Thursday, October 27, 2011

Older Dog Wisdom: Grace 5 - Hawk!

As Grace, Tux, and I walked along the park path minding our own business as well as Grace and Tux doing their business, a hawk came swooping out of a nearby tree and dipped low. Only Grace noticed it. Tux was busy ascertaining whether a grasshopper was a serious threat to the security of his family.
Grace followed the flight pattern of the hawk. It was by far the largest bird she’d ever seen. When the hawk settled gracefully on a large branch of a nearby tree, Grace watched it. When it didn’t take flight again, Grace lost interest. She moved closer to her brother and nudged him with her nose as if to say, “Did you see that?” He, of course, was oblivious, but to be supportive of his sister, he looked around with a look that clearly said, “Huh? What?” Grace rolled her eyes and turned away. She glanced at the hawk still on its branch, still watching us.
I assumed the hawk was trying to decide how to get the tasty-looking black cocker spaniel, with just enough meat on her bones to be juicy, back to its nest. I didn’t like the way the hawk was tracking Grace and so decided it was time to depart the scene before the hawk could figure out the logistics of kidnapping Grace. 
Grace, too, seemed to be aware of the hawk’s intention. As we made our way back along the path toward where we’d left the car, I noticed Gracie glancing over her shoulder. We moved up the walkway with more speed than we generally move at that hour of the morning.
When we finally rounded the corner, we were out of sight of the hawk. Grace and I visibly relaxed, and Tux wanted to know why we were slowing down. He was more interested in getting to the car and getting back home to his breakfast. 
As we sauntered along the path, the hawk came by for yet another look at the tempting tidbit ambling along the walkway. Grace had seen it too and began pulling on the leash in an effort to get us to the car faster or, at least, to the path with its leafy canopy. Since Grace is not a hurrier, I picked up the pace. 
Soon, we were racing (well, for us, it was racing, for others it might have looked more like a lively saunter) for the car. I couldn’t get Grace and Tux into the car fast enough. Or myself, for that matter. 
We’ll never know if the hawk figured out the physics of picking up and flying off with an object that weighed three times what he did. Probably not. Hopefully not. One never knows though. Better to be safely at home than fighting hawks, I say.

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