Jack and I haven’t been to the park for a while, so we thought we’d take a stroll around the duck pond today. We went expecting our usual quiet, contemplative walk but found a dusty, noisy construction site instead. The city has finally decided to fix the small concrete bridge that links the park across Cedar Creek, and the sound of heavy machinery and jackhammering filled the park. The construction also meant that Jack and I had to content ourselves with half of the duckpond, so we chose the east side because there’s less goose poop. We went slowly to accommodate Jack’s stiffening hips and shoulders, but he was full of curiosity, and his nose didn’t stop. Every fallen leaf was thoroughly assessed, and as we moved along, Jack would look up and bark harmlessly at the geese. It was more “Hello!” than “Hey, you!” and the geese knew it, and didn’t flinch. Despite the noise and gloomy skies, we enjoyed the outing and lingered by the pond while discussing the coming winter. Jack has been asking for an electric blanket, and his argument is sound, so I’m going to order one for him as a surprise. Maybe he’ll let me share it now and then. But the winter is still off on the horizon, and for today we’ll just occupy this moment of colourful, beautiful fall.