I had no choice really, but to take the longer trail, to circle the neighborhood.
The trail, bordered by tall fences on one side and trees the other. I’d have turned back sooner, the halfway mark; but, I heard it from behind and turned to notice.
A big dog, head down and a deep rumbling sound echoing from his gut, I looked quickly, then continued forward to feel safe again. Years ago, a dog bolted out, barking loudly and chased until showing its teeth by my side. I was bitten by a German Shepherd.
So, I’m cautious. Calm, but cautious.
Turned back, walking steady, the huge dog smaller because of my distance, the bottoms of my feet barely grazing asphalt as we topped the steep, shaded hill.
Reached the trail and we’re good now.I would have been less brave before; but, I’m moving forward more often now.
Not towards a safe place, simply safer feeling in my places.
On the straightaway now, I notice the sunshine making dappling shapes on the ground as I go.
I decide to slow a little, loosen up the hold and Colt weaves in and out of the low hanging limbs. He stops to seek out noise, a squirrel, a bird or a rabbit rustling ’round.
He’s calm. He’s intent and watchful, so I watch as well.
I wait. He watches. We rest.
Then, walk again with new ease.
To reach the shaded spot next to the back porch where the hydrangeas are so full this year they’ve begun to drag the ground.
Home, we’re back and the sun is shining now, the hydrangeas illumined and resting in beds of brilliant green pillow.