Friday, December 14, 2007

Whimsy Trail

It's cold. Very cold. And there are inches upon inches of snow on the ground, a nice new fluffy top coat which sings in crystalline voices as I move through it, and a hard crunchy layer under that which seems firm when I put my foot on it but cracks like egg shells under my full weight. I do not own boots so my feet are constantly wet, but my cap, gloves and coat (a $30 number I picked up from Old Navy several years ago which I swear could get me to the top of Everest) are wonderful. I did not want to walk tonight, had almost talked myself into it, but once I got home and was met by my dancing, singing dog I knew I could not help but walk.

The trail we blazed the other night is still strong and visible through the inches accumulated last night and all day today. It is the strongest trail in the park and has been trod upon many times. Tonight I decided to leave it and start a new one. Midway across the field we took a sharp left, breaking open the unblemished snow and wandered back toward Pierce, looping through several trees, turning in a wide circle followed by a smaller one. We zigged, heading toward the baseball diamonds, then zagged abruptly back toward the lower soccer field, first meandering around each of the trees in front of us, a loose weave back and forth between the trunks. Crossing the sidewalk my plunged into deeper snow on the hill where we cut tight and unnecessary switchbacks down its gentle slope. From there we ran in figure eights across the length of the field, up another hill, plowed a line across the side of it, slipped down toward the willow, back up and across the sidewalk to our starting point.

As much as I hate the snow and cold it was nice to create a trail that only a dog could understand. I turned and looked over my shoulder at the single heavy line, our signature, amid all that white. No one will follow it, but wouldn't it be fun to know what they thought if they did?

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