POST 37 Hey, Hey, Mama….

max…said the way you move.

Black Dog

Led Zeppelin – 1971

Sunday brought a quick visit from our builder, an alternative to watching the end of the Bears game. Stone, roof and windows are still the topic of debate, or at least the subject of conversation. Since the new house is a modified ranch we will have a very large, highly visible, roof. The Homeowners Association Architectural Review Committee is suggesting an upgraded roofing material. We may go down that road, though it will put a dent in the “discretionary” costs fund. The builder just keeps on telling Barb, “Anything you pick out will look great.” (Of course, he is right!)

Didn’t we have lovely weather this weekend! While the Cubs wore their balaclavas in New York City, we were basking under sunny blue skies and moderate temperatures. Saturday was a perfect afternoon to take Max for a walk. Max seemed to think so too, running to the back door when I suggested the mile and a quarter turn around the Heron’s Landing loop, and sitting patiently while I put on his collar and leash.

Max was never a runner, but he used to be a decent walker. Four or five mile walks with a water stop at Dominick’s were part of his regular routine. But that was a few years ago. Now the Dominick’s is a Mariano’s and spry young Max is  eleven, and as we all know, that is 77 in dog years. Much of his black coat has turned grey and he is sleeping more and more. He is getting a little more cranky, and a lot more jealous of the kitten. But he was freshly groomed last week, looked like a cool young dude, and had a bit of bounce in his step.

So we set out on our walk, me listening to my tunes on Pandora, Max leaving his  liquid greeting card at almost every house to let the ladies know he had stopped by.  About two-thirds of the way around the loop we came to our fork in the road. At that point there is an offshoot that leads to the front entrance of the subdivision. I had a little blue bag I needed to drop off in the garbage can by the mail boxes there, so I gave Max’s collar a little tug to let him know that I needed us to take the little side trip.

Max didn’t exactly crumple, but it soon became clear  the loyal old trail horse was barely up to walking the extra quarter of a mile. Eleven years of climbing the stairs has taken its toll. Every joint must be aching. I can see his eyes telling us “No more stairs. Build the damn ranch already!” You got it boy! Just be sure you hang around to enjoy it.

Have a great day, and give your dog a hug.

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