Finding “the right place”

My Dad (that’s what I call him – my Dad) shows signs of weariness with the winter.  Here it is, February, almost March (I think) and he is muttering about record low temperatures.  Personally, I don’t mind the cold.  I love to lay in the snow.  But, finding a place, just the right place, can be a problem.  My Dad can tell when I am looking for “the right place.”  My pace quickens, I move off the sidewalk (at least most of the times) onto a patch a vegetation exposed by the sun, or some pine branches.  I have always been very aware that I should move off of the “beaten path” when I choose “the right place.”  The amount of snow on the ground causes difficulty, often GREAT difficulty, in finding the right place.  In spite of my canine-ness, I have a strong sense of decorum and privacy.  Just stopping suddenly on the sidewalk – because I can’t find an appropriate “right place” –  is very disconcerting, even a bit embarrassing.  My Dad still does his thing with the plastic bag, hands me my carry-squeaky toy for the walk home and I know what to do, I know where to go.  I don’t need anyone to tell me, I just know.  Several years ago, my Dad had to run to the grocery store in the morning.  It was very cold, the wind was blowing.  He didn’t take me in the car.  I gave him “the look,” but he said he’d be right back.  So he leaves the apartment and I heard his truck drive off (he was listening to RUSH).  The door to the apartment blew open.  My Dad was gone, the door was open.  I stepped outside, looked around and sat down.  Why go anywhere?  When my Dad returned, he talked and talked and talked to me, praising me, loving me, petting me.  But I knew what to do – what’s the big deal.  I do NOT like the ice that has taken over the sidewalks…my rear legs are not as strong as they used to be.  I do not like falling on the ice.  I will choose a path without ice, and sometimes I end up in snow that is deeper than I can negotiate.  My Dad will tramp through the snow over to me, making a path that I can use to extricate myself…and I continue my search for “the right place.”

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