My two point five grandson lives with me; that means my adult daughter also lives with me (a typical millennial situation: limited funds etc.). I am retired. Almost every morning and evening, Leo and I have the routine of walking the dog, a 10-year old, one-eyed Boston Terrier who acts like the energizer bunny. Last night, the walk was heavily interrupted with stops and I was eaten alive by mosquitoes. I complained to my daughter about the slow going. She said I was exaggerating.
This morning, I counted the stops. That’s right, 36 stops to get around a block and a half, whether it was for Rocky or Leo, it was a trial in patience and discovery.
Why do we stop? Naturally, for Rocky, it’s marking the way, sniffing the previous four-legged travelers, and ultimately finding the perfect spot to dump. Unfortunately, he seems to have a bad stomach today and there were stops to chew on grass as well.
Leo, on the other hand, had a much broader variety of reasons to halt progress: pick up sticks; find large rocks and try to lift them; find small rocks and toss them; find extra long grass and yank it; visit neighbor’s urban chickens (meet human owners who reveal the chicken names: Batman, Chickie, and PacMan; jump over one-inch breaks in sidewalk, wait at street and/or alley crosswalks; walk six times back and forth on yellow street barrier leftover from the 4th of July parade (hello, public works?); watch a squirrel climb a tree; examine black rubber thingy on the sidewalk; watch a cat that watches us; venture up other people’s sidewalks; review letters on a political yard sign; sit in the dew-laden grass just because he can; stand under a crape myrtle waiting for “Bibi” to shake the flowers and water droplets onto his head; look for the dog Skipper who lives in the little white house (not available apparently today); stand and then jump off a water/sewer contraption in someone’s yard (daily); walk the bottom step of a duplex and consider making a big jump (not yet); climb over wooden beams that line a driveway; watch Rocky poop; visit second yard that has 4 chickens; throw magnolia tree leaves into a puddle; and watch the garbage guys pick up our trash.
I wouldn’t miss it for the world. What will tomorrow bring?