Yesterday was quite mild so instead of going for my usual walk with the dogs at the dog park, middle child and I decided to visit Bayfront Park.
The weather has been up and down lately, cold, warm, snow, rain, etc., you really never know what to wear when you leave the house. However this past Tuesday, the weather was warm enough that I decided to wear my running shoes to the dog park. Now when I say warm enough, I mean around 1° Celsius, 34° Fahrenheit for my American followers, Canadians will leave the hat and mittens at home, put on the running shoes instead of winter boots, and leave our coat zipper down. The ground was still frozen, so I wasn’t worried about muddy shoes or paws.
The dogs were running here and there, well Cocoa was mostly walking beside me, until he would see another dog that he decided was a threat to Bear. Cocoa is Bear’s bodyguard, which is quite funny, being that Cocoa is half the size of him, and certainly cannot run anywhere near as fast as Bear can. Cocoa also doesn’t really understand Bear play fighting with other dogs, he thinks Bear is being hurt, so he is right there to defend him.
We rarely take more than two walks around the entire dog park because of Cocoa’s arthritis, and of course mine. Lately we haven’t been doing the usual circle because this leash free dog park is prone to flooding, so there is a lot of water on the ground after the snow melts. Then of course the ground freezes again, leaving ice everywhere. On this particular day, I saw the dogs running across the ice so I figured it would hold me too. Ha! (Afterthought: the combined weight of Bear and Cocoa is less than what I weigh).
I put my one foot on the ice, it holds, I put my other foot on the ice, and then I start to hear the cracks. (Now before I scare the heck out of my readers, this is a very, very small creek that I am crossing, most could run and hop over it, but I can’t; it is also only a foot or so deep). My right foot falls through the ice, seconds later left goes under. My right is wet up to the middle of my shin, whereas the left is only wet up to my ankle. I easily pull my right up out of the ice, but my left is more difficult. The ice is broken like shards of glass, and they are poking into my ankle. Thankfully my thick sock and jeans are protecting my ankle from being cut. I finally get my foot out of the water, but both my feet are now frozen solid. The walk is over, and I’m off home to warm up.
Note to self: next time remember the dogs are lighter than I.
On Sunday I had this wonderful idea that we would all go canoeing and this time we would bring our dogs with us. Now Cocoa who is over nine years old, weighs around fifty pounds, loves to swim (hates baths, must be the clean water) but has never been in our canoe before. Bear, middle child’s dog is two years old and weighs about eighty pounds has also never been in a canoe. At first we thought it would be best to have one dog in each canoe because of their weight. Just before we headed further out onto the water, Bear actually jumped out of the canoe he was in, then proceeded to jump back in, how he didn’t topple everyone was very surprisingly.
As we started to paddle, Cocoa was not at all happy being in a canoe without Bear, my husband and middle child, who spoils both dogs. So there we were trying to keep the two canoes aligned so Cocoa could jump from one to the other. Again, how we didn’t topple from the weight of the dogs. Cocoa finally stopped barking but was not completely sure about this canoeing thing, Bear on the other hand, just seemed to stand and look around. With the added weight of both dogs, my husband did find it difficult to paddle, middle child could not give him a hand because they were unsure if Cocoa would jump out, so she basically had to hold him for most of the ride. After a while the dogs did calm down and we were able to have a lovely afternoon of canoeing. The even nicer thing about Princess Point, it is only a fifteen minute drive from home.
Princess Point is a gem in Hamilton, Ontario and on Sunday there were many paddlers out on the water.