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Shack Whacky

I woke up this morning to a wind chill of minus 32 degrees. Didn’t we just do this two weeks ago? This is my second winter with Hope, my second dog guide and I am sure we only missed two days of walking last winter. We seem to miss two days every week lately. When she is limping after our first venture out for the morning relief, I know we are not walking that day. When I swear aloud during our first venture out, I know we are not walking anywhere that day. I am officially becoming “shack whacky”. A woman in my first class at CVC was from New Brunswick and I learned that phrase from her - I think it is a perfectly descriptive phrase for this winter!!

In my past life, I spent much of the winter in Fort Myers Beach, Florida and Finn (my first dog guide) and I would walk the beach every morning. It was mild, quiet, a gentle breeze and the sound of the waves right beside us. I do miss that part of the past life, but that is one of the few things I miss. For now, I will plug in my lighted plastic palm tree in the garage, spread a little sand on the garage floor, plug in the space heater and pretend I am south.

I would appreciate any advice regarding paw protection in this frosty weather with icy side walks, shards of ice, chunks of salt and frigid weather. If I don’t get out regularly I will move beyond “shack whacky” and that will be very, very scary.


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In my opinion, for someone to not merely endure or survive the winter, but to actually enjoy and embrace it, one needs to get out and be active.
Sports I find are good; skiing (nordic or alpine, skating, walking, snowshoeing, hiking, curling -- are all doable by persons with a visual impairment. Good for the body; good for the soul.