I miss my walks with Kali. There are times when I find myself missing the days when it was just Kali and I. Kali and I and our Creek Trail.
We still lived in the Bay Area town of Livermore when Kali joined the pack. There was a trail through the neighborhood that ran along a small creek and a local 9 hole golf course. The trail head was at the end of our street. Kali and I walked that trail almost every day and it became a very special place for us.
I don’t miss the Bay Area for a second. But I do miss our Creek Trail and our daily walks along it!
Kali and I got to know each other on our Creek Trail. She was great on a leash except when other dogs passed by which made her nervous. We eventually worked through that issue. In retrospect it was one of many ways that we gained a deeper understanding of one another. The pace of our walks was great. She was a little prissy and had a cute lightness to her walk. I recall one time taking her for a walk with a friend and my friend says, “look – she prances”. So although not athletic she was very light on her feet. Like a dancer…
I think what I miss most about our walks are the long talks Kali and I had along the way. Under all circumstances Kali and I were in regular communication with each other; especially during the first several months and especially when we walked. I used words and gestures. Kali used her eyes and body language and sometimes a grunt or a small bark. We learned each other and learned from each other. Over the years I realized that I learned much more from Kali than she from me. She was a great teacher!
Sometimes we walked in silence. Walks where we were just together. Words, gestures, or body language wasn’t necessary. I loved those times when our cadence and rhythm were in total sync. We walked in total peace, as one, and side by side.
In 2016 we moved to Tuolumne City; a rural community in the Sierra Nevada Foothills. Our walks became different. We would walk on dirt and gravel roads under majestic pine and oak trees. Homes were not side by side in this neighborhood. Instead they were set back off the road on parcels of two to three acres or more. Wildlife was much more evident. On the Creek Trail we regularly saw geese and ducks. Along our new walking venue we would encounter black tail deers, wild turkeys, and farm animals: pigs, goats and horses and cows. One would think that all the new sights, and especially the smells, would have been like a smorgasbord for Kali. But just as when Kali arrived in Livermore from Taiwan -and immediately assimilated- she seemed to do the same in Tuolumne. She pranced along our walks with a calm demeanor as if she had lived here all her life.
As the years passed Kali and I walked less and less – both in frequency and distance. Her legs were no longer very strong and her hip displaysia became more of a factor. Kali was always eager to have out and about time with me (and I with her) so she of course jumped (figuratively not literally cause remember her hips 🙂 ) at the chance to go on walks. But the pace became slower, there were more stops along the way and I often had to coax her to move along.
Eventually the walks stopped completely and Kali began sleeping much of the day. We always found time to be together just to the two of us. During those times we talked and reminisced about our Creek Trail. And sometimes we just sat in silence. And our cadence and rhythm were in total sync. We were together and at peace.
From the day Kali came into my life, whether we were walking along our Creek Trail in Livermore, navigating the rural roads around the Golden K, or just sitting in silence on the deck looking out at a warm evening sky, my Golden Kali and I were always been in sync. Same cadence and same rhythm. And same heartbeat.
KALI AND OUR CREEK TRAIL, LIVERMORE CA
I cried as I read your beautiful memories of walks with Kali and looked at her pretty photos. My walks with Harper Lee became shorter, slower, and less frequent in her final months. I told people we encountered on our walks that we were really on more of a stroll. I told myself that when the weather cooled, we’d go out more often. She didn’t make it to the cooler weather. I’m lucky to have Tallulah and Birdie as walking partners, but I miss those strolls with Miss Lee.
~Tallulah and Birdie’s mommy
We have walked a common path with our fur-babies and continue to. Reading my own words reminds me that I need to carve out one on one time with Kloe and Koda. They are almost never apart which is great – they rely on each other. But they too deserve to have special time with dad by themselves. Take care and be well!
Spot on. Bing! has been gone nearly 3 years now and I miss our daily, most times, twice daily outings. These walks always belonged to Bing!, we did whatever he wanted, at whatever pace he set. I believed it encouraged good mental health ( for us both ) and kept him in the loop of his world ~ as if he was checking his email, or posting a little comment… Cheers, ol’
Kali was much bigger than Bing! so she posted much larger “comments” along our walks… 🙂 Thanks Marty for walking along with Golden Kali and I over the years. Take care!
Such precious memories you shared with Kali (and now with us). Thank you, Michael for letting us enjoy your sweet girl.
Great Post Michael. Ray and I had a little “moment” the other day which I suspect I will always remember. He was curled up in “his” chair and, as I passed, he rolled over inviting a tummy rub. I squatted down right next to him and stroked his tummy, and my face would have been around 10-12″ from his face. He lifted a front paw and gently placed it on my shoulder. Such a little thing perhaps, but very deliberate on his part … and so memorable to me.
As you know, more so than I do, these little “moments” will endear our dogs to us long after they have passed on. I can imagine that you have many readers who would have loved to meet Kali. Regards. Colin.
What a tender moment with Ray. Although I imagine Ray would say, “what a tender moment I had with Colin. He’s definitely a keeper.” And yes these moments are treasures that transcend time. Take care!