Low: -4° F
High: 11° F
Conditions: Blizzard conditions with gusting wind and snow accumulation of 15 inches or higher.
The solstice hike is one of our family’s favorite traditions. We wake up first thing in the morning; the humans bundle up and stuff their pockets with dog biscuits; and then the three of us head out for an epic hike. Along the way, we see moose and birds and eat snacks. Then we stop for breakfast, and the resting canine naturalist gets the bacon from one of the human’s plate.
It’s an all-around great day. One of our collective favorites on the calendar, really.
So what do you do if you’re a dog looking forward to a solstice walk who is then disappointed when one of her stupid humans falls down a mountain a few days before?
You sulk a little. And you sigh deeply each of the million times you have to listen to her recount the fall—the death cookie she’s sure her ski hit (after all, she wouldn’t just fall, right?). You hear her talk about the daring tumble—about how it would have been a complete yard sale if her right ski hadn’t stayed on her right foot. About how said ski was responsible for bending her leg in a hundred different directions, none of which nature intended.
You sigh some more. You look at the front door longingly. You get bored and chase the cats around the house.
And then you settle for a consolation walk.
The other human—the less clumsy one—agrees to be your walker. This is unusual. And irritating, since he insists on eating an orange and everyone knows you hate the smell of citrus. Meanwhile, your human—the gimpy one—tries to make do with a knee-brace, ski poles, and a lot of Advil. You can see that glazed, ibuprofen look in her eyes. And you don’t like it. But you walk anyway, and pretend not to laugh because she looks like a goof. And really, it’s not all bad.
The hike is more of a shuffle, but it is awfully pretty.
And you get to growl at mallards.
And, okay, you even see a bald eagle.
And even in your crabby state, you have to admit that’s pretty impressive—especially today, which is the solstice after all. And even though there’s no bacon for you, there are biscuits. And they are homemade. And the humans are smiling—even the gimpy one—so you decide, okay maybe, you’ll have a good day, too.
And so you do.