We stopped around an hour outside Seville, in a service station. It being a three-hour journey, we decided to try and stop every hour – just in case Aneira began to get a little antsy. It was warm; Andalusia was still trying to shake off the summer just gone by. The stop gave Aneira a chance stretch, walk, relieve herself and refuse a drink all in the space of five minutes.
It soon became evident that we were making good time on our journey, and were suddenly an hour away and had only stopped once. To keep up the momentum, we decided against stopping again and pressed on to Granada in the hopes of finding and checking in to our hotel as early as possible.
Aneira was still confused, excited, and anxious at the same time. Oddly enough, consistent speeds on the motorway calmed her, whereas slower speeds once in the city – and particularly motorways – bothered her. Why, we still can’t quite understand. Looking back, we’d like to think it was more excitement than anything.
Our rooms were your standard suburban, budget hotel . Of course, they put two single beds together to make a double, and it wasn’t long before a dog was up and making the most of something remotely comfortable-looking. Some would find the idea of a dog on top of pristine white sheets as dirty but in the six months of so of having her, I couldn’t see how having a baby or toddler on the same bed wouldn’t be any different or dare I say, dirtier.
It wasn’t much later that we found something wasn’t quite right with her. It is funny just how quickly you can pick up whether or not something is up with a dog despite their inability to speak directly to you. Aneira wasn’t as perky as before, and kept keeping her head down. When she shakes, she shakes from the front and finishes by shaking off her tail. This time however, she was unable to shake her tail.
I can’t quite put in to words how a dog without its wag looks. There is something infectious about a waggy tail, and with Aneira seemingly unable to do so, it made for
quite the devastating sight. When your dog is ill or has a sprained paw, the only thing you can do is help them and make sure they don’t move too much. Aneira was able to walk fine, but it was obvious that her tail was giving her some discomfort.
It appeared as though she had sprained her tail. Siobhan thinks it was due to her bath the day before her parents arrived. Very few dogs like baths, and any time Aneira is released from the bathroom, she begins a process of trying to shake as many times as possible to dry. It made the most sense. A quick Google search told us that most dogs took a few days to overcome minor sprains, and we took solace in that.
Our hotel’s policy on dogs was simple: no dogs to be kept in the room alone for more than 30 minutes. It could have been worse; and it enabled both groups to go down and have breakfast together. The one downside of our hotel’s location was all five of us going in to the centre together. The tram outside our hotel was an option, but we doubted whether or not it’d be pet friendly, and we ruled out bringing the car in due to the unnecessary stresses getting Aneira back in the car, finding a car park and paying yet more parking fees.
We decided on rotating care of the dog. I looked after her the first afternoon, and Siobhan’s parents were more than happy to take her in the evenings as they had their down time after an afternoon of sightseeing. It was a nice gesture, and allowed both Siobhan and I to travel in to the centre and have some alone time.
All the while, Aneira took her first trip away in her stride and despite being unable to wag, appeared to show her appreciation by stretching on the comfy hotel beds. We didn’t
really know what to expect with this trip, between the car trip and bringing a dog in to a hotel, but we left Granada confident that we could bring Aneira on more trips in the future. She was to use the cliché, a very good girl.
We took a detour on the way home to visit Ronda, and its historic bridge. It felt rude not to and, given how well the trip was going, an opportunity to cap the trip off. It was here that we discovered Aneira had a disliking for horses, thanks to a local procession taking place that afternoon. This struck us as odd, as Aneira came to us from the countryside, where she had no doubt seen them before.
With Aneira now beginning to show us her true colours after a somewhat quiet six months, we began to think just how much more there was left to discover.