This is Cowbee, and he is the most-loved stuffed animal in the entire world.
He also happens to be the world’s most well-traveled miniature stuffed cow (fact).
Cowbee is going on 20-years-old now, and he has visited about just as many countries at my side. Internationally, he has visited, but has not been limited to: Turkey, Croatia, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, the Dominican Republic, Scotland, Canada and Puerto Rico. He has had his ventures across the United States as well, including having visited: Arizona, Washington, Missouri, California, Louisiana, Massachusetts and Florida.
However, he is about to about to go on his most important journey yet.
As you can probably tell, Cowbee has seen better days, even if those days were at least 15 years back. At one time, he actually had a mouth, a tail, more than one ear and two horns (lost via golden retriever accident). He is also currently sporting some unsightly bald spots which are leading the bell in his belly to itch to escape his blue fur. I also recently learned via some old photographs that there was once a polka-dot pattern on his bow. Who knew.
At least Cowbee looked better than this gross dog, Chocolate, while in Nova Scotia.
As a result, I have come to the responsible adult decision to send Cowbee to Realms of Gold Stuffed Animal Hospital, the most reputable doll hospital around. Unfortunately, by “around,” I mean on the other side of the country.
Through my meticulous research, I have learned that trusty Dr. Beth of the hospital is an avid blogger which is a great comfort. Also, I came across this clever blog post by Daisy, a fellow overgrown stuffed animal lover, who sent her fluffy companion Lamby to the hospital and was thrilled by the results. Cowbee also identifies with Lamby because he, too, is a small farm animal.
Being that I live in the middle of nowhere, the closest doll hospital is about four hours away so I don’t have much choice but to ship my best friend in a box via FedEx and hope for the best. Apparently, stuffed animal restoration is not a budding industry.
Cowbee’s usual traveling quarters.
It pains me that he has to resort to this type of travel, since usually he is carefully tucked away in my trusty backpack (never in a checked bag) and I obviously never leave my bag unattended, even if I don’t come across one of those dumb airport signs. Cowbee is literally the best travel companion one could ask for – he takes up little space, never complains, and is always cuddly – so I can’t believe that now I have to pack him in a box with styrofoam peanuts all by himself and send him across the nation.
However, in these days before I ship Cowbee off to be recowed for a month, I am reminiscing and appreciating all the cool places we have been together and how much (I) have grown in that time. He has, quite literally, been around before I can remember (I frequently come across photos of me younger and younger clutching this small stuffed toy) starting with his first journey from the pharmacy where he was probably purchased for less than $3 and brought home to a blonde baby.
See you for New Orleans, Cowb.
Everyone loves a five-inch-tall farm animal, especially in Florence, Italy.