It’s amazing how one of the dog-owning realities that has long made me hesitant to adopt a dog is now one of my favorite things about owning a dog.
I have long resisted bringing home a dog because I’m lazy and selfish, and I didn’t relish the idea of waking up early to take a dog for a walk, or trying to get home by a certain time so I can take a dog for a walk. Although, to be brutally honest, it was more the waking up early for the morning walk that often dissuaded me from dog ownership. While I may be a morning person, I am not exactly a willing morning person. I like my sleep. I love my sleep. And I tend to be very unhappy when I have to give it up for some such reason.
But then Charlie came into my life. And our morning and evening constitutionals (as I have dubbed our walks) are two of my favorite things I do each day. I look forward to them. I even wake up before my alarm most days in anticipation of them. And considering that my weekday alarm is set for 4:30am to accommodate the morning constitutional, that is really saying something.
Because not only are these constitutionals such a great way to start our day – a nice leisurely stroll does wonders for the sleepy mind – but they have also opened my eyes to the beauty that is right here in my own neighborhood. I come back from the morning constitutionals refreshed, awake, alert, and ready to start my day. I come back from the evening constitutionals relaxed, calmed, and ready to settle down for the evening. And I come back from both filled with the wonder of our surroundings.
The flowers in this area are truly spectacular. I haven’t been to Hawaii, or any other tropical area known for their floral life, but I think some of the flowers I have seen right here on Charlie’s constitutionals are some of the most incredible this planet can offer. They are stunning in their colors and vibrancy. And they remind me every day of the magic we can see right in front of us. A lesson I learned over and over on my cruise around Cape Horn.
We also live in a rather historic area of Los Angeles – of which I was vaguely aware prior to the start of these constitutionals – and the architecture here is spectacular. The early craftsman bungalows that surround our apartment complex are charming with their beautiful wood embellishments, gabled roofs, and full-length front porches. I absolutely love them! And no wonder: most of the bungalows built in this neighborhood date from about 1910 – 1925. One of my favorite time periods in history.
Who knew this was all right here in my backyard?
And as Charlie and I take off twice (or even three times) a day for our constitutionals, I also ask myself: why did I wait so long to adopt a dog??