A couple of my married friends have joked with me now and then about walking their dogs as a way to meet women. I’ve never taken the idea seriously until an opportunity presented itself this past summer and I thought I’d give it a shot. If nothing else, I’d make it a little photo project. Well, yeah, at least that happened…
I had grand visions of leisurely strolls with cute pups through my old neighborhood in the beautiful Eugene summer weather, meeting new people….<ahem> women….enjoying the same. I mean, you can’t go wrong with these two, right? That’s Luke on the left and Kodi on the right.
My friends Larisa and Neil were looking for someone to take over their mid-day outings while their regular walker was on vacation. So I signed up with what I now know to be some unreasonably high expectations.
Look at this guy, though, he’s so cute. Actually, he’s pretty shy and it took a few days for him to get used to the all-too-eager new leash weight. He came around soon enough. And I had met Luke awhile back when he was living on Neil’s family farm. But since then Neil and Luke left the country for city living in Eugene.
Well, I quickly found out dog walking is literally…….yes….for the dogs. All of my expectations were crapped on, or out, from the first lurch forward to infinite fescue fertilization.
Cute, huh? I’ve never seen so much shit in so short a time as I did with Luke and Kodi. Larisa warned me to take plenty of bags, and she wasn’t kidding. One day I used FIVE. In a HALF HOUR. That’s a LOT of warm squishy poop to pick up and carry around.
They were equally complicit in the crapfest. Of course, between the random squatting, there was the nonstop leg-lifting at every bush, wall, weed, hydrant, plant, sign post, and tree we passed.
Kodi wasn’t shy about this at all, but still had to look cute and innocent doing it.
And when they weren’t doing the drop, they were looking for the perfect spot. And that seemed to be anywhere and everywhere.
It wasn’t so bad or unexpected really. I knew I’d have to take the turds to meet the birds. However, I didn’t expect I’d have to do it four or five times every day in just a half hour stretch.
The clincher, or maybe it should be “clench”-er, was that Luke is pretty antisocial when it comes to other dogs. (Remember, he came from a farm where he bossed sheep around all day.) The first time we went to the nearby park it was full of kids in some kind of outdoor summer program, and just my luck, there was another dog there. A really cute little thing, too. And as soon as we got close, Luke made the biggest scene ever and wouldn’t stop barking and lunging towards it. I had to sheepishly drag him away as fast as I could under the wary eyes of overly concerned helicopter parents, stumbling along in an entanglement of legs and leash. Pretty sure that happened right after the “cute” pictures were made. We didn’t go back to the park.
We ended up sticking to a trail that runs along a water canal through the neighborhood and behind the fairgrounds. There were fewer, but sketchier, people (always a little unnerving when one of them stops you and says “You look really familiar…”) and less traffic to deal with in general. Kodi was pretty anxious whenever we had to cross busier streets.
All told, it was still a worthy endeavor and I enjoyed getting out with the boys for a few weeks. I did manage to get a few “hellos”, but of course several of them were inevitably and perfectly timed with the number one task of a dog walker’s “duty”- picking up number twos.