Monday, April 4, 2011
Dogs dig beach Scene
Running along the sandy beach avoiding the crashing waves that pound the shoreline she darts in and out of the ebbing surf. Erin does her best to sidestep any wave of substantial height in a game of chicken with nature. It's a game which she wins for the most part then out of nowhere a wall of water sneaks in to surprise her, the wave splashes down abruptly or quickly rushes up to eye level and she retreats to the safety of dry land. Looking up to me for reassurance, she is reminded it's okay and casually she meanders back into the cool salt water where any level that exceeds the bottom of her belly is too high for her liking. She loved the feel of water on her body especially her belly but was never too keen on the idea of swimming.
Arriving at the beach, she bounds from the back seat and gives me that look that says "hurry up, what's taking so long?" The backpack is slung over my shoulder, it contains all the essentials for one human and one canine to survive a day exploring the beach, inside the well used bag is food, water, doggie snacks, sunscreen, reading materials, and anything else that comes to mind before we hit the road. Multiple of squirrels greet Erin as we casually stroll toward the beach and she would gladly skip the beach to spend time chasing the varmints from one palm tree to another. Urging her toward the dog-friendly beach she proceeds at a leisurely pace, sniffing and exploring the new scents that cross her path or peak her interest.
Several miles of sandy expanse are hers to investigate as she sees fit, together we walk in the shallow surf with an occasional wandering into deeper water for some excitement. Off leash she wanders slightly ahead of me never putting too much distance between us, she glances back to ensure I'm with her and she continues the journey. Millions and millions of shells litter our route along with sand dollars and horseshoe crabs grounded at the shore line, little attention is paid to these creatures by Erin who strolled along without a care in the world. As the water receded, pockets of collected water or doggie wading pools made the perfect spot for her to relax, she would plop down with the biggest grin affixed to her face and there was little doubt happiness filled her heart.
Off-leash she remained for the majority of time unless we came across swarming masses of frolicking sun lovers and to avoid an unpleasant situation, I restrained her for appearances sake. Many folks would point or stroll over to say hello to Erin, who was always available for some human-canine socializing. An occasional dog would cross our path, be seen playing in the surf, or spotted lounging under an umbrella, it was so nice to be on such a dog-friendly beach. The north side of the beach was isolated except for a few brave souls, this section seemed like heaven on earth. Such a beautiful serene place where a dog could run all day, roll in the loose sand, play chase with other dogs, nap when tired and Erin was the anointed queen of this paradise. Running and playing upon the beach and surf was as good as it got for her and the ever present smile made it so worthwhile to me.
Hours of romping on the beach led to one exhausted dog, there was only so much energy Erin could expend before shelter was sought out. Upended trees due to beach erosion provided shade from the scorching sun and the perfect spot for her to rest, consume water and food, and take a nap if desired. Many days were spent in doggie paradise, she always had an amazing time and the beach never failed to deliver maximum fun for her. It was one of those magical places for her to explore, a location where she connected with nature and a place that cemented our bond. She always fell fast asleep on the way home with a broad smile as exhaustion overtook her and that told me the hour plus drive to the beach was well worth it for what it meant to Erin. Memories of us walking in the surf will last a lifetime and our beach days rank as amongst our finest together. RIP Erin!!