My great nephew, who is the joy of my life and has been since the day he first drew breath, is graduating from college tomorrow. He’s getting an award today so I’m waiting for the live stream to start. I’ll probably cry. I can’t imagine how the baby boy who wouldn’t stay with anyone but Auntie, who took every candle off my bookshelves and made caravans across the floor, who had to eat a fudgsicle whenever he visited, has grown into such a wonderful young man. I’m sure it’s totally because he takes after his great aunt. 🙂
We are very far apart in age and yet we have long conversations, sometimes late at night, about all sorts of things. He is the child of my heart, as is his brother (who’s studying to be a doctor, yeah, proud Auntie here)
So I’m sitting here waiting for the ceremony to start and tomorrow I will watch graduation as well, and probably cry for that one too.
I took Maverick for his walk this morning at the little park because he no longer is interested in walking further than it takes to poop and be done with it. The little park is only 1/2 mile around so I take him back home and go to the big park and walk my miles without him dragging me around – yes, loose leash walking is a work in process. Maverick is not a fan of meeting other dogs while on leash. He is especially not fond of dogs on flexi – leads. (I believe he’s gotten part of that from me, because those things were created by Satan) (Shutty, Maxwell) He also is not a fan of people who wear masks at the park, and I’m totally with him on that one. (I whisper as they pass, “curses on your cooties!”)
Owning a dog reactive dog is a learning experience. My first Golden loved every dog and every person he met. Maverick is far more selective. There are a few trusted friends we can pass at the park with nothing more than polite interest. There are a few that send us as far off the path as we can manage, and a few more that I actively get in front of and block Maverick’s view. I ALWAYS warn people to stay away. “Please don’t come close, he isn’t a fan of other dogs” is my go-to comment. I say this loudly and clearly. This does NOT in any way translate to “Please come over closer and make me say it again.” Today at the little park, I saw a man and woman approaching with a chocolate Lab. She’s a nice dog, Max played with her a few times at that park. Her owners are elderly. The gentleman walks the dog – on a flexi-lead – and has no control of her. I know this because I’ve interacted with this couple more than once.
Maverick and I headed to the field. I wear earbuds and listen to a book while walking. It keeps me sane during the endless sniff fests that Maverick enjoys. They’re wireless and I keep the loop in front because if I loop them around my neck, it annoys me and gives me a funny line in the middle of the tan my necks gets every summer. (Yup, right now I’m truly a redneck, I got the sunburn going on!) The old couple stopped on the path and looked over at us, and started in our direction. Lucy, the dog, was pulling at the end of the flexi-lead. (So she was about 800 feet out in front of the old guy) I pulled one earbud out and said, “Don’t come closer, please.” I’m polite, it’s how I was raised. The lady started towards us, saying, “what?” I moved further away saying “Please don’t come closer, he doesn’t like other dogs.” At this point Maverick was barking and pulling and generally being an idiot.
Again she says, “What?” I pulled out the other earbud. “DON’T COME ANY CLOSER!” Finally it sank in. She shooed her husband on down the path and decided that SHE would come over. “HE’LL KNOCK YOU DOWN!” I said, as I’m trying to move him along in the other direction.
Finally, we were back on the path. They were moving the other way and no harm done other than me being annoyed. I reached down to my neck to put my earbuds back in and they were gone. I searched through my clothes, thinking they had fallen and were hanging off my bra or something. Nope, they were gone.
They were not the most expensive of earbuds but they weren’t cheap either. I was pissed. Trying to search for them in the grass with Maverick pulling on me was an exercise in futility. I took him back to the car and walked back to the spot where we had gone off the path. I searched the grass, nothing. After going back and forth several times, I gave up, in tears, and headed back to the car. “Please show me where they are, ” I said, as I walked on. Lying on the path half way around were my earbuds.
A happy ending. And still I wonder why people just don’t listen. Not every dog is friendly. Not every person is friendly. If someone is moving away from you, don’t move closer to them.
Is that really so hard?
Meanwhile, Alex is making me proud and that’s a good thing today