What a difference a week makes….

I took another walk today, with Stormy the Wonder Dog, who does the funniest thing whenever I say the word walk. In fact, I cannot even SAY the word unless my intent is serious, because his little shih tzu heart could not possibly stand the torture. If we don’t intend to WALK, we must spell W-A-L-K. Even then, he is cluing in because he does that doggy head bobble thing, looking from one human to the other, with a “I know you’re up to something” look. It isn’t only W-A-L-Ks that get to Stormy, of course. He also likes to go in the C-A-R. Keys jingling set him off into a tizzy that he can barely contain.

Back to walking and the funny thing Stormy does. Whenever he hears the word walk, he immediately runs to the drawer where his leash is stored, and if it is even slightly ajar, he manages to get his leash out. When I put the leash on HIM, he turns and bites at it until he has it firmly in his mouth, and off he goes, proudly trotting with the leash in his mouth, him taking ME for a walk–or so he thinks.

He was happy that I wasn’t spelling W-A-L-K today. It’s Sunday again, but things were not quite so quiet this week as they were last week. I picked the time that about six of the local wards dismissed and so there was quite a bit of traffic. In fact, I happened upon one of the oddities of Utah life. See the picture below as proof.

No, this is not a parking lot, and Mormons don’t generally have this many vehicles. What is happening here is a Mormon gathering. “What?” you might ask. “Mormons gather on Sundays for gatherings? I thought that was verboten!” No, no, relax, Mormons do not gather on Sundays except for Mormon-type gatherings. Since it is late September, the cars here could only mean one thing. Either a missionary was returning or leaving, and whenever this occurs, in addition to doling out money on a monthly basis so their offspring can do the Lord’s work, Mormon parents are required to have the entire ward over both before they leave and after they return, and serve them chicken salad sandwiches, sheet cake and jello salads with all manner of strange ingredients. It’s in the Mormon bylaws. I promise. I almost bailed from my walk and sauntered in just to see if they had funeral potatoes, which are GOOO-OOOOD, but I would not have blended. If you look closely at the arrow, you will see that those people are attired in Church-going gear. In order to Missionary Farewell/Homecoming crash, one must be dressed properly. So no funeral potatoes for me.

The second daughter, who normally accompanies me on my walks, was absent today as she chose to go to the movies with her older sister and two friends. Sunday is a REALLY good day to go to the movies in Utah, because you can pick any seat you want, babies do not cry throughout the movie, and there is no long line for $40 worth of refreshments. Sunday is also a good day to go to the local amusement park, for the same reason. No Mormons are there. Now I don’t really have a problem with Mormons being there, but my point is that it is NOT crowded. That’s about the only time you will find me in a movie theatre or at an amusement park. I don’t like crowds. Sunday would pretty much be a good day to do anything, except you can’t, because most things are closed. But the movies are not, and so youngest and oldest daughter went to the movies. I know, I know, the damn heathens, but keep this in mind. They went to see JUST LIKE HEAVEN. Ya gotta admit, that’s close.

Back to the walk. Just a week ago I posted pictures of the Wasatch Mountains as the colors began to change. It’s dramatically different this week, as you can see below. I love fall walks. So does Stormy.

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About Natalie R. Collins

Natalie has more than 30 years writing, editing, proofreading and design experience. She has written 20 books (and counting), has worked for the Sundance Film Festival, and as an investigative journalist, editor, and proofreader. She embraces her gypsy-heart and is following her new free-thinking journey through life. Follow her as she starts over and learns a bunch of life's lessons--some the hard way.
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