I wonder if I didn’t have to stop to pick up after the dogs … how long it would actually take me on my run each morning.
Many of my friends really seem to enjoy talking with the Cowboy. The cowboys. My ‘city’ friends too. They are always asking him about some of the things he does, they know little to nothing about. Things that back home for him (or even 20 miles outside Madison), are everyday things that everyone knows about and ask rarely for explanation. Even the posts I happen to write about anything cowboy way-of-life here on the blog, seem to consistently get the most hits.
The Cowboy asked me the other day, what are you going to write about today. I answer, “It hasn’t hit me yet.”
So he says, “You should write a blog about what I’ve learned from you.”
I laugh …
“I’m not so sure I know what you’ve learned from me,” I say at first.
Plus that isn’t as interesting, I say to myself.
He starts down the list of things he’s learned.
“How about, picking up dog poop.”
The first few times the Cowboy visited this past fall, after I decided to stop being a vagabond (I house sat for awhile after selling my own home just over a year ago, not sure where or if I wanted to plant firm roots anywhere again, yet) and settle into my own place ..
He offered to walk my dogs while I was either a) getting ready to go wherever it was we were heading off to or b) at work.
I came home one afternoon after work and happened to see a big pile of evidence he had most likely been in the back yard of the apartment building with the dogs while I was gone. But hadn’t quite completed all the steps of ‘taking the dogs out’.
“Is that from one of ours?” I ask.
“Probably,” he says. “I took them out awhile ago.”
I head out to pick up after them. And then we have ‘the talk.’
“I hate to tell you this, but you’ve got to pick up after them,” I say. “I know that’s not a fun job, so if you want to leave that for me, I’ll get to it. But just know, it’s got to be picked up.”
I’ve been doing it for about as long as I can remember. Always had dogs. Always lived where it needed to be picked up.
I used to use Oops Scoops. But they seem harder anymore to use the cardboard piece inside .. to pick up the pile. I find myself chasing the pieces around on the grass more than I am picking them up.
So I’ve reverted back to biodegradable small plastic baggies. Which, used to totally gross me out, but they’re quick, convenient and they just work.
“You have to pick up after your dogs,” he starts laughing. “That’s a new one for me. I live in the country .. never had to do that one.”
For a man used to turning ’em out, letting them run, having them do their business in a pasture or nearby grove of trees and them coming back when they are through… he’s gotten the hang of it all. Now when I even think of asking if everything is taken care of.. he beats me to the punch.
“Yep. All taken care of,” he usually says, smiling.
The dogs, couldn’t be happier. I’m not so sure about the Cowboy.
I promised though, to not even consider asking for help..
With the cats.