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June 17, 2018: A Conversation with Ryder

The following conversation is a composite, bits and pieces of conversations that took place with Ryder on the Maud – Plumly Road Trail Ride, the Government Peak Trail Ride, and today, on the Grizzly Camp Bench Trail Ride.

Alys: (Today, at Grizzly Camp) Ryder, why are you obsessing about the squirrel in that tree?
Ryder: Because.
A: Because why?
R: I don’t have a reason. I’m here, the squirrel is up there. See? Take a look.
A: It isn’t going anywhere.
R: That’s right.
A: How come you aren’t obsessed with catching mice?

Ryder has had enough

R: Mice are inconsequential.
A: And squirrels are consequential?
R: Yes.
A: Ever caught one?
R: No.
A: And what would you do if you did catch a squirrel?
R: I’d let it go and tree it.
A: You mean you would not eat it?
R: Absolutely not. I stalk. I chase. I do not kill. I do not eat.
A: Rainbow used to do all this.
R: That’s right.
A: You also roll in dead things.
R: That’s correct.
A: Why do dogs roll in dead things?
R: Why do cats go for catnip?
A: You have no answer to my question?
R: No. You are shit out of luck.
A: Well, how are you holding up these days?
R: I’m doing okay.
A: Have you given up on the idea of turning us over to the human society?
R: The subject is still very much on my mind.
A: Why is that?
R: Because what I was told might come to be, has come to be.
A: What’s that?
R: What’s happened to me is what every Border collie fears.
A: What’s that?
R: I unfortunately got owners who over exercise me. I mean, come off it. Today we did six miles. And over half were uphill.
A: But there were water stops.
R: That’s true.
A: And you had your Australian friend Jack to run around with.
R: Jack – you know he is really fed up with this riding horseback and bringing dogs along trip.
A: Is that so?
R: Yes, he told me that he tried to put an end to it by running back home.
A: But he doesn’t do that when you come along.
R: Yes, because he then has someone to complain to.
A: And that someone is?
R: Me!
A: You seem to be handling it all very well.
R: I wish he’d come over here and watch this squirrel. I need to take a break.
A: And what would you do on your break?
R: I would go over and check out that fire pit. Sometimes they have meat scraps in them. Rainbow once told me that she found a turkey leg in one of those pits. Imagine that, a turkey leg!
A: Do you do anything that is not reprehensible?
R: I keep an eye on the horses.
A: And they keep an eye on you.
R: That’s right. You know, that brown and white one was the one who kicked me.
A: Yes, I know this.
R: But we are buddies now.
A: And I suppose she wants to turn Pete into the Human Society.
R: Yep.
A: And I suppose that the red one wants to turn me into the Human Society.
R: Nope.
A: Is this because she loves me?
R: No. It is because you feed her. Stop feeding her and you will spend the rest of your days in a shelter.
A: Is that a threat?
R: Just an observation. Excuse me, can we talk more later? Jack has found something meat like in the campfire and I really need to check it out.
A: Another time, perhaps.
R: Yes, another time, perhaps.

Next: 169. 6/18/18: Two Days

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