Sunday, April 12, 2015

Phoenix 2015 - Think Like a Dog

Saturday, being in retail the word means little to me. At one time it was the day one wanted to work as good sales were almost guaranteed, but those days, alas, are behind us. To me, in my world, it is generally just another day. To much of the rest of the world, however, it is the beginning of those 2 days of freedom from the responsibilities of a job that having the responsibilities of a job allows them to earn. Chores are accomplished, hobbies are indulged in, small out of town trips are planed. And so I found myself on a Saturday mid morning out in the bright desert sun chatting with my friend as he walks their dog.

As we stroll through the neighborhood streets I recalled an authority on dog training on a talk show discussing, appropriately, how to train a dog. His advise was that the owner think like one. This dog, on a retractable leash, is ahead of us, my friend second, I am lagging further behind enjoying the March warmth, as well as the varieties of plants and birds I rarely get to experience. Earlier that morning I watched as a line of quail, their distinctive head feathers bobbing, walked in a line along the garden wall looking as if they were participating in a parade. The dog sniffs plants and rocks, on occasion the curb or sidewalk. I attempt to think like a dog. It is to no avail. I cannot, for the life of me, ascertain what it is that intrigues her. She seems to inhabit a world of perpetual surprise. At home our cat appears to plot her moves, each of her activities and actions requiring extensive amounts of planning. By contrast the dog seems to live in the moment.

Arriving at a small park she is allowed off her leash. She takes off running in large circles at a breakneck pace. She lopes over to us, as if saying "Look what I can do"  then takes off again. She exhibits a carefree, childlike glee. As we get to the house she is allowed off her leash again. Eschewing the more direct route to the house along the small arroyo like tumble of rocks in the front yard she opts for a more indirect, civilized route. She trots up the driveway then up the path from the driveway the leads to the front door.

I try to think like a dog. I achieve little success.

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