I’m gonna tie that dog to me next time I run.

If you are keeping up, you know that yesterday’s bike/run was kinda crappy…headwinds, bad mood, all that.  Today, in a effort to change things up a bit, I decided to run on the property.  It’s a trail run, but it’s truly my favorite place of all time to run, it always puts me in a good mood, and it was only 6 miles, so I laced up my trail shoes and headed out.

You also know that my golden retriever Boo, and my bulldog Uga usually run the distance with me.  Just to refresh, Boo is perfect, wonderful, brilliant – absolutely everything a dog should be.  If I could clone her, I would make my first million…everyone loves this dog.  Uga is…entertaining.  She’s not the sharpest tool in the shed, but she is covered over with personality, and lives life with abandon…always happy, always curious, and has no idea that her short, squatty, bulldoggy stature is comical no matter what she does.

Anyway, we headed out – Boo runs ahead, smells all the delicious farm smells, runs back to check on me, then runs ahead again.  Uga is along for the ride.  Sometimes she follows Boo, sometimes she runs right along with me, sometimes she chases a rabbit, quite literally.  I call her name when I can’t see her, and she always trots back from wherever it is she’s adventured. 

Today, I’d run for 20 minutes or so, around the open part of the farm…the ponds, the pasture, around the house.  Then we headed into the woods and as we approached the area of the back 40 we call the campsite, Boo ran up three deer out of a thicket – beautiful whitetail, 2 does and a buck.  When Uga saw those white flags running, she took off at a dead sprint.  The deer gracefully cleared the fence at the edge of the property, and Uga wriggled her bulldog booty under the fence and never slowed down.  All the while I was yelling her name and whistling – to no avail.  Boo, of course, stayed right with me, in a move I swear was designed to remind me how a good dog behaves. 

In an effort to salvage the workout AND retrieve Uga, I climbed the fence after her, and if you can call crashing through the overgrowth a jog, I kept running, whistling, calling her name.  I was on someone else’s land, moving in a zig-zag pattern, thinking of all the ways I was going to NOT let her run with me again.  This might be a good time to tell you that we lost her 2 days ago when Jesse and I were walking the property, and found her hours later hanging out at the rock quarry that borders our land.  This time I had no such luck.  I did the entire remaining 40 minutes or so – an unending barrier of briars/twigs/branches/leaves, trying to yell, whistle, breathe, and trying to sustain some semblance of an elevated heart rate.  I gave up when my session time ended, and walked back to the house with Boo, replanning my entire day in my head to include a car search/phone calls to find her. 

As I got back to the house, and was grumbling about how high-maintenance she is, there she was, wagging her little bulldog booty, her face in its bulldog smile, wet and filthy.  I have absolutely no idea what her adventure was, and she wasn’t telling.  I was so glad to see her, and because I know the Cocoa-Puff-sized nodule of nerve tissue that serves as her brain wouldn’t understand it all, I didn’t even fuss at her.

All’s well that ends well?  Okay, we can go with that.  And I actually even got the workout in…

Before we started that adventure and I turned my iPod off to listen for her, I did have a great random song turn up:  you don’t know motivation until you’ve had Sheryl Crow singing in your ear:  “Run, baby, run, baby, run, baby, run” (Baby loves to run).  I know it’s not about literal running, but it sure pushed me along for 3 minutes or so.

Thanks for reading.