Walking the Dogs

What was I thinking?

Walking Dog 1

I spend most Wednesday mornings volunteering at the Camano Animal Shelter Association (CASA), walking dogs. When I signed up for the task,  I didn’t think about the fact that my dog (a toy poodle) grew up avoiding  my wheelchair.  wp_20160612_15_31_25_pro-2

After being crushed twice, she recognizes the sounds of my chair and makes the appropriate adjustments-such as staying far away from the wheels.   Other dogs,  aren’t so familiar with crazy wheelchair women taking them for walks.

Each  dog I walk from the shelter  requires training the first few minutes out.  Some get it, some don’t.  The ones that don’t, usually end up with a leash wrapped around their legs or tied up in my chair at least once during the walk.  I’ve even had to flag down a passing driver to help untangle my chair from the poor little Jack Russell’s leash.  Does that stop me from walking dogs? Of course not.  It’s far too rewarding.Walking Dog 2

The most recent adventure was a result of the record rainfall we’ve been having.  I walked a frisky, six-month-old, black lab through my usual route. Including a large, grassy park (their favorite spot).  We went into the park as I’d done many times before- even in the rain.  This time, the grass was basically a swamp.  That’s right.  I was stuck in the mud, in the rain, by myself, with a goofy lab jumping on me, around me, and behind me.  Thank goodness for cell phones and the three CASA staff members that eventually pushed me out of my predicament.

That wasn’t the first time I’ve been stuck, and it won’t be the last I’m sure.  But I did bring the girls at CASA a bunch of cupcakes the next day to thank them for their assistance and the friendly way they always help me. And… to make sure they’d continue to let me walk the dogs.   Playing with Dogs 1


Going Riding

Honeybee and me

Not a horse person, not even an animal lover.  My first real pet was a parakeet and that was a stretch for me.  Twenty years ago I decided I needed to find an outdoor activity to replace the things I’d enjoyed previously.  How in the world did I end up at Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center (littlebit.org).  I’m still not sure, but somehow fate led me there.

Now I spend every Thursday riding my favorite horse, connecting with friends and benefitting from the amazing spirit of the Little Bit community.




Too funny not to share


Cannon Beach


About a week ago, Guy and I decided to stop for lunch at a restaurant in our old neighborhood.  I happened to be wearing a long skirt and it happened to be quite blustery out.  While racing through the wind and rain I  suddenly felt myself being  pulled off the wheelchair and my skirt coming down.  I let out a squeal to alert my husband as I came to an abrupt stop.  The wind had blown the end of my skirt right under my wheel.  Fortunately I remembered to let go of my control stick (which isn’t always my first reaction) before I landed on the pavement with my skirt wrapped around my knees. I wear long skirts frequently, but that was a first. And you would think I’d remember to tuck my near-lethal skirt out of he way when I came out of the restaurant . . .