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Surprisingly, or perhaps not so, the most immediate impact that Beedoo! has had on my life is not that of herself, but that of her dog Kayenta. She has introduced into my life the concept of the walk, and walk it definately is! The small walks are barely noticeable, but then there is the long walk. The long walk goes out the condo, accross the grass, accross the big street, past the graveyard, past the little park (and the bird hospital), accross the other big street, past the water, accross the field with the pond, then around the field with the windmill and the cows, past the playground, accross the street back to the little park, and then a retrace of our steps past the graveyard and back to the condo. Whew!

For Kayenta this seems to be the best time of the day ever! She tugs at the leash, runs back and forth and generally ignores all commands that aren't repeated at least four times because she is too distracted by the awesomeness of the long walk. Of course, by the time we get back she can barely stand on her four legs anymore...

And then there are the dogs. Though Beedoo! seems to have a better handle on her than me, to me Kayenta's reaction to other dogs seems pretty random, ranging from 'We're best buds!', through 'Hi!' right down to 'This is my graveyard! Find your own!'. In everything she is enthusiastic, though. And most people who we meet seem to like her. But then, she is pretty likeable!

And I haven't even mentioned the cats and the ducks yet...

Kayenta still hasn't really grasped the concept that the leash effects people on BOTH ends of it. Lately, when we go for walks, she has a case of the "zoomies," and she takes off across the field as soon as she's done peeing. This results in the person holding the leash at the time either being yanked off their feet or just about dislocating their shoulder. This is a bit of a connundrum... I want her to be able to run, because it's the only exercise she gets... but I don't want to let her off leash either, because I'm afraid she won't come back when I call her, or otherwise get in trouble (fights with other dogs... there seem to be quite a few really aggressive ones around this area; chasing cats, traffic, etc). So for now, just putting up with it seems like the best solution. o.0

Arno seems to like the walks as well. They're a time to wind down from his day and talk with me for 40 minutes straight about various issues. Since I don't talk much, this works out well.

As Arno mentioned, there are several interesting landmarks on our big walk. We pass a very beautiful cemetary (though you probably couldn't tell it was one, as the headstones are not visible from either of the bordering streets), then a bird hospital, from which issue an interesting variety of squawks and trills, changing on a daily basis. On one of our walks, we met a woman who works at the Vogehospitaal, originally from Britain. She encouraged me in my decision to stay in the Netherlands.

Next on our walk, as we cross a 5-point intersection, we enter a large field where dogs are allowed off-leash. (Kayenta, however, isn't allowed... yet.) There are often children and dogs playing about here, and occasionally people fishing in the small pond. The field is bordered by a canal (which Kayenta fell into when she wasn't being careful on one of her early walks). We are often also amused by the canal surrounding the field, which is full of ducks and grebes, and lately also ducklings and grebelets. Kayenta likes chasing the ducks into the water and antagonizing the big swans that occasionally visit the pond, and unfortunately, also likes rolling in swan crap.

On the other side of the canal is a small "island" with a small Dutch windmill and another good-sized field which takes up approximately 3/4 of a city block. Recently, six brown and white Holstein cows have been moved into the area, we assume to graze down the grass... or to provide hamburgers to the sports center across the street. Kayenta only really noticed the cows yesterday, and didn't seem to know what to make of them.

The sports center is interesting in itself... it seems a popular place, and there are usually large groups of people there for events or training. Usually we see teams practicing korf-ball (which is almost like basketball) and baseball (which humorously translates to "honkball"), and occasionally a large truck toting nothing but billboards and obnoxiously loud speakers shows up when events are starting.

As we continue around the field, we pass a playground, which has all sorts of neat climbers and whirling swings and so on. Arno and I often wish we were kids again and could go play on this neat stuff they have these days. ;p

So basically, we never have the same walk twice, with all this interesting stuff around.