Yesterday, I went for a walk during my lunch time. I get to take a 90 minute lunch twice a week, as long as I use it for something health and wellness related. Like a walk!

The weather was decent. We’ve been getting a spate of inversions lately, where the cloud cover hangs low. There have been days recently when we’ve been entirely in the clouds all day. It’s surreal and beautiful.

It looked like it might rain on me for my walk, so I layered up under my raincoat and headed out. Of course, I didn’t get more than a few droplets of rain, because I was prepared for a lot more. I wore my heated vest as well, but I ended up needing to turn it off. Yes, it was in the high 30’s, but I had some good layers and was moving decently fast (about 20 minute mile pace).

About a half mile from my place, I walked by a house with three dogs. All three were out and gave me a barking welcome as I walked by. They ran towards me a bit, but stayed well on their own property. One was definitely a Corgi, another had the look of a St. Bernard, and the third was a black and white mutt as far as I could tell. All very cute.

I kept on walking, because I wanted to walk two miles on this day. The cloud cover lightened enough as I walked out that I wondered if maybe I should have put on sunscreen. The sun wasn’t quite out, but my glasses, which react to UV light, were on their way to being sunglasses.

On the way back, I encountered only the black and white dog when I walked past that house again, but it was out at the road and greeted me with no barking. Instead, the pup approached me with a friendly tick-tocking tail. I didn’t pet the dog, but I did speak friendly, and it certainly got a good whiff of me.

I can only guess that the dog later followed my scent trail up to my home, because a few hours later, while I was in a virtual meeting, that very dog ran by my window.

Lucky for me, the meeting was with someone who didn’t mind that I had to take a quick “there’s a dog in my yard” break. I ran into the living room and saw the dog out the front windows. I watched as the dog went up to a tree, marked it, and then trotted away back towards home.

I think I may have been adopted by this dog.

Which is fine. There aren’t any dogs at my house, and if a neighborhood dog has decided my house needs the protection of a dog, who am I to say no?

So along with the cat prints Ambrose saw when there was snow leading under our deck, and the cat puke – with discernable rodent parts – left on our front walkway, I seem to be getting a collection of animals without trying. Is this what it means to live rural?

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