Part of it is habit. I would get up on weekends back in the day. First it was for rowing on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. Later it was for running in the Valley Forge National Park, or to the trails for biking and Inline Skating.
I miss the Skating the most. South Florida with its drivers that aim for anything out there including other cars is not conducive for putting any decent distance on inline skates.
Decent distance for me is 100 miles per week. That is 162 km for the Imperially Impaired.
But the habit continues.
Lately it is a two mile, 3 km dog walk every day, rain or predawn shimmer.
I’m out there with my faithful side kick and shadow, Rack the McNab SuperDog (TM) every morning and we cover practically the entire Wilton Drive. It’s a coping strategy. You see, Rack is quite fearful and having little traffic before 7AM, we’re out there to try to do some distance to keep in shape. It works, but it also serves to allow him to get a taste of what he is afraid of without truly having a major panic attack.
The minor ones will trip you up enough anyway. To get out and explore your own town at a time of morning when there are few others out there truly is a privilege. On the one hand, you get a weird zombie movie or post apocalyptic vibe where there are tumbleweeds rolling down the main drag. It’s dead quiet, and there are only a few people up. You can ignore them.
But there are the changes as you walk along. The skies go from indigo to purple to blue. You get a Subtle Hint Of Mauve, whatever color your eye translates that to be, on everything, and the buildings begin to glow. The flowers begin to pop. Later you hit the golden hour and the world wakes up.
So does the traffic, and that can be a distraction for a fearful medium sized mostly black dog. He gets more insistent to get
Off The Drive and turn back into the neighborhood to head on home. It’s a 45 minute or more wander. Later walks are always longer. You need to take care getting across that street that you didn’t when you left home. People wave, the officers in the patrol car flash their lights or chirp their sirens to say hello, dog walkers emerge.
I am living my own version of the intro to the movie Roxanne as all the sudden I am smiling as a baby Beagle and a Pug are wrapped around my legs begging for attention and Rack is snuffling around the owners looking to be pet.
We’ll end up home soon enough. Herd a few ducks, watch the last clouds turn from golden to white, and ponder whether the rain will come on shore before you get home.
Another dog walk at sunrise ends with the cool of the living room.
Hello! I’m home! What’s for Breakfast?