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On any given weekend I find myself on a Bro Ride.
No, the Bro Ride isn’t me cruisin’ in my car with a bunch of buddies. The weekend Bro Ride is what I call car time with Tybalt, our Pomeranian.
Like many companions of the canine ilk, Tybalt loves to go for car rides. Neither the destination nor the duration of the ride matter much.
I started taking him every other weekend on trips to my bank, where I would use the drive-thru window. Even with only one hind leg, Tybalt is skilled at positioning himself to look out the passenger side window.
Usually, for the trip I have the window down enough for him to stick a nose out when he’s so inclined, which is fairly often. To some degree, I imagine, the attraction to riding in car for a dog is not unlike that of those humans who bask in the glorious freedom of a summer drive in a convertible with the top down and the wind blowing through their hair.
Somehow he frequently manages to roll down the window himself, and most times he rolls it down far enough to get his whole head outside. I always make sure that he is tethered inside, though.
I’m beginning to think he’s slowly learning the workings of the car so he can one day drive it himself. I think he has rifled through my glove compartment before.
At any rate, Tybalt had always been enthusiastic about going for car rides, and after a while, he seemed to know to expect a car ride on that one day when my girlfriend, Rebecca Ricks, left for work and I stayed home.
Since at that point our car rides were every other weekend — and sometimes depended on other factors — it was hit or miss as to whether or not his expectations were fulfilled. But I tried to be as consistent as possible.
Disappointing a Pomeranian that has the pouty face down pat can come with some devastatingly guilt-infused results. Or at least a chorus of “Sorry, dude, not this time” from me.
Some months ago, I began making a point to use Saturday as Bro Ride day, and that’s when I started referring to it by that name. Even if I don’t have any business to conduct at the bank, I’d put off short errands during the week until Saturday just so I could take Tybalt for a car ride.
Sometimes it’s just a quick stop at the grocery store. Sometimes it’s a stop to drop off a bill at the night deposit box.
All Bro Rides are for errands for which I do not have to leave the car for long or at all. On occasion when I couldn’t go Saturday, I’d use Sunday as a makeup day.
But it doesn’t matter to Tybalt. It’s all still an adventure.
And he seems to look forward to each weekend. In fact, if I’m home on a Saturday, and we haven’t gone for our Bro Ride by mid- to late-afternoon he hangs around me and mopes. Sometimes he barks at me.
I expect one Saturday, as I’m vegging out on the couch in front of the TV, I’ll hear what I vaguely recognize as the jingling of my keys, and moments after the fact, it will register that I heard the back door thump shut and my Corolla start up.
And neither Tybalt nor my car will be anywhere to be found.
But I can’t say I blame my Pomeranian.
After all, every dog deserves occasionally to feel the wind blowing through his fur.
Robert Villanueva can be reached at (270) 505-1743 or firstname.lastname@example.org.