Abbe kept reminding me, though. She looked at me balefully, whined and sighed. She put her head on her paws and looked up at me through her lashes. I kept trying to mollify her, said, yes, we'll take a good walk, I promise. The word walk perked up her ears; the word promise drooped them again, since promises—in this house—so often are not kept.
But this time I was good to my word; it just took me a while. Yesterday—one of those sunny February days that convinces you winter has fled—I put on my walking shoes, put Abbe in the car, and drove to Hovander park, 15 minutes north of Bellingham. Here Abbe can run off leash, and I can look up to remember where I am.
This is where I am. And this is what I can remember, even when my life seems to close in, to become dim and gritty. I can take off the blinders anytime I want (they're not glued to my head, after all, and I'm the one who put them there in the first place!)
|(photo by Nancy Canyon)|
This is what Abbe looks like at Hovander Park, one of her favorite places in the world. She smiles with her whole body. Her coat gleams. She stands on the trail, head up, nose sniffing the air, then gallops across the field in pursuit of something invisible.
There's always the siren call of the to-do list, the whine of the oppressed self who chooses crankiness over walking shoes, depression over a breath of fresh air. But for me, everything really can change in an instant, with that slight nod of the head toward the sky.