Spring is headed our way...

Spring is here
Spring is my favorite time of year, the grass starts to grow, the days get longer, the lake gets warm (but it never makes a difference to the dogs) the mud dries up and most importantly the mower starts again.  During the winter months, not much machinery runs for various reasons but summertime is game on for the equipment.  Once the season starts, the dogs think that every time I walk out the back door and walk to the pole barn, it’s only for their sole pleasure.  Just walking in that direction starts the excitement.  If they are laying or sitting anywhere in the vicinity, their eyes get big, ears perk up, prancing is everywhere and some ever start to bark.  Some will take off running and jumping the ornamental fence even if the gate is open just because they can.  The others will run nearly 30 feet and stop and wait but barking all the time.  Whether it’s the tractor, Gater, chain saw, blower or lawnmower, if it goes varoom-varoom, it means to start running, and they don’t know where, just somewhere.

Somedays are not good...
As we all know it can be dangerous.  Years ago, one of our first dogs “Max” was running alongside our neighbor’s 4-wheeler and he got so excited, he turned the wrong way and they ran directly over him, they sped to our house and Max followed and he was good as gold.  They were so apologetic, but everything was fine, and Max wanted more.  If I cut grass, they will lay a ball or a stick in front of the mower so I will have to stop and play and I will tell you, there are times when I don’t see the ball and boy does it fly across the yard if I run over it.  I’m sure they have figured it out and think I drive a big ball launcher and it is their personal toy.  The thing that worries me the most is when they run through the woods during the first of the season.  They will weave in and out of the trees, not really watching the trail ahead, only each other and I can’t imagine the processing that is going through their brain in milliseconds.  “Just be careful kids” is always on my mind and shouted it at times but nothing can break them from running and having a good time.
This Saturday afternoon, I ask Elaine to help me with straightening up my office, just to “start” the process and assist getting a handle on it.  I have things in piles and drawers that need some organization with lots of catching up with Clancy’s Dream.  I found my first digital camera in the bottom of a drawer that was a whopper and when I opened the battery cast it had corroded because of the old batteries.  Just as I raised it up to throw it in the trash can, I thought I need to check for the memory card.  Low and behold, there was one in the camera and when I looked at it, they don’t make that size anymore, so I tossed the camera back in the trash.  As I continued to clean out the drawer, I found the adaptor to download the information on the camera.  First, the computer would not recognize the card and I had nothing but trouble, but I was now captivated.  After many attempts, I finally got it to open and download…

I was shocked and dumbfounded because I found 19 photos and 3 videos which are priceless to me that I never saw.  They were 15 years old and it is the only video I have of it…if I only knew then what I know now…
We all rush around and overlook the things that are really important to us and miss the things that really matter, and I am at the front of the line with this and if anyone should listen, it needs to be me.

When I saw the video, I actually gasped and then a tear ran down my cheek and whenever I watch it, it still happens.  Oh, how things have changed.
You see, the real things are free and nothing or no-one can buy happiness or peace of mind and if you try, the more you spend the deeper in life’s debt you get.  We worry about what others think, we worry about what they say and what they think of us and what really matters is what makes us happy and should care less about their concerns and take care of our inner self.   The best vacation we ever took was a cross country trip for three weeks and it was free except for the gas and food and we even carried a cooler and ate out of the back seat and it was majestic.  We saw all the sights and out of the “100 places in America” to see, we saw eighty-nine of them, and I would go again tomorrow if possible and it was free.  In hindsight, every planned vacation was expensive, and we always came back more stressful than when we left.

Henry David Thoreau: "Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder."

The short and only video portrays our first dogs that were “free to a good home” and they brought to us so much happiness.  What started out as a lap companion for Elaine and deer-chaser for the farm, turned us into what we are today.  I can’t even imagine where we would be right now if either one of these events did not happen…. Funny how this stuff works…  I’ve always said that “when you throw a rock into a pond, the ripples may be subtle, but they can last forever.” And they usually do.  As I’ve said before, because of Max, our life, the lives of others, our children and children of our pup owners have and will be changed because of “free to a good home.”

Max, our first Border Collie
The camera was discarded nearly 15 years ago and was nearly thrown in the garbage twice, but something made me check it and because I did, I was swooped back years into a simple time that shaped my life forever.  Look around and see what you might be missing, it just might be priceless, I know I now have.  Thanks, Max and Lilly…  Ken