Orbit, the Flying Dog

Our Flying Dog, Orbit. I fooled you with the noble picture on the front page. This is actually what she looks like most of the time – a blur running past, ears blown back. When we picked her out from the pound, the woman looked at us dubiously. She evidently thought this was a dog for a young boy, not a solid married couple. “Wouldn’t you like a calmer dog,” she said. No we wouldn’t. This was our dog.

We chose the name before we knew how apt it was. She’s a go-go girl. Chases her tail. Ran away once, my husband saw her down the street and yelled. She did a u-turn immediately — knowing she was in trouble — and came huffing back as fast as her little legs would carry her. She loves riding in the car, preferable head out to the wind, as you see. We keep the window shut when we go over 40 mph. But the minute we slow down, she’s panting and waiting for it to open. Who knows what she sees or smells. Whatever, it’s her favorite.

She’s particularly obsessed with motorcycles. She spots them miles ahead on the freeway, yips and barks until we pass, then gazes longingly out the back window. Oddly enough, she doesn’t recognize a motorcyle if it’s parked.

She also knows when we’re getting ready for a trip. Not too hard; we gather our suitcases at the bottom of the stairs. Usually, yes, she’s coming with us. But last year we went to Spain to visit the girl I have mentored since eighth grade (junior year abroad) and dogs were staying home. Orbit was furious. No way we were abandoning HER. As my husband struggled to close the door, she bit him! Not hard, you understand…she just couldn’t help herself.

I never had a dog growing up. I was a cat lover. But now I can’t imagine being without one. We’ve had eight over the years and each has had a distinct being. Sometimes I feel a personality in the room and when I look up, I’m surprised to see it’s a dog.

Finally, apologies to those who got the story about the red Italian blouse twice. You’d think after 6 months I’d know how to drive this thing…


  1. Love the blouse, and had to laugh at the story that goes with it. Orbit looks like a happy dog, and you can’t ask for more than that!

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