We’ve traveled through some pretty magical places but there’s always been something a little different about Bowling Green, KY, that I’ve never been able to quite define. Even though it's a smallish town of less than a 100,000 people I suspect it is home to more dog lovers per capita than anywhere else we’ve been.
But then, during our most recent trip to Bowling Green, it became apparent why it's so special. I was on an early morning walk with Hudson when I began to think about Buddy. The Crestmoor suburb we were staying in was loaded with squirrels and seeing all those insolent rodents running amok and unchecked reminded me of just how much I missed him.
You see, if the Bud Man was there with us he would tree every single one of them but he had passed away a few weeks earlier from end stage lung cancer and congestive heart failure. But even in his final days squirrels remained his singular obsession. He never met one he didn’t want to chase making him the anti-Will Rogers of squirrels I suppose.
He was much on my mind that morning when Hudson and I rounded the next corner and I saw something that sent chills down my spine: a white one. The short span of time between thinking about Buddy and then seeing an albino squirrel was spooky and surreal, but we are no strangers to seemingly impossible coincidences. Trail magic has always followed us on our travels and I wasn't surprised to feel Buddy's presence.
Shortly after our morning constitutional, I put Hudson up at our host home and headed to Lost River Cave to help the BG Humane Society setup for an event later that day. Arriving early, I walked the grounds studying the geology and history of the place and then I spotted another white squirrel. WTF?
I didn’t have my iPhone with me for my first sighting but I did this time. Though hard to see in the photo nearby it’s high left on the main tree trunk. I had never seen one before so twice in a few hours seemed particularly peculiar. Once Lorri Hare, the head of the Humane Society, got to the Cave I asked her about this strange occurrence and she said for some odd reason albino squirrels were common in that part of Kentucky.
And then it all made sense.
Bowling Green, the City of White Squirrels, is to dogs what Mecca is to Muslims. It's a Holy place that Hudson, Murphy, and I were drawn to on our walk back in the winter of 2008 while on our own pilgrimage.
And though the reason was not apparent to me back then, today as I adopted a Great Pyrenees puppy from them, I finally understood why.
The circle is now complete. One journey has ended and another has begun.
Behold, Hudson’s new Brudda….