This morning, I went for my first walk in the woods since June. The Broken Foot of ’09 kept me sidelined all summer. I knew that I missed the methodical, non-dangerous way that I walk; movement that allows my mind to think and expand while my body easily does its thing. I knew that I missed all of the writing that I do in my head while I walk – this morning I wrote two blog posts and came up with my next personal writing project (since fully embracing my alignment with non-fiction).
What I didn’t realize that I missed was watching and vibing off of Silas. Let me start by saying that he’s not a normal dog, I think he has magical powers (see image above). He is a yellow lab, but he’s a field lab which makes him long and lean, perfectly compact. He has angel wings, almost white in his sand-yellow fur, on both shoulder blades. His ears don’t match, hanging non-symmetrically off his head. His eyes don’t match, though both are brown, one is opaque, the other clear. If he could, he would spend 24 hours a day with his 75 lbs. on my lap. He’s 6 1/2 now, but he still acts like he’s 1…in a good way. He has boundless energy, infinite adoration.
Impulse & Desire
When we’re out walking, he is magnetically pulled by his impulses. Like a newborn that has no sense of judgment, right or wrong or social doctrines – he follows his passion. He runs when he hears something good. He stops solidly when he catches a scent. He checks on me when I break rhythm. He meanders in the woods. He trots steadily. He sprints. He chases deer. He digs. He falls behind and then he races to catch up to me, sounding like a herd of wildebeests, not like his furry self – eyes bright, tongue lolling out to the side, smile lighting him up.
But none of this wildness is without focus, concentration. He, unbelievably, has a container around his vivacity. As we come to forks in the path, he always chooses the right one – no matter how fast he’s going. When another dog or person comes by us, he is at my side, protecting. If he gets too far, he checks in, pulling in beside me and lifting my palm up with his nose, sliding my hand over the top of his head, then moving on again.
This is what I missed about walking with him. His ability to devoutly follow his impulses and desires, and still maintain his focus. It’s unbridled and it’s safe.
Can I do that? Can you?