I love my job. I love getting paid to read. I love the lifestyle the schedule allows me to have. No evenings. No weekends. And because I work on a compressed schedule, I get a long weekend every other week. This past weekend was one such weekend.

Typically I use my Mondays off to run errands, do chores, and catch up with friends. Yesterday, I ended up doing a LOT of catch up, with 4 different people, and a dog (like a real one)! It may sound tiring, but my day was well-paced, and I kept up surprisingly well. After meeting up with Andrea (who works a compressed schedule that coincides with mine), I bussed out to Kerrisdale with meet up with Sandy. She brought along Polo, her adorable golden retriever. It was weird to see Polo active because I have ever only seen him loafing about at Sandy’s house, entreating visitors to pet him.

We took a seat by the front window at Cafe Artigiano so we could keep a watchful eye on Polo tied a bench on the sidewalk. Polo has been kidnapped before, so Sandy is very protective of him. After our coffees, Sandy invited me to come along to a nearby off-leash dog park. This is the infamous park where Sandy has met some very interesting people, so I was curious to see this piece of important geography in Sandy’s life.

We got there late in the afternoon, and it was quite the sight to behold! I counted 18 frisky dogs, big and small, zipping around the field. It was a bit unreal, there was so much energy and excitement vibrating from the dogs. I don’t know all my breeds, but there were a couple yellow labs, a bulldog, a dalmatian, a husky, and a border collie mix out there. I have never seen SO many dogs in one place apart from the Superdog show at the PNE.

The dog owners were a bit unreal too. Noticing that they greeted each new arrival on the scene, I was amazed that everyone knew each other’s names as well the dogs’ names. It was also amusing to see many of the owners milling about, carrying a chuck-it, like it was part of the fashion of being in a dog park. I asked Sandy about this evidently tight connection among the group, and she acknowledged that it does seem a bit cultish.

If you are ever looking for an unusual but social and fun place to be, I highly recommend visiting the dog park near you.