Okay, technically it’s summer for a few more weeks, and I suppose Labour Day weekend is the real last Sunday of summer vacation… but September starts this week, my kids go back to school tomorrow, so as far as I’m concerned, today was it.
We had two dogs this weekend; my best friend lent us her black lab-cross to play Sirius Black at a Harry Potter sleepover. I don’t know if it’s my life-long insomnia, or the discomfort of a big black dog spread across the bed, but I couldn’t sleep in on this last free Sunday. (Our Best Friend is not allowed on our bed, and never has been. Blackie, on the other hand, has slept with me ever since we first started babysitting her from time to time about five years ago. I can’t tell her “No” now.) So, with the temperature already 70 degrees (21 Celsius) at 7:30 a.m., I took two dogs to the park.
Well, everyone else managed to sleep in; the park was empty. One little Westie was running around, joined a few minutes later by a golden retriever. I watched the four dogs wander, white, black, brown, and gold, coming together for a sniff, a wag, or a chase, then going their own ways again. Blackie enjoyed a romp with the golden, though OBF, as usual, stayed aloof. It was beautiful and tranquil. The wind blew through the park, and the temperature was just right in the shade. I chatted a bit with the owner of the golden, and of course Blackie trotted up to get her love fix. (Blackie loves everybody unconditionally– it’s the lab in her.)
The golden and her owner left, the Westie was gone, and a Boston terrier arrived. My bigger dogs made her somewhat nervous, though all three sniffed each other in a friendly way. She came to me for an ear scratch, and I saw she was elderly, with a cataract in one eye. I got up to leave, and she just stood there, a little shaky, blindly searching for her owner who had wandered off and left her behind. I watched as I walked towards the gate, hoping he’d turn around and come back to reassure her. After all, they had the park to themselves now: a calm start to a beautiful last day of summer.