“I will wait for you.”
I can only imagine the wonders that Buddy enjoys in the woods of Balsamea every day and night, with his great capacity for scent, hearing, and night vision.
When he stops in the trail to investigate something, I wait. It’s the least I can do for all the times he waits while I do things in my never-ending pursuit of amateur silviculture, naturalism, and trail tending. Come to think of it, he spends most of his time waiting for me.
There never has been and never will be a friend so patient, so tolerant, so forgiving, so playful, and so nice to pet. A good dog is medicine for mind and body. Cats, too. But you can’t take cats for a hike, and they’re generally not so big on tug-of-war and keep-away with a stick, in all seasons and all weather.
It is just like man’s vanity and impertinence to call an animal dumb because it is dumb to his dull perceptions. Heaven is by favor; if it were by merit your dog would go in and you would stay out. Of all the creatures ever made he (man) is the most detestable. Of the entire brood, he is the only one…that possesses malice. He is the only creature that inflicts pain for sport, knowing it to be pain. The fact that man knows right from wrong proves his intellectual superiority to the other creatures; but the fact that he can do wrong proves his moral inferiority to any creature that cannot. ― Mark Twain
Go ahead. Call me a misanthrope. I do. Buddy and Balsamea help make it only a moderate case. No worse than Twain’s, though perhaps growing. The more time I spend taking refuge alone with Buddy at Balsamea, the less time I’m inclined to spend with people.
A nice thing about the Internet is that I can have friends around the world just a click away but I don’t have to accommodate them in my house (nor they me). Still, it is a good idea to keep one nearby in the flesh, for the other seat in the canoe. Until I get that electric canoe motor.