One morning a couple of weeks ago, I just couldn’t face walking Cosette around the neighborhood again, so I we went to the park. There were several parks to choose from, but I decided to go somewhere new for her, and we went to Two Rivers State Park.
It was around 32 degrees and the wind was blowing, making it feel like 22 degrees. I decided to walk around one of the lakes but questioned my sanity when we stepped out of the car and a wind gust took my breath away. I was wishing I had my scarf, why didn’t I think to wear a scarf? I knit and have several scarfs! Sheesh. Cosette didn’t care at all, but then she has a fur coat. She was excited to be some place new and immediately headed to a trail around the lake. We didn’t cover much land quickly because she could smell the horses that had passed through before and was a little overwhelmed. It took a little while to get into the groove of walking and sniffing.
As we walked, the wind stopped being a hindrance and became an enhancement. The quiet around us was interrupted by the sound of wind cutting through the bare limbs and ruffling the leftover leaves still clinging to stay on. Cosette skipped along, happy in the great outdoors and reveling in all the smells. I felt warmer, maybe from the activity of walking or maybe from the comfort of walking my dog on a crisp Fall morning, anticipating family coming for Thanksgiving and the warmth of a busy kitchen.
Whatever the reason, we were having a grand time. Cosette barked at tall weeds that were moving in the wind. It must be alive! Therefore, she must bark and run away, then cautiously walk towards them until they move again, then bark and run away. With one final huff, we moved on to a new spot in the park.
During the summer, this park is pretty full, but today it was as if it was our private play ground. We walked towards the shoreline of the river because being a hound, Cosette must sniff the brambles and edges for critters. We walked along, then in unison looked up into the trees ahead of us. A trail! We both ran for it and into the small forest. The trail quickly became covered with leaves and was indistinguishable but that didn’t stop Cosette from hoping over downed limbs and zig zagging through the trees. I stopped, wondering if they allowed deer hunting in this park. It was around 7:30 in the morning during deer season and I was walking with a hyper dog in a wooded area without a reflector vest on either of us. Just to be safe, I steered us back to the entrance. Of course, I couldn’t find that trail, but we hadn’t gone that far and Cosette knew how to get out. Or at least she acted like she did.
We walked around a little more then headed back to the car. Neither one of us was ready to leave, really, but hunger was a stronger instinct at that point than the need to be outdoors. As we drove home, the dog who whined most of the way to the park was silent in the backseat. She stared out the window for awhile, then curled up on the seat and sighed the most satisfying sigh I’ve ever heard. And so did I.