Instead of going to the gym yesterday, I took advantage of the beautiful weather to go to the park instead.

This is our neighborhood park. It is the site of public concerts in the summertime. I used to go, when the kids were young enough to sit with me instead of going off with their friends. Now, I listen to the music from my front porch.


It is the place for playing Ultimate Frisbee, and a favorite spot for morning walkers.

The other park has tennis and basketball courts, a swimming pool, and a little castle, so it is the more popular of the town’s two big parks, but this one is great for walking.


Before I joined the gym, I used to bring the dogs here for a morning walk.

Toby would start out fairly excited upon first getting in the car, lolling his tongue out of his mouth and wagging his tail. He would stick the tip of his nose out the window and drool on the glass. He would begin whining with excitement when we dropped #2 son off at school, and be absolutely beside himself with excitement by the time we actually reached the park. His whining and fidgeting would goad me into yelling at him, which he probably thought was my way of expressing how incredibly excited I was to be going to the park, too.

Then he would be so thrilled that he would weave from side to side of the path, as far as his leash would allow in either direction. It would take half a mile before he could calm down enough to walk normally. But at that point, his largely unsuccessful stint at dog school would return to his puny mind, and he would settle into his Controlled Walking. By the time we got back to the car, he would be tired and happy, and flop into the seat with a quiet grin.

The gym is better in many ways for me, but it is sad for Toby.