I had big plans for Sophie and I yesterday morning. We were going to hunt down some lime kiln ruins at a local conservation area and check out the "Hole in the Wall" - a unique section of the Niagara Escarpment. But I woke up Saturday to rain. The kind of rain that has no intention of clearing up later. Not even interesting rain....just drizzle and discontent. So I mentally put aside our plans and began making a list of various house chores that needed to be done....laundry, dusting, etc. Then heard a noise....whump, whump, whump. I turned to see Sophie sitting at the front door, tail wagging and thumping on the hardwood floor.
And here's the thing. Since I started back to work, it means Sophie spends most of her time, Monday to Friday, alone in the house...waiting. Waiting for one of us to come home, waiting for the next adventure, waiting patiently....a very tough task for a Border Collie. But Sophie does it. And she does it without the protest of chewed up shoes or destroyed furniture or a terrorized, shell-shocked cat. In return, I give her the weekends.
So when I looked at her waiting by the front door, I realized that I owed her an adventure, even if it was going to be a soggy one. I'll be honest though...I did not want to go. But I found my waterproof boots, an old raincoat and a baseball hat. I suited up Sophie in her collar. I even threw my camera in my pack...although my mindset was not that of an enthusiastic photographer. And we headed out. I decided to leave my lime kiln plans for another day and I pointed the car in the direction of one our favorite rail trail walks.
As we started our walk, Sophie bounding happily through the trees and I, grimacing and repeating my mantra of "I owe it to the dog", I discovered an amazing thing: Forest rain is different from city rain. It smelled fresh and of the promise of second chances. It clung to branches and leaves, making the trees shimmer and move. And the sound of the drops landing on the earth's floor made me think of small forest creatures, pixies and woodland fairies, dancing to nature's song. And it was, in the end, a beautiful, wondrous walk.
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