February 13, 2012

Mud and Dust

What is the difference between this place…

…and this?

Yes, there are many differences, but for a dog the difference can be summed up in mud and dust.

The past week has been an interesting mix of business, learning, and pleasure. I think I got the best end of the pleasure deal getting to stay with my friend, Paige while my moms traveled to Phoenix so Gretchen could take a class from the Tallgrass Acupressure Institute and Ann could visit her sister, Debbie.

Students and instructors (and dogs) after their Tallgrass Acupressure class in Phoenix.

We got a short week’s worth of walks in last week and then off I went for a sleepover at Paige’s house and yes, my stay, while immensely enjoyable, was filled with rain and  MUD! Gretchen’s, on the other hand, was filled with sun and DUST.

When she came home last night we compared notes.

“I think I’d like the dust and sun more,” I stated matter of factly though I must admit I had a blast playing in the mud and rain with Paige (I just didn’t like the bath afterwards!).

“Oh,” Gretchen said, “Give me the mud and rain any day.”

Apparently, the dry weather (which wasn’t unbearably hot since it’s winter there, but still 75 degrees at noon) makes Gretchen’s curls disappear and her nose bleed.

“And there are no natural landmarks,” she complained. Pressed further she said that she needs water to get her bearings. “I always know where I am here in the Northwest because the water is around me and I can navigate north to south, east to west by know which bodies of water are where.”

In Phoenix they have what they call mountains, but apparently they weren’t much help.

“Everything is brown in Phoenix,” Gretchen explained. “Brown dirt, brown mountains, brown houses…brown, brown, brown. I missed the green and the blue and white-capped mountains all around me.”

And she missed me and all her dog walking and swim clients. “Yes,” she said, “I got to meet some cool dogs and learn some amazing information, but I was sure happy when we landed in Seattle to rain and cooler temperatures.”

I had to laugh. Most people think the rain of Seattle is miserable and there are days when we always wish for drier climes and a bit more blue sky with warm sun, but apparently Gretchen would rather have the climate we have — mud and rain — than the one Phoenix has — heat and dust.

I think I’m torn. I was born in the high desert and there is some beauty to be found there. But today, when we set out on our walk with Rosie and Tyson, I was happy for the mud between my toes and the smell of rain on the wind.

Still, when I see the photos of Phoenix and hear about the great time Gretchen had with family and new friends (students and instructors), I wish I could have made the trip. I wanted to meet my cousins and set foot on warm dirt if even for a short time.

Cousin Harley
Cousin Rover

But I had a great time with Paige and Auntie Sheila. And now it’s great to be back home with my pack and back to work in the mud and rain. Yep, my heart belongs here!

More later!



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