood and started to go crazy in the backseat, despite being tethered to the seatbelt. I'm happy to be home and am sleeping a lot and I've also started to eat more food which makes Joan happy. In the coming days, I'll tell more about my adventures in CA and our trip back across 2/3 of this place called the United States.