my favorite mornings…

today was one of those mornings.

Because it’s winter time, it’s still dark when I get to the park with Aggie. And today was cold. I think the forcaster on the radio said 13; pretty cold for Missouri. Then again, she also said it was overcast – but I only saw a few clouds.

We just had a full moon on the 10th, so it’s just noticably waning and still hangs there like a lamp lighting the path. With just a dusting of snow, it was perfect. Just enough snow to cover the ground and make the “snow squeak” under my boots. Only my cheeks and the tip of my nose really felt the cold; and my fingertips, until they warmed up. At least for the first portion of our walk. About half way around the path turns north again. I planned it so that I was on the more open side when that happened, with a clear view of the moon – I also got a northerly breeze in the face, but not so much that it ruined the moment.

It’s a bit exciting knowing you’re the first person in the park in the morning. Writing it out, it sounds pathetic, but it’s true. When it has snowed during the night, it’s much more obvious that you’re the first crossing the bridge because there are no other footprints. It gives the illusion that you’re the only person in the world… which I very much love… if I could only block out the distant sounds of the city. Even distant, they are still there. It’s still a dream of mine to live where I can’t hear any, any traffic.

Then right before Aggie and I left the park, we met with Doc, Shelby and their person. Matt is often kind enough to bring another dog, Gracie, who belongs to a colleague of his and who is often in the park herself, but can’t make it every morning.

Aggie knows these dogs well. Very well, in fact. I walked with Matt just a little ways because the dogs felt like playing. Aggie doesn’t always do that, so it’s nice for her to use a little more energy and they were all feeling frisky from the chill.

Gracie is just a little bigger than Aggie; maybe 7-10 lbs. She also tends to be a dominant dog. The play between them became a skirmish. A quickie, dominance fight and Aggie surprised me by cowing Gracie. It was done almost before it started, but we still separated them, and Aggie and I left.

I think it surprised Matt as much as me. And I should feel like this, but I wanted to praise Aggie. I was proud of her… that’s terrible, but true.