Friday, August 31, 2007

A Dog's World [CCR]

One would never imagine walking the dog would bring such interesting thoughts. But in the early morning dew your mind is left to wander while the dog hops and skips through the grass chasing butterflies and grasshoppers. I looked down at our Miniature Schnauzer and speculate how the world looks through a dog’s eyes. For some dogs it may be dismal, but for this little dog it should be rosy.

The movers are coming this week and the house is now in disarray as we sort through what precious belongings travel with us while the remainder is relegated to the large tractor-trailer. Wednesday and Thursday our house will be overcome with packers who will box everything that is standing still, so I tell the dog to keep walking. Friday we load the truck, and if all goes well, Saturday we drive to Tennessee. It’s Labor Day weekend so we should have a couple of days to relax since we don’t move into the new house until the next weekend. We should be stuck at the hotel, but not me. I have plans.

On Monday I hope to drive down home to visit the Labor Day celebration at the Coon Dog Cemetery. I haven’t been to the big event since I left home in 1988. There amongst those ancient woods are buried some of the happiest dogs known to man. They spent their entire life hunting the raccoon, a nocturnal animal known to give a hound a run for his money.

I’m sure the cemetery will be bustling with various people I remember from years ago along with new faces I haven’t seen. A fair share of politicians will be present to make known their stand and request for your vote. But most of all there will be festivity and music. We will be celebrating both the working man who built this country and the working dog who gave the working man something to think about other than his troubles. What could be more American?

If all goes well with the movers, who seem to always miss their estimate, you should be able to find me among the crowd. I’ll have my digital camera recording memories for my children and I’ll have a few tales to share. The boys and I will make the walk down to the spring and show them what once seemed a steep hill climb back leaving you wishing for another cool drink of water.

For most city folk the festivities may have little or no meaning. But for the folks back home it is an annual event sharing the significance of many hometown celebrations. But if you leave your mind open, as you walk through those hallowed grounds, you too may see the world through a dog’s eyes. You’ll hear the rustle of the leaves and feel the air pumping through your lungs as you trace the scent of your catch to that old hollow tree and be rewarded for your efforts. Along with your comrades you will announce your arrival to the critter in the tree, offering him the chance to surrender or be taken.

If you have a little extra time on Labor Day make your way out to Freedom Hills. Roll down the windows and listen for the music or follow the signs guiding the way to the Coon Dog Cemetery. Your reward will far exceed your efforts. And if you see me wandering around come on over, shake hands, and share a story.