It snowed here on Tuesday. Big fluffy flakes that just floated down all day long, like someone was dusting us with Frosted Flakes. The world beyond our yard disappeared, and all the sounds stopped – no birds, no wind, no more leaves rustling, that’s for sure. The pile on the front railing just grew higher and higher. Inside, the dogs got fluffier. That may sound odd, but if you have a dog you know they are great barometers. When it gets colder and less friendly outside, they get more cuddly when they are inside. That doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t want to go outside, though. Ella, my Chocolate Labrador, LOVES the snow. She is a happy creature by nature, but I swear the snow makes her brain come loose, and she just goes loopy! She is a wonderful motivator; how can you not smile and want to join in the fun when you see someone scoot around and kick up the snow and make snow angels? Even Simon, our older German Short-Haired Pointer, who has shorter hair and is not so keen to be out in the cold anymore, will romp with her when they go out together.
It snowed more on Wednesday, and again on Wednesday night, so this morning we all bounded out the door at top speed to make fresh tracks. No pristine winter wonderland at Rabbit Hollow – I have enough little footy-prints in the snow to create a labyrinth pattern worthy of M.K. Escher. “The troops”, as they are affectionately known, amuse themselves by eating snow as I shovel the driveway (Simon likes to catch it off the shovel – what can I say? Some of us are easily amused…). Then it’s off to the orchard to follow the coyote tracks or snow-doze between the trees in search of any other good scents. Once we have secured the perimeter (meaning the whole orchard, the vegetable garden, the pumpkin patch and the neighbour’s yard), then we have time for a bit of “Wild Kingdom”. (the Canadian version of “Wild Kingdom”, with Lorne Greene hosting – remember this?) Simon chases Ella through the field as fast as he can, and she outmanoevres him by doing a wonderful tuck-and-roll that lets her hop up and head out in a different direction. Simon always wins with a mock bite to her throat, but I think she enjoys the thrill before she finally puts her legs up in the air in defeat.
Once this final bit of fun was complete, we could head inside – breakfast for them and me was in order. They enjoy the same old kibble with as much enthusiasm every day. For me this morning it was a delicious cup of steaming cocoa (made with a bit of cinnamon to add an exotic touch) and a bowl of Red River cereal. It made for a heartwarming way to start a cold day.