Thursday, October 15, 2009

A Day at the Park Sounds so Easy

Yesterday started off as a perfectly wonderful fall day.  Not a cloud in the sky, slightly cool crisp air, and a need to get out into the world.  The boys and I embarked on an adventure to Prospect Park - the Brooklyn cousin to Central Park.

It's a good twenty-five minute walk from my house, so already I feel we are getting appropriate exercise.  Then again I own a half-Jack Russell.

We stop at my favorite, Bergen's Bagels for a creamy coffee and a plain bagel toasted with light butter.  Mr. Mop is also a fan of the bagel and now knows this place.  As I carry my bag to the park, he jumps up trying to snatch it for himself.  In fact he was once successful and got over half my bagel.  Now I stuff it in my bag and hide it from him.

The boys and I meander through Park Slope.  Glimpsing all the lovely Brownstones with their Halloween decorations.  The sun is sparkling through the golden leaves.  All is well.

We find a bench and eat our bagel.  Yes, our, I shared it with the boys.  We watched people pass by and it was clearly old lady day at the park.  All these shuffling biddies strolled, in some cases wheeled, their way past us.  Arm in arm, gossiping away in Russian.  Some stopped to pat Mr. Mop on the head.  It was sweet.

Such a lovely day.

We strolled over the greens, headed to a forested area where I looked forward to letting the boys off leash (illegal after 9 am).  Teenagers were playing, girls screaming as boys played pranks.  I smiled.  Oh those were the times.  Mums played with their children in strollers, toddlers toddled around on their new found balanced feet.

What a lovely day.

I found the sought after privacy of the forest and let the boys run.  Mop was especially thrilled with his new found freedom.  He bounded and jumped and rolled.  So cute.  I noticed some dogs behind us so veered us onto a more private path.  Just me and the boys in the sun-filled forest.

Fall is magical.

But like all things serene and lovely when it comes to being me, it all cracked.

Firstly, Mr. Mop dashed to a mudhole so he could drink some water.  My newly bathed, white dog didn't merely sip from the side, oh no.  He bounded into the muddy water.  Awesome.  He squelched around so that his paws and face were completely black.  This made him more hyper.  So he ran around like a crazy idiot with mud flying from his body.  Then when I didn't think he could get more dirty, he rolled in the dirt and leaves trying to get the mud off of his face. Super.

Secondly, I discovered what made this path so private.  It's for horses.  That's right.  HORSES.  Luckily I saw him before my dogs did so was able to grab them in time.  This didn't stop them from barking their heads off as he passed.

One would think I should be smart enough to now leash my dogs.  Ummmm.  No.

Thirdly, what comes with horses?  That's right.  Horse poop.  If you have ever read my blog you know my dogs have a horrible love of horse crap.  The found a fresh new pile and went to town.  Then came me running behind them yelling to 'GET AWAY FROM THE POOP!!!".

Apparently eating feces makes both my dogs extra hyper.  So now they are running in circles, going nuts.  I am trying to get them back on leash but neither will come to be.  And we once again enter a public area.

Just as Mr. Mop is coming to me he sees . . .  the horse.

Fourthly, Mr. Mop tears after the horse barking his freaking head off but not before . . .

Fifthly, crossing a road in front of a truck carrying park people.  They begin to yell at me to get control of my dogs.

Sixth:  Brooklyn runs after Mr. Mop, I have to scream at the truck to STOP.  They are still yelling at me, Mr. Mop is circling the horse going nuts, and Brooklyn is running in his famous circles in front of the truck barking his head off.  The horse for the record, and its' person, were awesome.  They just stood still.

There are people looking at us now, including other dogs.  I know that my dogs will go crazy at these other dogs so my only option is to run screaming down a pathway because I know the boys will follow me.

I am wearing a bright pink sweater and my face is the same colour.

Predictably, the dogs follow and just enough that I can turn around, grab Brooklyn and throw Mop into an Alpha hold.  The horse continues his way, the truck shakes their fists at me, and the other dog owners stare at me in horror.

My task at hand is to make sure Mop is obedient.  He's gotten too hyper, he is out of breath and his heart is racing.  Being on his back calms him down.  I look at him and note that his beard is FULL of horse poop and he smells like s*^t.


Clearly, I put the leashes on.  Find a lake and dump the both of them in it to clean off horrible horse poop.

Then I look up.  

We are so far into the park that I am lost.  Clouds are taking over and this lovely fall day has turned into horse s*#t.

As I make our way out, we walk pass the NYPD trailers for horses.  That's right.  The horses were police horses.  Awesome.

Twenty minutes later I find us on a road and as we are walking down it, the god damn horse is heading towards us. Like Thelma and Louise, I veer off the path and back into the forest.  There is no freaking way we are running into him again.

Eventually I get us out of the park.  And so far from home that I am forced to pick up my mud-covered, horse pooped dogs and carry them into the subway.  This makes them panic so they claw me. Exposing my bra and belly to the entire car of the 'F' train.  On top of this they REEK.

They slept for the rest of the day.  And I vowed never to take them off leash again.  EVER.