Little did I know—when I saw my Mommy trying on the most fabulous white dress in front of this massive, three-sided mirror—that all kinds of exciting things were about to happen. I scrunched down on the carpet, my tail wagging back and forth, and could not take my eyes off of her as she swirled around looked at the dress from every angle. She looked like a real princess!
Life began to get very hectic the day we left our home in Mt. Pleasant en route to Grandma and Granddaddy’s house (aka Camp Grandma) in Murrells Inlet for a big event. I pushed my nose out the car window to take in the wonderful and familiar smells of pluff mud and soothing salt air, and immediately I knew where I was. The magical memories flooded back from my first visit to Grandma’s house when I was just a little pup.
I didn’t understand what all the excitement was about, but everyone was scurrying and hurrying about during the week. Then, on June 5, I finally found out what was about to happen. Mommy held me softly and told me she was marrying dad. Wowser!
After eight years, it was about time, I thought to myself. I was joyful to hear the big news, and I got to go with them for a photo shoot. Mommy surprised me with a fancy blue bow collar with my name stitched on it and a matching leash.
Then, Mommy told me that she and Dad were going on a very special vacation called a honeymoon. I tilted my head back and forth and looked intently at her as she spoke slowly and softly.
“Don’t worry, Beau Beau, you will be staying with Grandma and Granddaddy, and they will take excellent care of you,” she explained. My eyes immediately drooped, and I had a moment of sadness. Of course, I didn’t want to see them leave without me, but I had stayed at Camp Grandma’s several times, which meant fun and adventures. So, I went in for a big sloppy kiss to send them off. Mommy said that while they were on their honeymoon, I would be on my doggymoon.
I love spending time with my granddoggyparents! They love to spoil me, and took me on long walks around the neighborhood and for nice, cooling dips in the pool, and clapped and cheered when I showed off my athletic skills retrieving my ball and my Frisbee. I even went for a big boat ride around the inlet.
“Oh look, granddaddy, let’s get a blue Boston Whaler Montauk like that one,” I barked.
At dinnertime, I tried very hard to do my best impression of an adorable, sad-eyed puppy, hoping my begging skills would be subtle and irresistible. I am not allowed to beg at dinnertime at Mom and Dad’s house, but Grandma and Granddaddy are big softies. They did insist that I sit quietly, but then when they finished eating, they would always put a taste of their yummy food in my bowl. I have trained them well . . . How sweet it is!
Can you believe my grands are bird hunters? They love to tease my Mommy about taking me with them when they hunt, knowing quite well that it will not happen because Mommy is not a hunter. So, when they read this article in Sporting Classics Daily about doodles being great bird dogs, they may have gone a bit overboard.
So out came the stuffed animal ducky, a camo buff, and a lot of big talk about what a great bird dog I would be. It was fun running around chasing and retrieving the ducky. The only thing is, I would not hand over the ducky once I retrieved it. Guess we have more work to do here.
There was just one issue they had completely forgotten about—and I am a little embarrassed to admit this—but I am very scared of loud noises. Thunder and lightning storms terrify me. I am afraid, and I start to tremble even during a rainstorm. It stormed a lot while I was at Camp Grandma, and after searching everywhere for me, Grandma found me in her closet, hiding behind her clothes. And then there are fireworks! Spending time with my grands means fireworks, and not just on the 4th of July. Nope, it seems like tourists shoot fireworks all summer long in Murrells Inlet, and it gets loud in the backyard since Camp Grandma is on the marsh right across from the beach. Sorry, Grandma and Granddaddy, bird hunting is not for me—I know that big bang noise the shotguns make.
My doggymoon was just about over. Grandaddy was going to work, and he wanted to say goodbye. I ran over to him, and he let me jump up and put my paws on his legs while he patted my head. Then I heard the most exciting news. “Mommy is coming to get you today!” Grandma exclaimed. I lost it! I darted downstairs and barked at the door uncontrollably, thinking Mom had already arrived. She hadn’t.
Grandma took me for a walk around the neighborhood, and sure enough, Mommy came driving in. I lost it again! I jumped and ran in circles to let her know I was so happy to see her. “Dad is home waiting on you, Beau Beau,” Mommy shouted. I lost it again. Dad, Dad, Dad!
After a nice visit, Mommy thanked Grandma for taking care of me. I was clearly excited to jump in Mommy’s car, but I paused for a moment to let Grandma know how much I love her. I am sure my tongue was hanging out of my mouth, and my smile was a mile wide. It was a doggymoon I will never forget!
Written for Waccamaw Outdoors Magazine, July 2021 Issue