Good Night, Good Dog

IMG_2688-EFFECTS

Callisto, the wonderful dog we adopted seven years ago, passed away peacefully after a short battle with disease. She leaves a dog-shaped hole in our hearts as she was very much our daughter. My wife and I wished she could have stuck around to meet the baby, but the universe has a funny way of balancing equations. One life leaves us just as another is arriving.

Good night, good dog. You were the best friend a man could have on any adventure. I miss you dearly, but I’m happy you’re not suffering anymore and you’re in that place where dogs go to chase bunnies eternally.

Vaya con Dios.

Sunday was a good day

The dog and I went out for a run on Sunday at the nearby state park. There’s a lake there. Together with the weather, the lake made the 3-mile run more tolerable. There were also plenty of people. The nice weather does that. It draws people out the door and to the outdoors. A lot of those people had dogs with them, making for interesting encounters on the different trails.
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Stress relief via slogs

The dog was visible.
The dog was visible.

SLOG = “Slow Jog”

I’ve been under a ton of stress the last few days because I applied for a doctoral degree at a very prestigious university. They were to make their decision soon. (In fact, as I you read this, they may have already made their decision.) It used to be that I would deal with stress with a snack, or a well-packed burger. While I still grab a quick snack, I’ve been making an effort to make that snack something a little healthier than a fat-packed this or that.

I’ve also been going out for slogs with the dog, even if it has been very cold. That has been key in keeping me sane through the anxiety of waiting. There’s something about the dog running along with me, almost smiling. There’s also something about the cool, clean air filling my lungs and letting me know that I’m alive, and that I’ll continue to be alive whether they accept me into the doctoral program or not.

Unfortunately, not everyone is able to go out for jogs or runs, or even walks, in their neighborhoods because of crime or other unsafe conditions where they live. When I think about that, I feel an even greater urge to get through the doctoral program and have more authority and ability to help people like that. The world would be a much better place if everyone was able to go out for a walk with a dog.

We’ll see how it goes.

Out for a cold slog

I was bundled up well.
I was bundled up well.

The weather was cold today, and the sun was no where to be seen. But I had promised myself, my wife, and my dog that I would go out for a slog (a slow jog) for at least two miles. So I bundled up good and headed out the door for two miles (walk or jog, but mostly walk) around the neighborhood… And I had zombies chasing me all the way!

The thing about getting back into a rhythm, at least with me, is that I’m very impatient. I want to run a marathon right away, and I get upset with myself that I can’t. I mean, I know that it’s going to take a while to build-up my stamina and fitness back.

I just wish it wasn’t going to take so much time and effort.

But I did this damage to myself over the last few years, and it’s going to take a while to fix it. Today was a good step forward. I felt good, even if I was beyond cold. The dog loved it, though… And I love myself a little more, too.

I went running with a dog out in the woods

The pup and I went out to the woods while my wife went to a baby shower in Indiana, PA. The park was Yellow Creek Park. There were plenty of questions as to why the park was yellow. I didn’t try hard to find out.

Anyway, we jogged up and down some very slippery hillsides. It had snowed about half an inch the previous night, so there was plenty of snow and mud to trip us. The dog, with her four legs, managed the trails with no problem. On the other hand, I managed to slip and fall several times.

But we had fun, and that’s all that counts.

Damsite Sign
Where’s the damn site? Oh, wait.

More information on the park is here: http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/stateparks/findapark/yellowcreek/index.htm

Of course, if you prefer Google Maps, here you go: