Observations of a Dog Walker

Every morning, Jaimie and I are out for Walk #1 of the Day.  It’s our big one for the day, approaching 7,000 (14,000) steps according to my Fitbit.  We have a couple smaller walks later in the day.

Under the category of “You can see a lot just by looking”, I put together my thoughts today.  Since we’re rural, we don’t have too many options when it comes to walking…  we either go north or south.

There’s a lot of time to observe and speculate on the walk, the environment, and the vehicles that passed us by.  Here are some of them.

  • With one exception, every car that passed us had a single driver.  The exception had a teenager in the passenger seat.  I’m guessing she was being driven to a summer job.  There wasn’t a great deal of happiness on her face;
  • There are a lot of distractions happening.  We saw drivers:
  • on their cell phone;
  • smoking;
  • drinking presumably coffee;
  • eating breakfast;
  • one person was even flossing.
  • Something that you’ll only see walking – because you walk against the traffic when there’s no sidewalks, right? – on the back of the road signs is an installation date sticker.  The teacher is me says “hey, that could be used for a mapping exercise”, or “collect the dates for data collection”, or “call the department of roads and get a sense has to how long a typical road sign lasts.”
  • We’re not the only ones who had their mailbox hit by a snow plough.  There were lots of genius ideas for duct tape;
  • The town does a nice job of trimming the path to the fire hydrant.  I wonder if they’d do my lawn?
  • The deer that got hit is still decomposing in the ditch.  We did call the roads department but they don’t clean them up unless they are on the road.  In other news, the skunk that got hit is still on the road.  So is the opossum.  Well, we think it’s dead;
  • It’s interesting to note the people that will move over when they see us and the ones that won’t.  We do get off the roadway into the gravel – how far depends on courtesy and the lack of distraction, I guess.  Big truck drivers are always the most courteous;
  • As we approach the crossing side road, it’s fascinating to see how many people don’t actually stop at the stop sign.  Recently, I’ve learned about the Idaho Stop – but this isn’t Idaho, folks;
  • There are considerably more expensive cars coming from the golf course subdivision that going to it;
  • We like a good puzzle and a cryptic personalized license plate will keep us busy thinking for a while;
  • And, about 45 minutes later, we’re done.  I couldn’t do it without my mp3 player and ear buds to keep me going.  I’m not fascinated nearly as much by the smells as he is.

    But, come tomorrow, we’re ready to go at it again.

    9 thoughts on “Observations of a Dog Walker

    1. Good morning Doug and Jaimie!

      Thanks for sharing this morning these observations from your walk. I especially enjoyed the stickers on the road signs, the passage about the 3 road-served delicacies, and the courtesy of the truck drivers!

      I was having a conversation just yesterday with Kent Manning about the enjoyment that can be derived from reading travel blogs — and here this morning I had several chuckles from your morning walk.

      As they say, it’s not the destination, but the journey.

      Be sure to show this to Jaimie:


      • Thanks for the comment, Andy. Those delicacies were but a few that I could have included – snake, frog, worm but they’re not nearly as exciting. As you say, it’s the journey…the destination is always the same for us.


    2. Hi Doug!

      Wow, where do I start?

      A different kind of post and still I learned so much! It is amazing how many things you notice just by taking a walk outside – I love how you mention that the teacher in you saw lesson ideas : ) I can’t remember who said / wrote it, that teachers may be for instance in the supermarket and still get ideas for their classes, even in there : )

      When you mentioned the dead animals (what a shame), I remembered an instance in class with my eleven bankers – I was telling them about the “Beware, Moose” signs in Canada and those who have never been to Canada were amazed! I had to show them a photo to convince them ; )

      Thank you so much for yet another super post!

      Have a great weekend,


      • Thanks for the comment, Vicky. I was just feeling a bit goofy. I had to smile at your Moose Crossing sign. You’ve got to go considerably north from here to see them. We do have Deer Crossing and Turtle Crossing signs. I have a fond memory of taking the trolly to the point at Point Pelee and the driver slammed on the brakes and got out. A snake was crossing the road and she wanted to pick it up and safely deliver it to the other side. It was one of those impressive moments that I’ll never forget.

        Liked by 1 person

    3. Wow! It’s really impressive because Swiss drivers do that too. (Wow, I was really impressed that it was a trolley driver in your case!) They even have posters up here for a campaign to save hedgehogs. If I ever come across one again, I’ll snap a photo of it and send it to you : )

      And I was thinking earlier…a driver was flossing?!?!?! Yikes!


      • I’d love to see a hedgehog in the wild, Vicky. We had one as a pet and learned quickly that activity wheels need to be oiled. Nocturnal takes on a new meaning when it hits home.

        As for the flossing, I sure hope it’s not a regular routine!

        Liked by 1 person

    4. Pingback: OTR Links 08/09/2015 | doug — off the record

    5. I really enjoyed your slice of life here, Doug! I’m astounded that the deer is decomposing – can’t have too many hunters in your neighbourhood. Depending on how badly the creature was hit,somebody could have made use of the meat, I would think.

      I realized how much less focused I am on drivers now that I don’t live in the country anymore. When I was walking on rural roads without sidewalks, I was far more aware of where the drivers were, and whether they were paying attention or not. Now, I’m lazier that way – and I’m more likely to be noticing gardens, or additions people are putting on their houses, or what new businesses are going in downtown. Our lenses adjust, I guess.


      • Thanks for the comment, Lisa. It’s nice when we do our second and third walks of the day since we go to a park or walk on a sidewalk. You’re correct; it’s an entirely different mindset.


    Please share your thoughts here

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

    Google photo

    You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

    Connecting to %s

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.