I’m house sitting the dogs for Kathy and Dave while they are traveling for work. So the pups and I pretty much just chill when I’m not at work. Not terribly exciting. River seems to enjoy being part of a pack again and doesn’t mind sharing me. Since the dogs aren’t used to being by themselves I am sleeping on a queen (or maybe even king) sized bed with all of them (yes all 5 dogs). Our night-time routine goes something like this… Arrive home from work to baying beagles and a howling shepherd. They all have to say hello, tell me about their day (waiting for me to get home) greet River and basically dash around like idiots. I let them out, turn on some lights and get their dinner ready. While scooping the food they usually work themselves into a dancing frenzy (at this point River joins in). I measure everything out and start putting bowls down. Everyone has to wait for THEIR bowl. No musical bowls here. The race is on to see who can gobble their food down first. We stand around until everyone is done and then we go upstairs. The dogs usually meander around wondering if the parents are going to show while I do some things. There is a bought of barking when the neighbors drive by and some serious carpet rolling to relax. They slowly settle keeping an eye of where I am at. If I sit down on a chair or the sofa there is some jostling to see who will get the feet, who will get the lap and who just has the floor. Once it’s officially bed time I collect the old man of the group and the rest follow me. Everyone has to work out where they will be sleeping. River and Blondie usually end up under the blankets curled up next to me. The Shepherd Cassidy stretches out next to me and insists on being close enough to touch me. Beagle boy 1 sleeps at me feet (on usually). Beagle boy two sleeps next to my head on a pillow (ideally his own). I am cocooned by dogs. No tossing and turning here. So far no one has gotten snappy when squashed on accident and we have been fight free.
The full moon is out for the frosty nights and breath taking. Sitting in the hot tub under clear skies, stars and moon beams is pretty freaking cool. Being on the hillside means very little light from people and getting the northern night effect. Sitting in silence listening to the sounds of the forest is the best kind of music to me. I always hear people say how quiet the nights are in the winter months but I have not found it to be true. It takes some tuning into but once you do the woods are alive with the nights creatures. Owls of different types call out in many tones. Lately one has been hooting next to the house and echos. Small furred animals chitter to each other (probably about the location of said owls). Howls of a canine can be faintly heard from the other side of the mountains, whether is a lone wolf or someone’s sled dog I couldn’t say for sure, but from the sled dogs I’ve known I would say not. If you listen carefully you can hear the ripples of the concentric rings as if the forest itself was exhaling. To me this symphony of life at night is much richer than any iPod playlist or Tv show. There is rarely true silence. If it wasn’t so cold I keep my window open all night.