The Inugami Mochi

IMG_20180530_092346We went for another walk this morning, a few hours after our first one because he was getting a bit antsy. He’d done his little half-squat spinny dance shortly after 5am, but a noise distracted him and that was it, it wasn’t going to happen, so when he began to shift awkwardly and stare longingly at me later I reckoned it wasn’t out of love or joy to be with me. He does things like that quite often, mind you, and it’s lovely to be able to understand him now when he talks to me. I packed a little bag and out we went. I enjoy the longer morning walks before the sun gets too high and the air too warm, and it wasn’t a chore to let him have his way. I’ve found that on weekdays this sleepy little village on the shore is really quite nice.

Spiderman was at the park again at the foot of Albert Street, and we waved to each other as I headed down the Tay Trail to another one, one without a slip of beach or a boat ramp or people I didn’t feel much like chatting with, but with a bench to sit on and enjoy the view out past the point that marks our little body of water and to Georgian Bay proper. There it’s mostly dead trees and long grass coming out of the water near shore. The sounds of the village and the traffic on the highway that skirts its southern border are muted, and instead you hear birds. Lots of birds. You hear the water, and more readily feel the presence it has. I sat on the bench and locked the extendable lead at its longest so Rix would have room to move about, but he just sat, and eventually lay down in the grass near my feet. I’d brought a book with me, one that I’d breezed through last year but promised myself to read again when I was more able to fully enjoy not only the slap-you-in-the-face-with-a-fish themes, but the more beautifully subtle nuances of the story. We’ve settled a bit more since our big move from the city, so the time seemed right.

As a big fan of e-readers for the convenience not only of having a library in your pocket but of being able to buy or borrow books without putting on pants, I’m going to admit something I never thought I would: I am coming back to the print and paper fold. Printed books are easier to love, to fall into a story and its characters, easier just to read. This time I am re-reading The Inugami Mochi, By Jessamyn Smyth, inscribed to both Rix and I and gifted to us by the author. I’ve never felt qualified to give reviews, so I just don’t, but I do love this one.

After a time, the little black dog with three legs, so patiently waiting by me, let out a frustrated whine. He wanted to get back at it; To sniff the tall grass at the edge of the trail, maybe eat some of the younger shoots, or piss on a growth of dandelions and get their fluff all over his face. I continued on until I’d finished the chapter, then sat for a few moments to mindfully savour the space we were in. An older couple in a small aluminum skiff were trolling further out on the bay, and a big power cruiser, probably doing the same though I couldn’t tell from here, was moving slowly off the opposite shore. A family of Canadian Geese swam into view from behind the camouflage of a bush, two parents and a gaggle of still fluffy gosling’s between them, and not more than a few feet away was a loon swimming perfectly in parallel with them. Another family followed, then two geese with no babies, and that made me a bit sad.

We ran into Spiderman standing by the liquor store on our way home, waiting for it to open, and I paid him for the Nike sandals he’d found by the boat launch but didn’t fit him and offered to me for two bucks a couple days ago. I gave him five, because, I told him, I didn’t feel like breaking it.

 


51kK6lkAvvL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_The Inugami Mochi By Jessamyn Smyth

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