Fri 04, May, 2018
Today has been the most interesting day I’ve had in a long time. One of my companions approached me in my chair while I was napping, and what I assumed was the usual due attention turned out to be the installation of some sort of contraption that covered my chest and had straps that went under my legs and attached behind my shoulders. I heard them call it a harness. I didn’t mind; it wasn’t uncomfortable. I was then carried out past the big front desk, and then, to my absolute surprise, through the big doors and into the great unknown.
The rush of air in my face took my breath away for a moment, and my eyes were dazzled by the sunshine. I must have voiced my astonishment, because they used their gentle tones that they use to calm animals here. I admit that I was uneasy; so many smells and sounds and feels were overwhelming at first. They carried me a little way off across the parking lot and set me down on the grass. The feel of the earth beneath my toes drew back distant memories of times long past. Steady, but cool and soft from yesterday’s rain. I had forgotten how much I loved having my feet on bare ground. The grass bent under every step, and I could feel the plant fibers crush slightly under my weight. I made my way carefully under a nearby tree and sniffed a low hanging branch. I paused for a moment to revel in the scent of the fresh, green growth. I heard a birdsong, clear and sweet, ring through the open air as I have not heard in a very long time. Each of my senses felt sharper, and I felt the stir of instincts that I rarely need these days.
Suddenly, a roaring beast entered the parking lot behind us and I nearly jumped out of my skin. It was huge, and making sounds that nature did not intend an animal to make. Was it a bear? I have heard stories of bears, huge and lumbering and capable of making such low grumbling and loud roars. My friends attempted to quell my fear, but they failed to explain the nature of the beast that was so near. After a minute or two, it roared away again, and I heard them call it a “fedextruck,” something with which I am not familiar and which I made mental note to put into the Google later. Whatever it was, I do not think that I care much for fedextrucks.
With peace restored, I ventured along the grassy bank. I could see the hospital not far away, and I found comfort in that bearing. A mysterious phenomenon kept me from wandering farther than a certain distance from my companions, and it took me a few minutes to discover that they held a long tether attached to my harness. No matter; they followed wherever I went. I explored under a few different kinds of trees, and cut a trail through a low bush. I was pretty rugged, I must say. I suppose it is the natural tendency for a handsome fellow such as myself to also be robust. I wound my way through some very tall grasses, and I think I felt what it must be like to be an African lion.
Then I was again picked up and carried across the parking area, back toward the doors of the hospital. They put me down on the pavement and opened the doors for me to walk inside. I was embraced by familiar smells and sounds and the calm atmosphere of my home. I returned to my chair, where I now sit, cleaning my paws and contemplating this adventure. So much exertion has left me quite tired, I admit. But I did appreciate the stimulation of my faculties that resulted from our constitutional. I wouldn’t mind a repeat of the adventure, and I find myself wondering if this will be a regular occurrence…