Yesterday, I set the boys free.
As so often is the case, that which rarely happens goes ahead and happens right at the worst time. Hours without a vehicle passing our campsite and within a few minutes of letting Reggie and Roger loose, here comes a pick-up truck!
Roger takes the lead, racing and barking. Reggie is right behind him. The two protectors of our home attack the truck menace.
Oh, dear, my little dynamos next to those big wheels!
There go the boys, chasing the truck down the hill, dust flying to match their canine outrage. How dare a truck go by our home!
Finally, the chasing chihuahuas give up. Reggie, merely a speck in the distance, turns and looks toward home. When he does, I step out of his view.
After a few, very long, heart-in-my-throat moments, I rejoice at the sight of my two sweeties running toward home, full out.
Running out of energy but running free!
Recently blogorinos talked about risk.
Risk and the fear that follows is a topic that pops up periodically in the comments section of this blog. Usually the conversation encircles the risks associated with the boondocking lifestyle, but also about risks in general.
The risks to persons and pets are real:
Engines break down in the middle of nowhere, tires go flat, coyotes hunt, snakes bite, bears attack, scorpions hide in shoes, predatory people seek their prey, rocks trip, cholla cacti inflict pain and maybe infection, propane heaters malfunction, roads become impassable with no place to turn around, limbs fall from the cottonwood tree onto the rig, lightning shoots down from the sky, and so on and so on.
The risk of any of these things happening on any given day vary and their probability is very low, but the possibility exists. We hesitate, consider the risk, and either we succumb to fear or we kick it to the curb. Of course, often there are steps we can take to minimize risk.
But, ooh, that fear . . .
Poised to pounce and decimate our dreams.
Every day, mostly unconsciously, we weigh risks, determine if they are real or imagined, and decide whether to take them on or to shirk them.
Yesterday I watch the crew and wonder.
Whenever we go outside, Reggie and Roger wear their harnesses connected to short leashes or they’re hooked to a 30-foot tether. Although the crew is happy to be walked on leashes or on the tether, they are restricted in what they can do.
There are times when I sense Reggie or Roger wish they could be free. I watch them walk to the end of the tether, curious to explore a sight or scent, and then they reach the end and can go no further.
I hate that!
Often on this blog I write about living life fully. Shouldn’t Reggie and Roger be allowed to live life fully also?
Oh, but the risk!
Yeah, the risk. They could be hurt and I could be hurt by them being hurt.
I guess what we have to do in order to live life fully and to give the same to those in our charge is find the best balance of safety and risk, the balance that suits us in our circumstances. This will be different for everyone.
There are risks, yes, and there are joys.
I want Reggie and Roger to live “fully dog.”
As much as I dare to allow . . . .
I will try to keep them from harm while remembering that sometimes, when the situation is right, it’s okay to place a finger on the scale, pressing slightly on the side of risk . . .
Just for the fun and freedom and joy of it.
I don’t want anyone to get the impression that I’m going to let the crew run loose anywhere, anytime. Our present camp is, for the most part, isolated from human distraction. Wildlife is scarce in this part of the refuge, probably because vegetation is limited mostly to pale tan grass and mesquite.
The site is very large, flat, and perfect for running and playing. Yes, there is tall grass that tempts Reggie and Roger to wander off exploring. I’m using those instances when they stray too far or go where there’s increased risk to train them. They are learning to return at my call, although, at this point, it’s two steps forward, one giant leap backward for caninekind.
Another point: It’s easy for me to say “Live life fully!” when I have good health, mobility, state of mind, and resources. I didn’t write this post to encourage people to “throw caution to the wind,” but to think about making the most out of life, whatever the personal circumstances and limitations may be. I’m interested in reading what you have to say about living a fulfilling life.
Today is Valentine’s Day!
To each of my readers I say thank you and send you my love. I’m going to try to stay out of comments, hoping you will feel welcome in our “family room” and enjoy listening and talking with each other. — Sue
THANK YOU FOR VISITING MY BLOG!
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