Cold out. Cold is below O F. Cold is when you can’t have your mittens or gloves off for any length of time. Cold is when your nose begins to hurt after just a few minutes of being outside. Cold is when you start moving in slow motion. (This is because your blood is starting to thicken.) Cold is when you look at the outer landscape from the inner landscape of your Refigerware suit. Cold is when you say F _ _ _ _ it when your dog runs off.
Yeah, Rainbow ran off today. Here’s how it all shook out. I first took Tinni out for a short jaunt. I put Rainbow on the leash, and brought her along. Jenna, who never runs off, came with us. I let Rainbow off lead when we got to the trailhead. Horses, dogs, and human, all had a good time. The wind had momentarily stopped,
Rainbow crossing overflow
so it was still. No whoosh, whoosh, roar, whoosh. Rather, there was just the occasional snap of a twig or downed branch.
We finally arrived at the second trailhead. I usually put Rainbow back on her leash, but this time forgot to do this. I was thinking about how cold it was, and wondering if I should next ride Signy. Big mistake. I realized this when we got to the Intersection of Oceanview and Murphy Road. Rainbow was to my left, close enough so that she was within hailing distance, but distant enough so that I could not, even if I wanted to, grab her.
I called her when we came to our driveway. And in a manner of speaking, man’s best friend gave me the bird. She raced ahead of me, looked back over her shoulder, and then took off. I called her once, but by then she was heading down-road.
I went up our driveway, and tied Tinni to the hitching post. Then I pen cleaned. There was, during this time, no sign of Rainbow. I next put Tinni away, and then I took Signy and Hrimmi out. I hoped that Rainbow would see us and decide to follow. Once again, as is often the case, hope was an illusory entity. This time out, I was accompanied by one dog, in this case Jenna.
On this walk I thought some about Rainbow, and how every so often she takes off. Now, after 11 years, I concede that she’s never, ever going to have a reliable come. In other words, I will never be able to utter the stay command and expect her to adhere to it.
My imagination goes into overdrive when she runs off. I don’t worry about her jumping in someone’s car, following someone home, or getting nabbed by someone wanting a research canine. Rainbow is far too wily for any of this. She’d never, ever let anyone grab her. I also doubt that she’d get nailed by a car or truck. I also thought some about my contingency plan. If she didn’t return I’d print up and post lost dog fliers everywhere. This, I always think, will take time I don’t have.
I mainly fear that one of my gun toting neighbors (and they all have guns) will shoot her. Today I pictured said individual stopping by the gate and tossing the carcass in the driveway. It’s the stuff bad dreams are made of.
In the past, upon Rainbow’s absence, I’ve become somewhat unhinged and raced around the neighborhood yelling Rainbow’s name. Nothing, of course ever comes of this. Wherever she is, she is, and owner be damned, she’ll come home when she’s good and ready. This time I decided to let sleeping dogs lie and let her return of her own accord. I might have done this because I was usually calm. This morning I did yoga stretches, this included several down dogs. Or I might have done this because I was cold and didn’t feel like expending any more energy than was necessary. (Think about it – if you take in cold air, you have to warm it in order for your body to make use of it. Otherwise, you turn into a block of ice.) This takes considerable energy.
I put Signy and Hrimmi away and took Mr. Siggi for a walk around the loop. Upon my return I saw Rainbow lying down up near the horse pen. When she saw me, her two gold eye dots went up and down several times. I called her name and she bounded over to me. I praised her and told her a lie; this was that she was best dog in the entire world. What else can you do? If I in any way indicated that I was angry or upset, she’d be less inclined to come to me after the next runoff.
As I write this, said dog is sleeping on the living room couch, which she has appropriated. I find it hard to understand why this dog, who leads the best of all possible lives, would ever want to run off. Must be that every so often she has to verify that yes, indeed, this is the place to be.
Next: 360. 12/6/12: A Tale of Whoa