Nice To Know You
Story 10 of Muttley Crew
By Trish Hubschman
“Bubba, mom says it’s time to go. Get up here,” Mikey calls out, or maybe it’s Randy. I still haven’t figured out how to tell them apart. I’ve got to remember to ask Bubba.
Sighing, Bubba looks at me. “I guess this is it, sister look alike.”
I wince at the nickname. Cookie started it. When he first saw Bubba, he though we were my brother and sister. We’re not, but the name stuck.
“I don’t like saying goodbye,” Tabitha cries. “Your nice, Bubba, kind of like a brother. Right, Chauncey?”
Why do I feel like everyone’s ganging up on me? “Yeah, yeah,” I finally say. “You’re okay, Bubba. We’re all a team.”
Rocky and Cookie are also in the room. Rocky sniffles. “That is so beautiful. I don’t know how I’m going to say goodbye.”
Cookie pats his shoulder. “You don’t have to right now, Rocky. Bubba does.”
Rocky’s head pops up. “Oh, yeah, Bubba, we’re going to miss you.” He looks at Cookie. “What are we going to do now?”
“I believe our next move is to go upstairs and take our places,” Bubba explains, turning.
“Wait,” I call out and he stops. “Just one thing I want to know. How do you tell those two boys apart?”
He smiles. “It’s easy. I’ll tell you the next time we get together.”
Rocky bursts into tears. “Oh, how beautiful. He’s making plans to get together again.” We all look at him.
Single file we start up the stairs. This time Bubba takes the lead, followed by me, Tabitha, Cookie and Rocky. Before Bubba gets into the cat carrier we exchange meows and woofs. “I knew they’d like each other,” one of the boys says. I often wonder if children understand what us animals say to each other. Bubba gets into the box and the door closes. He’s on his way.
Rocky is the next to leave. “I don’t want this party to break up. This is the best time I’ve ever had.”
We all agree on that.
Cookie nods. “I’m sure the humans will do it again next year. The little ones had a lot of fun too.”
“What’s wrong now?” Tabitha asks him.
“Next year is a long time away,” he replies. “I have to wait that long to see all of you again. You might forget me.”
I roll my eyes.
“We only live a few blocks away from each other,” Cookie tells him. “We can hang out with each other, I’m sure.”
“What about the cats?” Rocky says and both dogs look at me. What do they want me to say?
Dam came downstairs and clipped Rocky’s leash on. Saves again! Rocky turns his head back as Sam leads him up the stairs. “Say goodbye to all my new friends for me, will you?” Behind me, Tabitha is crying. How much of this do I have to put up with?
A little later it’s our turn to hit the road. Little Janie tries to shoo me into the cat carrier. “Come on, Chauncey, you have to go in there.”
“All right, all right, stop pushing me,” I snap. Tabitha giggles from inside the carrier. “And don’t you dare step on me,” I tell Tabitha.
“I wouldn’t do that,” she replies.
“Yeah, right,” I say. Well, okay, she doesn’t step on me. It’s worse. Once we’re tucked in the backseat of the car on one side of Janie, with Cookie on the other side, staring out the window, Tabitha falls asleep with her paw draped over my back. I’m about to sock it to her when I realize that it feels warm and cozy. Without thinking, I snuggle closer to her and settle down to take a snooze too.
The humans are right – it’s time to get back to our every day lives. This year’s vacation is over, but we had a great time, made new friends, and learned a lot of new things. We’ll do this again next year and have even more fun – now that we all know each other. It’s always good to have something to look forward to.
Trish Hubschman is the author of the Tracy Gayle mystery series, Tidalwave, Stiff Competition/Miss America, and Ratings Game/Talk Show Queen. Tracy is a Long Island private detective. Her sidekick, Danny Tide, is the leader of the rock band, Tidal wave. Tracy is hired to protect Danny. In the process, they become a team.
Trish is a graduate of Long Island University’s Southampton Campus and has a bachelor’s degree in English-Writing. She worked for New York State Civil Service for sixteen years. She is deafblind and lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, author Kevin Hubschman, and their dog, henry.
Her website is www.dldbooks.com/Hubschman/