QUOTE OF THE DAY (OR MORE): "No, no. You don't understand. This is an '89 Calico. I'm pretty sure that exceeds the Kelly Blue Book value. The cat's totaled." --A comedian whose name I forget talking about a vet who presents a $3,000 bill for a 12-year-old cat

Monday, November 22, 2010

Sophie the opera star

I love watching dogs with their heads hanging out the window of a moving car; it's just one of those things in life that makes me smile. I've never seen a dog look sad with its entire head (or more) protruding from a car window, wind in its face, eyes slightly closed, nose to the air, delectable scents wafting readily toward it.

I used to be chagrined that Sophie couldn't enjoy this favorite doggie pasttime because she's confined to the very back of the SUV... but then I thought of folding the back seats down so that she, too, could partake of this near nirvana experience.

Once I figured it out, she needed no encouragement. She's gaga about the wind in her whiskers as we drive down the road, no matter the speed. She's in the doggie zone. Happy as a clam.

I must admit that, when she sticks her head out the window, I get such a kick out of watching her that I reposition my sideview mirror so that I can see her more readily (yes, I also watch the road and my rearview mirror).

Now, Sophie-style is to poke her full head out of the car window, close her eyes slightly, and close her mouth completely.... at least it was her style until recently.

Last week on the way to pick up the 12-year-old from school, she changed tact in a way that had me giggling uncontrollably. She had her full head out the window; it was raining slightly. For some reason (I forgot to fill her water bowl, perhaps?), she opened her mouth. No big deal, right? Except that opening her mouth gave her a completely different sensation, and she loved it. She loved it so much that she proceeded to maneuver her jaw left and right, back and forth, to feel the difference in the streaming air. That was funny in and of itself. What made me lose it was that when she moved her jaw around, the altered windstream created a whistling noise. The noise delighted her to no end, and before you know it I was driving the country roads with a German Shepherd girl sticking her head out the window, moving her jaw consciously back and forth to enjoy the melody it created. The "aha" moment was hysterical. She would close her mouth, cock her head, then open it and move her jaw: boom - whistle sound.

Driving with Sophie will never be the same again.

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