Ellen had just woken up and wanted to come on the early walk with me. She usually sleeps in while I go out alone—with the dogs. But this morning it was so beautiful and so balmy, and it may be our last day of this weather. So out we went to greet the sun.
I think the dogs must be officially teenagers now. They've gone on quite a few adventures over the past few days. When the two of them are together they seem to think they can take on anything (a herd of deer? no problem!). I call them and they look at each other as if saying, "Are you going back? No? Okay, neither am I!" And off they go. One morning they disappeared down the back hill. I had just put on my boots to go find them when our farmer neighbor pulled up in his pick-up truck with the two rascals in his cab. He let them out and they immediately tore down the driveway as if they had never seen me before. "Dogs will be dogs," he said good naturedly.
I thanked him over and over, but went after them utterly mortified. Once they were safely back inside, the girls and I rushed into town to get ID tags. Since then we've been keeping a very close eye on them. In the interest of keeping everyone together, we've started to keep one at a time on a leash during our walks.
The upside of this is that Amabel and Ellen are getting lots of practice dog walking. Ellen especially loves to walk Nancy. Harry and Nancy have grown so much bigger, stronger over the past five months—and the girls have grown alongside them. I love to watch them handling the animals with a self-assurance that has become second nature.
I know one furry creature that will be very happy to see you when you return from your trip! Until then, be assured that she is in Ellen's good hands.