I had heard a lot about “Up North” from Momma prior to our trip. It was, after all, where she was raised. I know that this part of the state was near and dear to her heart. She grew up on a farm outside the minuscule town of Gully and attended school there and in nearby Gonvick. She still has many relatives and friends there and often stays at the cabin in the summer. (Forget the winter, Momma says – it’s too cold – she says she is still waiting for global warming to reach northern Minnesota.) I always know where Momma stands on the issues.
I also know that no one had better make derisive comments about where she grew up. For example, last winter a “friend” made a snide remark about the area, saying something like “all the people up there are so Duck Dynasty.” Well, that got Momma going because she knew the “friend” was being derogatory. Her rage was tempered, however, by the fact that she admires much about the Duck crew, and therefore chose to take it as a compliment.
I got to experience “Up North” first paw this month when Momma and I spent 10 days there. Contrary to the opinion of the uninformed, I loved it (maybe I’m a little Dog Dynasty myself!). There were people and dogs everywhere and I got away with a lot more then when it’s just Momma and me.
Her relatives really know how to push her buttons and constantly tease and make fun of her (which may explain why she is the way she is). However, they also like to tease me – do I look like a fish?
Since Momma was always running off to play golf in Bemidji, I was usually left in the care of the aforementioned relatives. In fact, I think Momma viewed her family as built-in dog sitters. They got back at her though, sending texts like “Lina sure likes hot dogs” (off limits) and “Into the beer again; Lina is stumbling around a bit” (off limits to me). I know these texts drove Momma crazy(er), but apparently not enough that she came home to rescue me.
Even after the relatives left, she relied on her “village” for my care. One day Momma left me with some women next door who had started the day with a Bloody Mary bar. You might say that was a little negligent on her part, but I say, party!!! When Momma came home, she found us on the floor of their cabin – the ladies teaching me to dance on my hind legs! I’m sure Momma was a touch upset and wondered what else went on, but I wasn’t about to tell her – after all, what happens at the lake stays at the lake.
Of course, the “water dog” indoctrination program continued unabated up there. To that end, Momma decided that a ride behind the pontoon on “Big Mable” was in order and put the dreaded life jacket and Doggles on me. This, needless to say, was met with whoops and hollers (think Duck Dynasty again) and much ridicule. Momma ignored the jabs though and demanded a turn on Mable – cutting short the ride of the children in front of us who were actually enjoying themselves:
Unfortunately, like all good things, our time at the cabin came to an end and Momma announced that it was time to return to “The Cities.” She had business to take care of there, she said, and errands to run (code for facials and shopping and the like). She promised we’d be coming back soon though and I can’t wait. “Up North” is a special place, and I dare anyone to say otherwise!
Lina, Honorary Dog/Duck Dynasty Member