Thursday, October 12, 2006

The fall of autumn

What happened to fall? It was apparent on our walk this morning that we skipped a season, going from a summery 70-plus degree weekend followed by this cold, below-freezing Thursday morning.

Early dog walks make the changes in season apparent. That's an obvious statement, I suppose, because, rather than being in bed, I'm outside in whatever elements the day has to offer. I often think I've gotten off easy so far … I could still count on probably less than ten fingers the number of times we've had to take a morning walk in the pouring rain. It did happen early this week though. Not a problem. I have excellent rain gear and Diesel is water-resilient. A quick, playful once-over with a towel and the boy is good as new. The only thing that will delay us is lightning, which also happened earlier this month.

Mid-September, seemingly out of no where, we were forced to grow accustomed to 6 a.m. walks in the pitch dark. It was time to pull out the reflective vest and flashing red bicycle light to protect ourselves from the bleary-eyed drivers making their way to work at 6:15 a.m. How early do *they* need to get up to walk their dogs? I can't imagine. Now we're settling in to the cold. Next comes the fluffy white stuff and we're reminiscent of last January when early morning dog walks with a brand new dog were a novelty indeed. How novel will they be this coming up January when we awake to 10°F and there's a layer of gray snow on the ground?

No matter. As I was walking this morning, experiencing the season's first truly cold morning with an ever-optimistic beagle at the other end of the leash, I couldn't imagine going back to waking up, making coffee, and immediately hopping in the shower. I haven't hit the snooze button once in over ten months and I don't miss it a bit. Breathing in fresh morning air has become the best part of my routine. Well, that, and the coffee.

But even coffee and fresh air don't top that first full-body wag of the day from my little dog fellow.


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