Monday, May 12, 2008

Dog Days

Good Morning. Wow, we've had record sunny and warm days here in The Netherlands. And it's only May! Every day I start out by doing my yoga and then taking the dog for a walk along the canal. As a matter of fact, I end it that way too, walking along the canal. It is my Guermantes Way. It is always so soothing, watching the water flow, Leon runs along side. I take a book to read to pass the time waiting till he's ready to come out of the gate that surrounds the canal. Soothing...

Yesterday though, that calm meditative state was broken by the following:

Calmly I strolled along the canal as Leon ran, sniffed, ran, sniffed, the sun shining still in early evening, sparkling off the water, green all around and flowers in full bloom. Down the canal I see the most beautiful white swan. His wings are outstretched and he is majestic. I reflect that this is an aggressive pose and think, "What is disturbing him?"

Then, I focus on Leon again, no longer running, sniffing, but in the hunting walk of a typical English Springer, head low down, back straight, tail stiffened, taking careful steps, right on the edge of the canal, stretching his neck to get closer to the swan who is in unreachable in the the middle, and then...splash! He's in the water! The swan is gigantic now and hissing and Leon, unperturbed, is swimming toward him. Luckily, the swan decides it's not a good idea to stick around and begins to swim away. No problem, Leon swims after. By this time, I'm at the edge of the canal, having skirted dog doo and yelling for him to come back. He's not listening, he's after quarry. In fact he thinks I'm cheering him on.

I scramble back up to the fence and out the gate and hightail it to where he is because 1) He's heading for the bridge and I'm unsure where and how this canal ends and 2) He can not get out with the high walls around the canal. Quickly, I'm calculating how I can catch him and resigning myself to a swim if necessary.

Ahhh...at last, just before the bridge he resigns himself that it is a lost cause and he is an old man after all. He's just a little bit ahead of me and tries scaling the wall. This is when he realizes that he's not in a good spot. I run on ahead and call him, kneeling down and when he swims over, I grab his harness and pull him out. Saved! At this moment I have a wet dog and am sitting in grass that is well used by many doggies (you get the picture), but who cares? I have my doggie again and he's safe. Whew! Life is never boring with Leon.

I'm going to go see right now if I can try and reconstruct these images in my sketchbook. Wish me luck!

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