I often find myself looking up, not really knowing why. Sometimes it’s as though I am looking for the wind and always trying to see it.The trees offer me a suggestive response with a flapping leaf or a bending branch. The wind acts as a obscure time piece, and like temperature, the wind is affected by the sun directly and indirectly. The wind does respond to time in a sort of celestial manner. My dog Manny often looks up when I do when the wind blows, he joins in and looks somewhat introspective while doing so. I then try to draw a mental picture in my mind of what the nearest piece of trout laden water is doing. If my dog could fish we would do so often since both of us have a certain zest for solitude and running water. Unfortunately Manny will never bare an opposable thumb so the idea of meandering about with him in streams grasping fly rods is somewhat wishful thinking. Although there is an orthopedic surgeon that I know of nearby that could pull this surgery off, maybe I could trade him a fly rod for such a surgery? Needed: one left thumb, in good condition, preferably a furry one. The surgeon also happens to be a fly fisherman so I don’t think he would deliberate over the procedure too long. Manny would only need one thumb on his left front paw because he seems to have the temperament of a left handed caster. If you watch this Golden Retriever he seems to sense ghosts in running water. He watches the eddies, reflections, and riffles with a certain kind of introspection and turns his head one way then the next as if he is taking shorthand notes. I chime in and say “whatcha see Manny”, he then responds with a sorrowful look and ends up sticking his head fully underwater, much like a Blue Heron would looking for a crayfish.
If our minutes are measured in hours in dog time then their pondering is much more drawn out than ours making them masters of internal conversations and thoughtful doggy introspection. It also makes them much more aware and perceptive than human beings. I am convinced that dogs and trout have this ability and are the real masters of our universe for this reason. Our arrogant sense of time simply caters to our lack of focus and harmony with the natural world. We are mislead by time, we base everything on the speed of two hands in a circle. We need to slow our clocks down or just simply throw them all away. If every human minute was equivalent to an hour in canine time we would understand why our furry friends are so attentive and understanding.They live seemingly shorter lives because they live on a different clock all together.
While we embrace time that we’ve been subserviently checking all our lives, we can actually embrace the notion that we spend less time exercising our senses and more time dealing with meaningless distractions based on the relative speed of a clock. We accelerate ourselves for somebody else’s invention. We’ve all haven been given a time handicap. Nearly everything follows sheepishly an unchanged time piece. We are slaves to two hands in a circle. Humans use to live shorter because they spent more hours being useful and partaking in meaningful activity, souls satiated early, no need to live longer, the spirits take them once they have proven their worthiness into the next life. An interesting notion when looking at it from a spiritual standpoint. I had this discussion with a very thoughtful and creative furniture designer many years ago. I suppose this also embraces the notion that “the good die young”. When our dogs are staring introspectively into running water and chasing ghosts are they playing or are they fully focused, and practicing and passing through for some kind of meaningful life lesson portal? Growing up on the ocean and watching animals in and out of the water most of my life has planted this notion in my head over the years. I’m convinced that spending time on the water actually extends your life considerably. Our senses align with a natural time delay, and like our furry and finned friends, we too can momentarily cycle side by side with their god given clocks.
~Clint Joseph Bova
“You do not cease to fish because you get old,
You get old because you cease to fish”