A much-needed weekend getaway for my husband John and myself confirmed some mysterious facts I instinctively already knew. The following is the crazy account of our weekend.

We set up camp on the clinch river at a friend’s property vacation home. Our small vintage Serro Scotty camper looked even more appealing next to the backdrop of the babbling brook coming down from the hillside rocks. And we even set up a massage table outside next to this beautiful water feature. Afterall, this weekend was all about relaxation.  No other people around us and no cell phone service or internet to distract us from the peace and quiet.

Our best friend came with us…

I guess this would be a good time to tell you that our English Mastiff dog, Bob came with us.  During the day Bob played in the creek or hung out by our side and at night he slept with us in our camper. Or I should say he slept with us in our tiny bed in the camper. Why not?  For the last eight years he has slept with us every night at home in our king-sized bed.

On the first night we managed to all squeeze together and make it work. Which was a miracle. After all, the bed in the camper is not even a full-size bed. I am a big woman; my husband is a full-grown man and our Bob weighs in at a whopping 160 pounds. Yet we fit.

We woke up, cooked an amazing breakfast, gave each other massages, and played Scrabble.  The score at the end of the first game was an exact tie with 222.  It came down to having to subtract the tiles we each had left behind.  I won that game by six points.  Second game yielded similar results, but this time John won by six points. Talk about being evenly matched.

We then went for a canoe ride together leaving Bob secured in our friend’s cabin home.  The water was calm, and we spent two hours paddling peacefully down the middle of the beautiful Clinch River.  As we paddled, we talked about how in sync we were in the canoe and in life.  So evenly matched that even when playing games, our scores were the same. 

When we returned to the campsite, Bob greeted us by the camper, he was frantic.  Turned out he had jumped through the window of our friends’ home and leaped over a gated deck, ran to the campsite and was in a complete panic looking for us. Seriously, he was completely out of breath and disheveled.  I can’t imagine what he thought was happening.  No more canoe rides for us.  

What happened next…

The second night we were not as blessed in the sleep department as we were the first night. Bob was relentless and was taking up so much space that my husband declared he was leaving the camper to go sleep on the couch of our friend’s home.

When Bob woke up and realized John was gone, he got upset scratching on the camper door to be let out. I went to let him out, but he would not leave the camper until I went with him. Bob then led me straight to our friend’s vacation home and to John, who laid asleep on the couch.

Thinking he just wanted to be with John, I left to go back to sleep in the camper. Within an hour, John and Bob were coming back in the camper. My husband, declaring as he opened the door, “We’re back! Bob would not let me sleep. He kept pulling my arm until he led me back to the camper.”

They both crawled back in bed. Bob was finally content and slept like a baby. Us not so much.

What I have always known…

Truth be told, I have always known that John and I were meant to be together.  Everyone who knows us knows that it is just a simple fact of life.  Even John’s mother knew it before he and I ever met.  She would tell me over and over again how I needed to meet her son and how perfect we would be for each other. But now even our dog Bob knows it. 

He simply would not let us be separated, not even for one night. 

Actually, when I think about it, Bob is as much a part of our relationship as we are. After all, he does sleep in our bed with us and he dictates what we can and cannot do.  Furthermore, we spend more money on him than we do ourselves.

What I discovered…

Wait a minute.  When I first started writing this column it was supposed to be about how evenly yoked John and I are.  In fact, the original name of this story was going to be “Evenly Yoked” but as I have written it, I realize this is not the story I intended. 

Yes, this is a story about love, but it is not as much a story about John and I, as it is about Bob and us. Can a couple be soul mates with a dog? This is Bob’s love story.  This is a dog’s tale. Life is mysterious

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