I spend a nice leisurely Sunday morning with my son. We set out for a walk to the mailbox. It turned into a meandering stroll. I set him on the ground, and let him lead the way. Lets just say he hasnt learned the concept about shortest distance between two points.... It was more like an ever-changing non-directional walk toward whatever caught his attention. Its an informal, inexact survey, but I would say his favorite distraction was trees. He often wandered towards trees. We stopped to examine quite a few trees. But here is the problem. These trees are planted in soil, separated from the asphalt road by a 6" tall curb. A six inch tall obstacle is a little much to overcome for a little guy who is only 20-something inches tall himself. Being so self-sufficent, when Casey was confronted with a curb, he just crawled up it, and continued to crawl to the tree. But this put him at ground level as he played with the trees. Now, picture for a second what dogs do when they see trees.. Pee on it... More precisely, pee on the tree.. right at ground level.. or slightly above, in which case the pee drips to.... ground level. For some reason, this thought popped into my head as I was watching my little guy paw at the tree bark and comb thru the dirt at the base of the trees.
After taking frequent breaks to examine the trees, we continued on to the mailbox. Right across the driveway from the mailboxes is a small pond with a waterfall. Casey is attracted by the sound of the waterfall, and begins to meander that way. Mail in hand, I follow slightly behind him, and let him venture whatever direction he wants to go. He heads straight for the water... and would have walked right on in, if I didn't grab him at the last possible instant! He was enthralled with the water, the sound, the reflection, the shimmer... I sat him on a tree branch that extended over the water.. and gently rocked the branch as he sat and stared at the water.
After a while, we started to head home. There was some vehicle traffic, so I picked him up and carried him about half way home. Then, I put him down.. and he headed back in the direction we just came from.. I listened, and could hear the water... Evidently, so could he, cause that little guy was walking with a purpose! By now, our adventure was about 1 hour old, so I picked him up and carried him the rest of the way to the garage. Once there, I put him down... and he promptly walked back outside. I let him venture out on his own... keeping a watchful eye on him from about 10-20' behind. He located a curb, successfully navigated his way over the curb onto the grassy area. This grassy area isnt exactly level, but it's close.. At least to me. To him, it might have felt as steep as a black diamond ski run.. But he attempted to walk down the slope...
Then he fell... face first.. on the concrete curb, and onto the asphalt roadway. There he lay, flat on his back, arms spread out. I ran over to him and scooped him into my arms.. And examined his nose.. It was scraped, and drew blood. I could see lateral abrasions, where he scraped his little nose against the curb as he fell.
But the tough guy was FINE! Just a little superficial scrape.