I was asked recently by a fellow blogger to participate in an opportunity from DogVacay – a photo sharing campaign about how your dog best represents your city and interests. I checked out her blog post about Milwaukee and her dog Sheba and thought it was terrific. However, my immediate response to the project was to say, “Thanks, but I’m not sure I would do it justice. You see, I don’t really embrace where I live right now, so maybe another time.”
Luckily, she persisted. “I think you can always find something you love somewhere,” she said.
And you know what? She’s right. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about leaving Connecticut, how fast I can make that happen, how desperate I am to be near our precious Boston again. What I haven’t been doing is appreciating what I have and where I am, or accepting the lessons I am here to learn. About seven years ago, at a going-away party before I came here, a friend said to me, “Bloom where you are planted.” I didn’t think too much about her words then. I’d never really thought much about where I lived – I just lived there and accepted it for what it was. Once I got here, it was different. I did begin to understand what I wanted out of a location – and as much as I love cows, that location did not involve the smell of cow manure in the morning, or tractors driving down the road while I was trying to get to work. But it was too bad, because I was already here. And the lessons were knocking at my door.
We live in South Windham, right on the border of Lebanon. It’s quiet on this side of town, save for one rowdy neighbor, and the proximity to Lebanon is lovely. Lebanon has a beautiful town green where we go to walk, and though it’s a small town, it’s become special to us. It was even the catalyst for my Pawsitively Organic books – it was the perfect setting.
But it took one of the smartest members of the household to point that out. When Shaggy, my beloved schnoodle, came to live here, she immediately embraced where we live. Her favorite thing to do as a puppy was walk our street and go visit the neighborhood rescue cow. She loved the cow so much, she even dressed like her one Halloween.
When it became too dangerous to walk there, we moved to the green – and she loves it. It’s her absolute favorite place. Lots to sniff, people and dogs to meet, rocks to climb on and she even gets to run with me sometimes. As soon as we turn onto the street, her ears perk up and she whines in anticipation – she can’t wait to get out of the car and hit the trail. And Finny is just happy about everything. Here they are ready to go walking.
Their attitudes are contagious. I look forward to the green, too. Lately, I’ve even found myself admiring different things about where I live as I’m driving to work, or running errands. It’s beautiful this time of year. Seven years later, I’m finally noticing. So thanks, Shaggy and Finn.
If you live around here and need a dog sitter, or are looking for doggie resources, check out the DogVacay page here. Enjoy.
And always remember to bloom where you are planted. There’s good in everything.