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Friday, July 17

barkyard morning

Russell takes Quincy to the dog park every morning and evening. He does that because puppies need to run and we want him to be a social dog. I often say I'm too busy in the studio or not awake yet or something. But Russell tells me that the morning at the Barkyard is good for him, too. The facility has been recently moved and upgraded and he says spending the early morning in the park, by the water, cup of tea, dogs playing, owners schmoozing, is good for him, too.

But with "Daddy" busy for the next few mornings, it was my turn to go. I'm not good at leaping out of bed and into the car, so we weren't there as early as normal and I think Q was resigned to missing his play date this morning, but I surprised him.

He gets almost frantic in the car when you get to the 2nd traffic light before the entrance. I'm not sure what he sees that cues him to proximity. You can't see the park. But the water comes into view there and that might be it, because when we drive by water going anywhere he perks up. It may be the Peace Bridge looming or maybe even just the colorful Burger King. But that last quarter mile or so is a test of patience and endurance.

He leans out the window, panting as we pull up and drags me to the gate. Then it is time to unhook the leash and let him go. He runs and wrestles and chases with little rest except for the few times he comes to me and leans against my knees. But then he is off again.

I chat with some of the owners I've come to know and it is peaceful and fun there, even with the frantic dogs flipping each other and yapping.

Today I saw what Russell means. A sailboat drifted slowly along the shore, a beautiful Australian Shepherd ran gracefully along the perimeter, Quincy wrestled with his favorite playmate, a Great Dane, a flock of geese flew overhead. It was ridiculously bucolic for an urban park.

Tomorrow I'll bring my coffee.

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