The snow beneath my skis is fast and I glide along smoothly. Behind me I can hear Coopie panting and the sound of his paws crunching the slightly icy snow. The sounds begin to fade as I fly down a hill, trees rushing past.
I shake my left ski pole, jangling the cow bell attached to it as loudly as I can. My head is beginning to drown under the sound, but my fear of loosing Coopie is greater than my discomfort. I take a corner and slow down.
I glance back and can see Coopie’s round, reddish brown body between the trees. He is running for all he is worth, his bum bouncing all over and his ears perky. I shake the pole again.
The bell is how he is finding me.
He comes to a crashing halt into the back of my legs. No worries about loosing him today!
This last week my mum has been in Hawaii with her family, so A and I have been hanging with Coopie, her dog. While I’ve been at work all week A has been hanging out with Cooper, which means mostly watching him sleep on the couch while applying for jobs. Such a hard life, I know.
Well, this morning we decided to change things up by taking Cooper for a ski. Now, for those of you who don’t know, Coopie is blind, blind to the point that he thinks I am the refrigerator if I am standing in the kitchen talking to him (which, I might add, is slightly offensive, as the fridge is a great deal larger than I am!).
Despite his vision problems, my mum skis with Cooper fairly regularly but I have to say, skiing with him is at least as great of an adventure, if not more so, than running is with him. We are pretty slow runners usually, so it is easier to keep track of Cooper. On skis, however, we outmatch him by far and in the woods it is so easy for him to get lost. So, we use bells and a whistle so that he can always hear us.
This morning we couldn’t find his usual bells, but we found my cow bell from when I skied competitively and used it to cheer on my team. So, geared up with the bell, off we went to the trails and I have to say, while I drove myself, A and everyone within half a mild crazy with it, we did not loose Cooper, not even once. He nearly ran headlong into a tree, toed the edge of the trail a few too many times and ate it once in a drift, but he did great!
So, to all the other skiers out today, I am sorry for ruining the wonderful ambiance of the mountain. Just know that I am not trying to disrupt your ski. Rather, I am being a seeing-eye human for my cute little Cooper.