Out for the longer day off morning stroll yesterday Mom, and we swung downtown via the paths that runs along the river. Wore my big Sorel boots, and slipped and slid my way through the snowy sidewalks that loop down and around the river, over Blackfriars bridge and back to the Village. I have to wear those big awkward things, otherwise my feet will freeze to the ground, as I stand and wait for the fluffy bastard to inspect every scent and pee stain we encounter.
Her golden highness is quite oblivious, but she is admired, and more oft than not the first question that comes from their mouth is always, “what is she“?
With her barrel-shaped Yellow Lab body, and her shaggy Golden Retriever fur, sporting her delightful mustache and beard an ancient Celt could be proud of, accompanied by that golden halo of mane, these features are from some hazy progenitor thought to probably be Burmese Mountain Dog, yet there is something else.
I was thinking last eve as I admired the golden tuffs of fur that spring forth above her eyes, that if I documented their length from year to year, I may be able to predict the amount of winter snow. Irish transforms in the winter months, and gains this new layer around her eyes and snout, the mane around her neck and her bloomers round her bum, is thicker and longer and of a darker hue.
One of her admirers last winter exclaimed …”why she’s a big fluffy golden teddy bear”. And, yes she is, for at a moments notice, in a fit of joy, she will wrap those golden furry arms around you, and hug you in what we have come to call an “Irish hug“. Unfortunately for poor Irish, many in polite company don’t see her affections in the same manner, and alas I try to curb her enthusiasm.
At once wise and goofy, of gentle heart, and with her golden demeanor, I have tucked up in bed with her on many occasion, hugging her as one would any teddy bear.
Having had cats for so many years you know Mom, I had forgotten the solid state a dog inhabits in your life. Cats are like accoutrements of the house, going about their day as the wee lions they are. Dogs though, dogs wish to accompany you, stay by you in order to protect you, and unconditionally accept all the broken bits and pieces of you. Without her I believe I would be a disaster.
And as one of her admirers yesterday said SHE IS MAGNIFICIENT.
She reminds me to slow down, admire my surroundings, and learn how to sniff out the fundamentals of my environment. When I try to control her she rebels, yet when I relax and let her do her thing, well that makes all the difference. She refuses to be pulled from that which she is entranced with, so plants her feet and becomes like concrete and can not be budged. Our walks therefore have taken on this weaving, slow meander through snowy sidewalks, plowing through the occasional off path drift of snow towards some scent she is intent.
I find that she is training me, and not me her. No longer do I believe myself her master, as we have become true companions, and are of equal stature in the others mind (though I suspect myself one or two pegs less than her).