Archie (left) and Frankie. Parallel pals?

I’m very much looking forward to my upcoming trip to San Diego and Santa Barbara, two of my favorite cities and home to many of my favorite people. And many of my favorite dogs.

But visiting my best friend, Clare, and her dog, Archie,  will be bittersweet. It’s almost certainly the last time that Frankie will see his old friend…or should I say Arch frenemy?

I’m hearing Clare gasping right about here, so let me explain. Archie — who was diagnosed recently with CCD — may have a good deal of time left. But he’s not up for traveling anymore; he’s arthritic and it’s a bit confusing for him to go to new places. And, what with his diabetes and car phobia, Frankie’s not the greatest traveler either.

In the past, Clare and I and Archie and Frankie used to rendezvous halfway between Tucson and Santa Barbara. This time, in deference to Archie’s superior age and wisdom, Frankie and I are going the extra miles to see them.

I will of course report on the meeting after the fact. But while I’m still home and have time, I’d like to provide a bit of background.

First encounter

Not long after I got Frankie, I planned a trip with Clare to Scottsdale and Sedona. I didn’t have much hope for any bonding on Frankie’s part. He hadn’t evinced any friendliness towards any dogs — or people — in Tucson; I was grateful that he’d finally accepted me after a trial period of shunning. So imagine my surprise and delight when my best friend’s best friend bonded with mine. I’ve detailed the story here.

Great expectations

I had high hopes for the second encounter that Clare and I planned for Frankie and Archie in Palm Springs. It didn’t pan out, but in the process, I learned something about Frankie –and about myself. Read about one of the reasons I had to establish a guilt-free zone here.

Third time’s a charm?

Well, not really. As the above picture from last year’s visit to San Diego shows, the boys are not exactly interacting. But we didn’t expect them to. And at least Frankie didn’t try to hump Archie.

Coming up

We’re staying at Clare’s house, and Frankie has never visited Archie on his home turf. Perhaps he will revert to his early grasshopperhood, giving due deference to Archie’s zen mastery. Or not. Stay tuned.

10 thoughts on “A Sentimental Journey”

  1. Good luck on the road. I hope Frankie does well in the car … dewclaws crossed! As for your meet up with Archie, here’s a saying I’ve heard: Blessed is he (she!) who expects nothing from others for he (she) shall never be disappointed.

    BTW – Arch frenemy … LOVE IT.

  2. I read the stories you linked to and am *so* glad I took the time – they were really wonderful background pieces to how we all know the Frankie of today, but also lent a wonderful peek at your own growth, recognizing your dog’s limitations vs what you wanted for your dog – great stuff, Edie!

    I hope Frankie is okay with the car trip, and that you all have a great time–will be interesting to see if Frankie maintains his aloof behavior, or if being at Archie’s home changes Frankie’s comfort level…perhaps it will spark his memory of his enlightened self as reflected in your story on their first meeting.

    1. Thanks, Mary, for being such an intrepid reader! I was a little worried about the length of those stories, but since they are crafted stories — as opposed to more informal blog entries — I was hoping they’d reward the time.

      1. That was precisely what I thought when I read them…they were full-throated stories – and they sang;-D I was really pressed for time today and when I had that fleeting thought I just shrugged, I couldn’t just up and leave the story!
        It is as Clare said, we have all adopted Frankie, I needed to get his backstory, and your writing is fun and easy to read:) So thanks!

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  4. Archie and I (well, more I) await the visit with stinky dog breath! I have to admit that I have high hopes. I think Frankie will enjoy the turf, and enjoy attempting to intimidate Archie. Arch needs all the stimulus he can get now, in completely familiar environs, so this seems like a visit made in heaven. Even scarier than the proposition that Arch and Frankie won’t meet again is the proposition–certainty–that Archie and Edie won’t meet again, as I’m not leaving Santa Barbara until… Okay. Now I can’t breathe

    1. Well, I didn’t want to say that. I figured the gentler way was to, y’know, blame the dog. Deep breaths..

  5. p.s. Edie, you and Frankie are not visiting some sort of depressing long term care facility when you delight us with your visit week after next. As I review Archie’s phases, I see that he started out as “Archie Original Extra Strength”, then went to “Archie Classic Bold” to “Archie Mellow Brew” and is now in a very rapidly changing phase of “Archie Lite (sic)”. Still Arch, still fun!

    1. Aww, and here I thought Frankie would finally be the life of the party! Always destined to be the wallflower when Arch is around, I guess…

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