This is a picture of my girls, Nity and Metta. Two critters I’ve adopted since moving to the island of Cozumel back in March. Don’t they look sweet? But, don’t let the calm pose fool you, they are both quite insistent about many things, and today I’m going to talk about one of their demands, the morning walk.
They start this particular ritual around 5:00, which is when I am awakened by a Dachshund’s nose and a Doberman’s tongue, both on my face. As soon as I get out of bed they start to show me just how serious they are by running in and out of the bedroom through the tiny kitchen, into the living room until they are right at the front door. This is where one can see the differences in their personalities. Nity just runs full out and has crashed into the inside screen door so many times that it needs replaced, again. However, Metta does a combination of hopping and running, but in a circular motion all the way out and back, kind of a little dance of joy. Now, just in case I don’t “get it,” they will do this five or six more times while I struggle into something that makes me hope no-one else will see us. I’m not good with anything before a cup of coffee, but, as history has taught me, they simply will not allow for that indulgence. Then I brush my teeth, spray on some bug stuff, grab a plastic bag and off we go although how they have any energy left by this time is anyone’s guess. Lord knows I don’t.
Metta, the Dachshund, has to be carried down the steps from my apartment. This has now become quite tricky since the landlord’s puppy, Pasita, has learned how to climb the stairs and she likes to sleep on the top one. So we compete with each other all the way down, the non-caffeinated woman with the chubby dog in her arms and the Pug pup who just wants to play. I shudder to think of the possibilities. Nity, of course, doesn’t wait for anyone, she just flies down the stairs, pees in the center of the courtyard, and then anxiously paces by the front gate. Leashes are put on, the gate is opened, and the next few moments are a test of both patience and flexibility. Two dogs on leashes competing with one puppy unchained to see who goes and who stays.
Once out the gate we head across the street to the Corpus Christi church and then walk alongside it to the park in front. We cross the street and, if the coast is clear of other dogs, I take them off the leash and they use their energies in better ways. This is also when I get to relax a bit since they do stay close to me and I have the supplies necessary to be responsible. Now, if there is another dog, the only thing I tend to worry about is the human involved. My guys get along with all other furry creatures, but try telling that to the other pet owners, which brings me to today. You see, my dogs let me sleep in a bit, all the way to 7:00, and I was happy, but not for long.
There is a woman who walks her Toy Chihuahua (can I mention that I think that breed title is redundant) in the park as well. I know to keep an eye out for her, but can never be sure because her times vary and she moves in and around the trees quickly. If I don’t happen to see her and let Nity loose, my dog will run up to say hello, but that poor woman will grab up her pup and freeze in fear. No amount of reassurance helps, so I try and keep an eye out for her. Today, unfortunately, I didn’t see her in time. But, I gathered up my girl, apologized profusely, and put Nity and Metta back on their leashes until she was gone.
The coast was clear so I let them off again, but that only lasted for a moment until along comes a woman with four small dogs, including a Beagle that can howl so convincingly that you are positive someone just got killed and he’s in mourning. Again I leash my pups, exchange a “good morning” and off we go. But, then there was the man with the French Bulldog, and the guy with his Pomeranian, another was walking an attractive mutt, and still another had a Dachshund. It was a fiesta, but not the good kind. You see, at 7:00 in the morning, these folks all knew each other and their dogs, me and mine were the newbies. I leashed my guys again, but this time Nity was so enthused about the potential playmates that she broke her newest collar. It was her third, since she has this habit of stopping, looking, and then making a snap decision (pun intended) about her destination and her collars, so far, have not been able to withstand the pressure. How I still have a shoulder in its socket is another mystery altogether.
So, there I am, trying to make a leash do two jobs, while struggling in between a Pomeranian, a Dachshund, and a French Bulldog all trying to get to know each other. While this might have been laughable under other circumstances, this was not one of them. In other words, the other owners didn’t seem amused so my decision to end our morning “walk” was made. As I hauled away my guys I glanced back to wonder how the others had gotten to that point where they could just stand and chat amiably while their dogs remained calmly at their sides whether on leashes, or not. In fact, once I really looked at them I noticed that they were all dressed fairly well, not a mismatched outfit was to be seen. Besides that, it looked like they’d all taken the time to take a shower and comb their hair. In other words, they appeared ready for the entire day. Me? Well, let’s just say that I shouldn’t have left the house.
On the way home I realized that my dreams of sleeping in were not to be. There are too many advantages to getting up at the crack of dawn. My dogs are happier when they can roam a little bit and can poke and sniff anywhere they please. The birds are joyful, the ambiance is peaceful, and it’s just too early to worry about much, especially how I look. Yes, I think we’ll stick with the 5:00 crowd. Besides, my coffee tastes better because it’s been well earned. Salud!
p.s. this is Carmella and the Pug pup, Pasita…………pics after coffee really are better