Hot. It’s. So. Hot.

Hot. It’s. So. Hot.

So we ran together yesterday, Strax and I, and I really thought it wasn’t too hot for her. I think we are going to have to mark her as a cool weather runner only, though, because I spent a lot of the run worrying about her and how she was doing. We ran a loop (about a mile and a half) and paused to check on each other. I gave her some water and she really slurped it down in a hurry – almost a whole water bottle (it’s not a little bottle, either). She clearly wanted to run some more, but the run loses its fun when I’m worried about my running partner. She tried to stay in the shade as much as possible, and I tried to chose routes that were shade-intensive, but there’s only so much one can do in the Deep South when it comes to the heat. You just have to pay attention and don’t go too far.

We went back to the car and she wanted to pause and run in the very small stream that’s nearby, which I let her do. It was very small, as we haven’t had a whole lot of rain recently. As she ran up and down the stream, though, I thought about how she let me know what she wanted. She stood in the path, where we had to turn if we were going to go back to the car, and just stopped. She waited there for me to notice she wasn’t right with me, and when I did, she started to head up that trail towards the water. I knew the water was there, so I followed. I realized then that in the past she had tried to tell me she wanted to visit the stream, but I had ignored her, thinking she just wasn’t sure where we were going. Obviously I was – again – wrong.
I really look forward now to the cooler weather. I miss having her with me on my runs, and I find that I’m secretive about running without her. I don’t want to hurt her feelings since I can’t explain to her that I’m leaving her behind for her own good, and that’s its better for her that way, and there will be opportunities for us to run together later – I will make sure of it. I find it amazing that a dog can make me feel guilty, and that I want to protect her feelings.

If I had three wishes, I would make one of them that animals could talk. All of them. Can you imagine what the voice of a hedgehog might sound like? I’m thinking high and whistly.

Anyway – I’m over the heat. Which is funny, since I’m going to the beach with my family. It’s only three days, but wow, I’m really excited. I want to take Straxi with me next time – I hope we can go to the beach next summer, but if we are going to, I will need to set it up now. It’s not cheap. I would love to take her out on the beach, but so few beaches are dog friendly. Maybe I will just take her to a doggie day camp, and let her have her own vacay. But she gets so nervous about me being gone, and this will be my first trip away from her for a significant amount of time. We will see how she does, and how I do, and decide then how to treat travel with Strax.

Today marks the end of my summer classes, and after my brief sojourn to the beach, I will have to begin work on my classes for the fall. That whole business about teachers having the summer off? Total and epic bullshit. But I will be able to take some time for some good runs, and maybe even read a few good books. I hope so.

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