Saturday, July 17, 2010

Rise and Shine !

I know, it's Saturday and we should be sleeping in. Instead we get up at o-god-thirty to take the dogs for their "spin". Today we got to the park so early that we found ourselves standing in front of a locked gate. Great Falls Park didn't want us that early and so we went "one over" to Riverbend Park, just to find the gates locked as well. Now what ? We decided to try the Nature Center which was about two minutes from Riverbend. I don't need to tell you that the gates there were locked as well. We were starting to long for a nice breakfast and a good strong cup of coffee, rather than walking the dogs. On our way back we passed the gates of Riverbend Park and just as we were about to pass a truck pulled up and the park manager opened up for us. Yeah !
Dogs need their daily walks. By nature they are roaming animals and just being locked up in a backyard somewhere does not really provide quality of life for them. Therefore we spend at least one to two hours in the woods every day. If there is no time, we make time. I have to admit that I would not be walking every day if it weren't for the dogs. They are my furry motivators. What's the point in exercising on a hot and humid day if it weren't for the dogs ? We could be turning around in bed one more time and sleep in. Instead we're dripping sweat, wipe cobwebs off our faces and drown ourselves in bug spray to please the furgang. I hope they know how lucky they are............. Needless to say, on a real humid day we don't speed walk, but rather make it a long sniffing excursion which they dogs enjoy tremendously.

Grandpa Walter on the other hand is not a morning dog. I have to carefully wake him up, because startling him may cause his old ticker to go into overdrive and we don't want to risk that. It takes him about five minutes to become conscious and then we have to do the wild dash to the door for morning potty duties. Old age and bladder control don't seem to go together too well. Even in dogs. After Walter is done slurping his breakfast soup, he climbs back to bed and won't be seen until about noon.

The rest of the furgang gets their gear on and off we go. The advantages of being the first ones at the park are plentiful. First one doesn't encounter people with dogs, which makes my existence a lot more pleasant because I don't have to dart into ditches, the underbrush or behind trees upon seeing the oncoming enemy (Monster's point of view). We also get to see a lot of wildlife, which is always nice, depending on the direction the wind is blowing. If you ever see a woman with three dogs attached to her left hand and a cam in the right at a wild dash through the underbrush, don't fear: It's us in hot pursuit of some deer, fox, skunk or other wild animal. You probably will hear us first anyways, because Monster tends to announce every single track of a deer he'll find. That's a breed trait and it took breeders probably half a century to achieve that trait just to annoy those of us who don't necessarily go out to hunt for their dinner.
Besides wildlife there is another beauty of nature I love to admire: The sunrise. It may get boring, but here's today's sunrise over the Potomac at Riverbend Park. Enjoy !
On our way back from the park I had to turn the car around and help put this little guy into safety. He was crossing the street and I was not so sure if he was going to make it at first.

Let's just hope he didn't try to crawl back across . . .

Needless to say, the strong cup of coffee tasted even better after a walk. So walk your dogs - it's an important part of their life and it keeps you on your toes. Just think of all the nice sunrises and the wildlife you may be missing !

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