Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Harley Almost Swept Away

Somewhere out there is Harley Dog's golf ball.

Harley Dog is truly half monkey. He used to be terrified of the water but I've gently worked with him to slowly overcome his fears. He used to be scared of everything!

I was more than happy that over time, he learned to walk with me down the beach, finally unafraid of the crashing waves. Much to my surprise, he has even started prancing around with me in very shallow water on warmer days.

It's like having a new doggy, but it's my same old quirky canine.

Today we hiked to a remote beach area to play fetch with his favorite golf ball. I took him off his flexi-leash. There was this new tidal creek, no idea when it appeared, it wasn't there on my previous visits.

We were playing toss and fetch with the golf ball, though sometimes Harley changed this to keep away or watch-me-ignore-you, so I pulled out treats and the clicker to remind him.

Now we had a fun game going. He chased after the ball maybe 2 dozen times, returning it to me for the next toss.

Then I made a boo-boo.

I threw his his golf ball which hit a rock then bounced into the swift flowing stream before Harley could snatch it up. He took a flying leap off the bank into the waters without hesitation, frantically searching for his beloved toy.

I was astonished! He simply vanished over the side of the bank into the new creek.

I ran over terrified the waters had swept him away because I couldn't see him. But he was walking below in water up to his chin searching for his toy.

When he came out, I attached his harness back to his Flexi-leash.  We followed the new stream to the ocean and he periodically leaped in to swim and search for his golf ball. Even more amazing but at least now I had him tethered in case the moving waters overcame him.

We made it to the ocean, but never found his ball. Finally I convinced him to give it up. He seemed super proud of himself but a bit forlorn.

I tried to speed walk him away, so he would hopefully forget about the errant ball. He shook and shivered, then finally ran big wide loops around me on his long leash, apparently running to warm up.

He paraded down the beach with his head held high, like he was pretty impressed with himself. His wet fur stuck out at odd angles.

From the way he was so terrified of the ocean and any water at all,  a few short years ago to see him now, having the time of his life is just amazing.

Well, it's time for me to shuffle along, so tomorrow is a travel day to parts unknown. I'm headed in a southerly direction. It's possible I won't have internet or phone at my next stop, because I don't know where that will be.

My next reservation is 3 states and 8 days away where I will winter for a few months, so I have to come up with a plan between here and there.

There's no more room at the inn...  the campground I am at is booked solid starting tomorrow. I've only extended my stay 3 times...

My problem is I fall in love with just about every park I stay at... so I am always torn between returning to the spots I love and trying out new ones too.

Mother nature is oh so beautiful. I am super lucky and deeply thankful I woke up alive today.

Bye bye seaside, hello highway!


  1. It's too bad about Harley's golf ball but I'm glad he is safe and unafraid. Please give him a big boy pat from the Gypsy! And safe travels to you - hope you love where you will end up.

  2. Glad Harley (and you) survived that mishap... that's scary! I'd run right out and replace that golf ball!

  3. This summer while picking up litter I saved up all the spare change we found for Harley's toy fund. He picked out a box of a dozen golf balls with his little bit of savings, so now we are down to 11 balls left.


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