Friday, February 24, 2017

Walking by woods on a snowy morning

A foot of snow fell overnight last night, so our morning run turned into a slow, plodding walk. While we were out, daylight spread over everything, and I turned off my headlamp. All kinds of short-coated dogs, whom we never see when it's colder, were out and about. Also, the school bus had apparently been delayed by an hour (in a ditch?), so Starbuck and I visited with the neighborhood kids, who were standing around their driveways trying to decide how long to wait.

We visited with a pair of little boys whom we had not seen in a while.

Do you remember us? I'm Arvay, and this is Starbuck!

"Yeah, you used to run by every day."

Yeah, you haven't seen us in a while since our older dogs couldn't walk that far. But they've both passed away, so it's just Starbuck and me taking long walks again.

"Where are they?"

They passed away... They... uhhh... they're in Doggie Heaven. They were seventeen years old.

"WWWHOOOOAAAA! Wow! That's awesome!"


"I wish dogs lived longer. Dogs don't live long enough."

I agreed that they didn't.

"Dogs are COOL."

I agreed again.

"Cats are meeehhh."

I laughed.

I don't like cats much, either. Do you still have your golden retriever, Ann?

"Yeah! She's 11! Her birthday was yesterday!"

Starbuck's was last month! She's 10.

"Starbuck and Ann are going to live a LONG TIME. Just like your other dogs."

I agreed.

In total, we met 5 kids, 7 dogs, two of whom tried to follow us home, and 2 yearling meese, who by appearances had only recently left their mother, but were sticking together. We only saw 5 adults, and didn't speak--they waved from their cars. It occurred to me that Fairbanks is a great place if you want to try your hand at being a hermit, but don't want to commit to 100% solitude. Sometimes when you think you are sick of people, you are really just sick of adult meaningless chatter. Try kids, dogs, and meese!

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