I went out of town this past weekend for one reason, and one reason alone: to be able to watch tv.
Yep. I choose to live in an isolated cabin with no television and barely any internet, and yet.... And yet sometimes ya just gotta watch....
Okay, so it's actually not just that. It's because it was the first weekend of playoff games in the National Football League. And I happen to love sports.
Okay. Not all sports. Professional basketball is just useless to me: put 100 points on the board and 2 minutes on the clock, and then maybe we have a game and I'll watch. Otherwise, with such a short shot clock, there is no strategy, no plays -- just egos running up and down the court showing off.
But there are some sports I do just love, and will go out of my way (ie, drive an hour to a friend's house) to watch: Professional and college football. I also really like college basketball and professional baseball, but not necessarily enough to drive an hour.
I will be honest, there is a much deeper reason and meaning to my love of sports: my father. For those of you who have never heard of the writer, philosopher and thinker Michael Novak, he is worth researching a bit, and you can check out his website here. And I swear it's not just personal bias.
Okay, maybe just a little....
I know I have talked repeatedly about my mother, and all the things she has given me and taught me. My father was also a critical teacher in my life, but I will admit that the one thing I associate most with him is sports. He, of course (he is a writer people!), wrote about it (see here), a book chosen by Sports Illustrated as one of the top 100 sports books of all times.
But he also watched it religiously, played it, lived it. So if you wanted to spend time with dad when he was in town -- you did as well. He taught me how to focus and how to ignore fear by throwing baseballs straight up in the air as high as he could and having me catch them barehanded. He taught me plays, strategy, rules and regulations. He taught me to note the camaraderie of the fans, the importance of the team working together, and the anticipation and tension and release that occur during every game -- a million times during every game -- and the joy of those lessons and those sensations. He taught me that sports were sacred, and bonding....
Which just means that while I might allow myself to skip most of the season nowadays, I will absolutely ensure I can watch my team(s) in the playoffs.
So I basically invited myself over a friend's house, and she and her husband generously and graciously took me and my two pups in for the weekend. It was lovely. Especially since they happen to have a huge yard with an 8 foot high perimeter fence. Yep. Hollow proof.
And I got to watch the games. And what games they were this weekend! Okay, well -- there was one game that was actually interesting!
More than that though, I watched "teevee".... And um, that was where the problem is, and a reminder of why I have so far chosen not to install satellite television at the cabin: I sat there and watched and watched and watched.
It didn't seem to much matter what I watched (though I'm partial to crime shows and home shows), I was just mesmerized. I didn't manage to go to bed before 3 am a single night while I was there. It was delicious, it was awe-inspiring, it was awful, and dangerous.
I barely walked the dogs (I might miss the end of a show, or the next one on after that one, or a commercial!). I barely showered, I didn't eat full meals. I sat and I watched....
I did nothing. And loved it.
Which is probably why I fully deserved my arrival back home at the cabin this evening.
I open the vehicle doors, let the dogs jump down, grab one bag and turn to go open the front door, and.... out of the corner of my eye I see Rilke barely in view up the drive, and Hollow sprinting after him.
~ sigh ~
As a friend pointed out -- they surely had lots and lots of peemail to catch up on. Umm yes. Clearly their inboxes were quite backlogged. As I saw no sight of them for an hour.
And then just now, on our late evening potty break? Well, Rilke came back when called. Hollow did not. She still has not made an appearance....
So it's become even more blatantly clear to me: these dogs do not need me. Frankly, they are pretty happy with the toys, treats and dog food.....but I think, given a choice, they'd probably actually hesitate.... Clearly they do not need me for their exercise or adventures.
Which just means.... If I didn't need the exercise, I would give up worrying about ensuring they have at least 2 hours of vigorous exercise every.single.day. I would give up on worrying about them period -- and just hope they have enough sense to come home at night before I lock up for the evening.
But the problem is? I, ummmm... do need the exercise. And I ummmmmm.... do need them. I need the camaraderie, the sense of a team working together... And yeah, probably the anticipation, tension and release of their disappearances. Well. Maybe not that.
~ sigh ~
Still waiting on Hollow.....
Oh wait, I just saw that the motion sensor light by the front door has just come on....
Collar cams. Yep. Collar cams.