December 24, 2016
It's long been a tradition of mine to bundle up against the December chill and take a walk through the woods to the old pond. With very few exceptions, my companions on these walks have been four-footed, not two. My human partner in life suffers from a nerve neuropathy and walking causes him pain. Last year, I walked alone having lost my beloved Jett in May.
This year is different. Deuce is my constant companion and he loves walking in the woods more than I do. Being young, he covers the ground with long strides, ranging far from the path following scent. His joy at being out and free is evident in his expressive eyes. And I find joy in watching him run and explore.
Our walks begin with a few Frisbee tosses because he loves his Frisbee. It also burns off the first rush of excitement. Then we take just a few minutes to review leash etiquette. I think this important in case we meet others walking in the state park. Duece needs to come to me quickly and be well-behaved so he doesn't make a nuisance of himself until we can continue in private. He also discourages interaction with strangers.
Time was only the locals walked in "my" woods. I miss those days. City folk come to the state park and get lost in the woods because they don't stick to the marked trails. I know where I'm going. These folks end up in my front yard with no idea where they are or which direction takes them back into the park to find their car so they can bolt back to the safety of some city. But I digress...
Today our walk is in jeopardy. I woke to the sound of rain on the bedroom window. When I stepped outside with Deuce (so he could do what a dog needs to do first thing in the morning) I discovered it's a cold, driving rain with a brisk wind. A light mist I think we could bundle up against, but not this. This is a bone-chilling, damp cold. Deuce's thick fur won't protect his paws from the wet, near-frozen ground.
Perhaps later in the day, the clouds will move on and we'll get to go on our walk. Perhaps not. It may turn out to be a good day to finally do website updates while doing some laundry. I also need to send short thank you notes for a few Christmas gifts I received from work-related contacts, those gifts being more about what I do professionally than me personally and therefore requiring a note.
Whichever path the weather puts me on will be fine. Deuce and I can walk or spend the day lounging in my study. I can play one of his doggie DVDs to keep him entertained while I work on the website. Either way, sometime today, rain or no rain, two strip steaks and a hamburger pattie will hit the grill. After that, the three of us, myself, the spousal unit, and the young dog will likely spend a quiet evening watching old Christmas movies.
As for our walk in the woods, there's always tomorrow or the day after. I'll make sure the young dog gets a good run. Maybe he'll feel the spirits of Callahan and Jett walking with us. I know I will.
Merry Christmas Eve to you and yours. May you spend the day doing the things you love to do.