As you’re reading this, I’m off to Hawaii with the family.
True, my biggest worry once I get there may be which SPF to slather on, or whether I should order a Mai Tai or a Lava Flow. But, you can still feel a little sorry for me - we’ll have our 23-month-old son on our laps during the 5 ½-hour flight.
We thought we were being smart by booking this trip before he turns two, the age at which kids have to have their own seat. We really might regret this. Our little Blond Bomber has been climbing out of his crib for months. And, this is in the dark, half asleep. No telling what he’ll do wide awake on a flight with some attitude.
And, something tells me our four-year-old daughter will be kicking the seat in front of her. It’s just a lot to ask small kids not to squirm for hours. Yes, we will be those parents others sneer at on flights.
I was a sneerer a few short years ago; now I’m the guy who will try not to make eye contact with other adults or try to look the part of a tired, beaten-down parent. Thankfully, I’m not in this alone. My wife will keep the peace, no doubt. If not, I may tip a Mai Tai early.
Since I’ll be on Hawaiian time and in an "aloha" state of mind, it seemed only appropriate that this article be "hang loose" too. Breed legislation – no way I’m touching that one today. An animal cruelty story? Way too heavy. Feral cats versus the Autobahn Society? The fur would fly on that one, but I’ll save it for another day.
Right now, I don’t want to think. I just want to share a short, sweet story. Pavarotti’s story.
If a dog could look anything less than what his name might suggest, it’s our guy. The name Pavarotti would suggest a big bear of a dog. A Rottweiler, St. Bernard, Bernese Mountain Dog. Maybe even a Chow Chow or beefy Lab. Not our guy at all.
Our Pavarotti is a Chihuahua with a long, skinny neck, spindly legs, oversized, upright ears and falsetto bark – definitely not a tenor. After coming into our care nearly 2 ½ years ago as a stray, he was re-homed this past week.
This adoption puts an exclamation point on PHS/SPCA’s promise to find a home for every healthy dog and cat in our care. It also speaks volumes about the role our volunteers and staff play in keeping companion animals healthy – both physically and mentally – while with us. Their behind-the-scenes work includes daily exercise, mind-stimulating enrichment activities, a clean environment, a high-quality diet and immediate attention for any health issues.
I should also point out that Pavarotti spent several months with dedicated foster parents; because of this, he might not look familiar to frequent visitors to our Center for Compassion this summer. Our foster parents said their good-byes and will likely be ready for their next project soon. It’s what they do. We count our blessings that we have such angels for the animals.
Just thinking about Pavarotti in his new home makes me relaxed…ready for the Islands.
To Pavarotti’s foster parents, our staff and volunteers who kept him healthy and happy and his new family - mahalo!
And to those of you who looking for a companion, please don’t hurry past the dogs who have been with us a long time. In fact, we’d love for you to take a closer look.
We're celebrating one year in our Center for Compassion. Please visit to see why our new Burlingame home is the cat's pajamas. www.PHS-SPCA.org