I lived in Oregon for a really long time, and I never in a million years imagined that I’d move from there, but my life changed in various ways, and then I fell in love.
And married a Texan.
Well. He’s not a native Texan. He’s a transplant here, like me. But he’s lived in Texas for forty-odd years and, you know, Texas can change a guy. He wears cowboy boots and big belt buckles. He plays Texas Roots music on a Collings guitar. And he has a Texas dog.
Neville Dog is part black-mouth cur and part mystery, a dog-and-a-half stuffed into a 47-pound furry package of cuddles and TNT. My husband rescued him from the pound for a dollar. Neville thanked him by chewing the corners off three Oriental carpets, shredding the doormat, and gnawing through two expensive halters and an “indestructible” bed. But now, hallelujah, Neville has settled down.
Neville, waiting to go outside. (photo by R.J.Q. Adams)
When Neville thinks a walk is in the offing, he jumps three feet straight up into the air, executes a triple Lutz-double toe loop, licks your face, and bolts for the door. He’s pretty good with people and other dogs, but he has a thing for big black trucks: he barks and leaps at them. For a moment, on the “person end” of the leash, it’s like holding dog-kite combination.
We’re working on it.
But most of the time Neville’s a pussycat. Er, metaphorically speaking. (Don’t tell him I called him that.) He sleeps half the day and sort of snorkles when you pet him. He sneezes when he’s excited. Adorable!
Anyway, Texas is different from Oregon. Less rain. More sunshine. On my various walks I’ve seen frogs and turtles and armadillos. And cacti. And alligators! The cars and trucks are bigger, and there aren’t as many bikes. (I traded in my bike for running shoes.) People are really friendly in both places, but here they say y’all. Sometimes they say all y’all, depending.
I still write in the quiet of morning. Still love it when the words and pictures begin to form in my mind. And I’ve still got about a thousand books I want to write.
Some things never change. Thank goodness!
See also: Just the Facts