“I got the Can’t-Waits!”
“Fido, move over, will you? I want to get this travel case stored properly, you know?”
“I know we’re going somewhere,” Fido panted. “Where could it possibly be?”
“That’s the beauty of this kind of a road trip, Old Man. With really nothing on my mind and nowhere in particular to go, why don’t you tell me, for a change?”
“I want to go to the Biscuit Capital of America!”
“Where the heck is that?”
“I don’t really know. But if there’s a Hubcap Capital of America, and a Mall of America, and a Baseball Hall of Fame, there MUST be a Biscuit Capital of America.”
“OK, we’ll go in search of the BCA,” I said.
Traveling isn’t as easy—or as cheap—as it used to be. We stopped by the Shell Station on our way out of town, but held off filling up. Surely there would be better prices, somewhere.
“Hey, this isn’t the Biscuit Capital of America,” Fido said with a fair amount of indignation.
“Don’t worry, you big red lug,” said I. “We’ll find it. That’s the beauty of a road trip like this one. We have nowhere to go except to the Biscuit Capital. The only thing we have to do today is just drive around, in search of it.”
“These are my favorite kinds of road trips,” Fido said. “Could you roll down the window a little bit more?”
“Yes, but not too much, Fido. I don’t want you to catch some gravel or pumice in your baby browns. You wouldn’t like it so much, either.”
Even so, Fido wiggled his nose out the crack in the window and took a nice, long sniff. It was as if he could have stayed there for hours.
“Could you please turn the ball game on?” he asked when he popped back in.
“It doesn’t matter,” Fido said. “I just like the sound of a ballgame on the radio.”
Fido doesn’t care if it’s baseball or football, hockey or hoops. He just likes to have something on.
We headed north—this was the last legitimate autumn day of the season. Soon, the yellows and browns would give way to the whites and grays of early winter.
Me, myself, I don’t really mind. I had my iPhone configured to college games, and when I plug it in the car’s stereo, I get the games, independent of location.
“How about them Huskies?” I said to Fido.
“Which ones?” he wanted to know. “Washington or UConn?” Then he drifted back to sleep.
We turned westward at the Usual Spot (Fido got up and poked his nose out the window for a sniff), until we arrived at our destination outside of Markleeville. The aspens shimmered in the breeze. We were booked for the weekend.
Fido jumped out of the back seat and onto the gravel.
“Where are we?” he said.
“We’re still in the mountains,” said I, “just not OUR mountains.”
I knew it was. When we walked into our cabin, the doormat said, “Wipe Yer Paws,” and on the kitchen table, wrapped in ribbon, was what Fido was looking for all along: Two biscuits.
“This,” he pronounced, “must be the Biscuit Capital of the Whole World!”