This past year has revealed plenty about what we really value in life, so I’m just gonna come right out and say what has me in its mighty grip. Love. I am head over heels, hopelessly, happily, and entirely in love with our dog Rosie.
I certainly cared for her prior to the social gutting of our lifestyle, but this is next level love. Our days revolve around her walks and well-being. At night, we cuddle together on the couch and we talk to her constantly in our funny dog-talking voices. Any dog owner knows what that means. I’m pretty sure we all adopt a sort of cartoony voice when talking to pets. It’s become one of my favourite things to hear, especially when it’s coming from a big gruff dude.
And if you have a dog in your life, there’s really no better place to live than Wakefield, with its fantastic trails and river access. I reckon that dog people easily made up 80 per cent of my non-spousal human contact this last year. (Dog ‘owner’ sounds too hierarchical and I’m not certain who actually owns who). Dog people generally know each other by our dog’s names. I’m Rosie’s daddy, just like ‘buddy’, whom I see every few days on the trails, is Bubba’s daddy. I actually know his name, but that’s not important when you’re as dog-crazed as I’ve become.
And I can’t recall ever being in such good shape thanks to Rosie’s extreme exercise needs. She’s one of the many Australian Shepherds the village is filling up with and, for a time, I was resigned to buying 30 sheep for her. Farm dogs need jobs or they go cuckoo-for-cocoa-puffs, so I’ve made up for the lack of livestock by marching all over hell’s half acre regardless of the weather. I think now I know the trails and forests around here better than I’d ever imagined I would. I’ve blazed a few myself, especially in winter when the snow pack is hard and the possibilities are endless.
Does all this make me a better person? I say yes! I’ve cuddled that furry creature so much my heart could burst. When we’re allowed to hug humans again, I will be ready. I’ve stared deep into the eyes of unconditional love and learned that love is all empowering and the true guide to fulfillment.
Thank you Rosie, my sage, my angel, my sweet Baboo.
Luther Wright has his masters degree in House Husbandry and lives in Wakefield.