So I guess, you’re all wondering how on earth the memory of my beloved dog passing away could possibly relate to one of my favourite travelling memories. Well, I’m here to tell you a wild tale about how my ‘virtual’ dog was left on the top shelf of a bunk bed in one of the MOST beautiful places on earth.
It all started the day I was born into a loving family, who couldn’t care for me. Fast forward seven months and a plane ride across the Atlantic ocean and I was adopted by a Canadian couple rural Ontario.
My parents always wanted me to maintain my heritage but I was always a little hesitant. Growing up Canadian I had little interest in pursuing the education of my ancestral roots and more in the advancement of my video game levels or the next episode of Hannah Montana. Of course they eventually won out and in August of 2008 we decided to travel world wide to visit my homeland.
During this trip we travelled amongst an adoption group and visited absolutely breathtaking places. Including Xian Xian, Beijing- right during the pre-olympic period!- Shanghai-the most futuristic city I’ve ever seen- and so much more. But it was the night our travel group spent on the Shanghai Malev- a train that travels what feels like faster than the speed of light- that my whole world came crashing down.
This train had every service imaginable on hand, maid service, bunk beds, mini tv’s, you name it, the train had it. So as a nine year old Canadian raised girl, I hung out in the top bunk, ate lays chips and played Nintendogs- a classic Nintendo pet care game- with some of the other girls I had met.
I remember the moment as if it was yesterday. It was a great evening with many laughs had, that was until the incident. As usual I remember my parents and I retiring for the night around 9, tucking away into our little bunk pods. There was a small ledge on the back of the top bunk, which at the time seemed AWESOME! So I tucked in my little gaming console, and shut my eyes.
The next morning felt like a blur with breakfast being served and getting off the train in what felt like, 20 minutes-probably closer to an hour or so- of waking up. So being the nine year old I was, I rushed around last minute to pack my toys.
After leaving the train, we quickly boarded a bus which would take our travel group to our lodging for the night. I remember the tour guide’s voice being very monotone and blah, for a tour guide. So as a typical child, I asked if I could play my gaming console with a friend. Unfortunately this is where the story gets worse.
As I rummaged through my bag, my moms purse, and all of our on hand luggage there was no console to be found. My face hot and flushed, my eyes starting to well with tears and my heart pounding five miles an hour, I knew THIS WAS IT. I ran to my mom while we drove past mountains, smog and beyond gorgeous scenery and regaled the tale. I remember my mom telling me some sort of ‘it is what it is’ story, because we were a trillion miles from home as foreigners so there was no hope in finding it.
After a semi- large meltdown and a stern talking to about responsibility, my trip of a lifetime continued on. Although my friend was lost, many memories, photos and laughs were had. It’s roughly eleven years later and I still remember my homeland trip being filled with happiness, joy and lots and lots of delicious dumplings… but I will also never forget that this was the trip that my ‘virtual’ dog went to doggie heaven.