Monday, September 27, 2010

The Bark Park

By Belinda

The thought beckoned like a mirage in the desert throughout a day in the kitchen pie baking. It would be my reward for working hard for several hours--a trip to introduce Molson to a place he had never been and I had only heard of--the dog park in the nearby town of Bradford.
By the time I finished baking, the sky was gray and glowering and it was later in the day than I'd intended, but Molson hopped happily into the back seat of my faithful old Honda Civic with his red leash attached--always an omen of good times ahead.

A chill wind with icy drizzle did not deter me. I just hoped I could find the famed park.

I drove north along highway 11, scanning the side of the road for signs as my windshield wipers slapped from side to side and turned down a side street, worried that I'd gone too far. A red van seemed to be following me. I turned off at the nearest intersection intending on turning around, and the van pulled up beside me, the driver inside motioning to me to roll down my window.

"You're looking for the Bark Park aren'tcha?" said the perceptive young man, looking at my backseat passenger. I admitted that I was. He gave me directions then drove off and I headed back onto the highway, thankful for our knight in a shiny red van.

I had no idea what to expect when I got there, except that I knew the rule was no leashes and clean up your dog's mess.

The moment I let Molson out of the car he seemed to smell fun and he headed into the park with a look of intense purpose.

At the gate a group of dogs already inside the park dashed over to greet the new boy and he was swarmed by smiling dogs of all shapes and sizes!

Molson was a bit unsure of how to handle all of the attention, but soon joined in the ritual sniffing and playful leaping at one another.

The dogs' people stood in a cluster enjoying the fun their dogs were having. It didn't matter that it was miserable weather and that the dogs were getting muddier by the minute. There were smiles on our faces just watching them.
What an amazing investment the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury and the local business sponsors, made in giving us this park.
I have grandchildren who love to visit the park but now there'll be a dog who'll be begging for a trip to his park too.


Theresa said...

What a great park. I have two Boxers who would be in Heaven! I have to ask...when the guy gave you directions, was there a moment when you prayed that he wasn't a serial killer??? Please tell me that I am not the only paranoid woman who thinks this way?! Haha!

Belinda said...

Theresa, yes! I did wonder why he seemed to be following me and then slowed down alongside me. The afternoon being gray and stormy and the rain coming was all like a scene from a thriller. :)

Maybe your boxers and Molson could have a play date! :)