As I mentioned, we have seen that Siri enjoys the water. She jumps up and down and splashes and sticks her butt in and bites at the water and practically starts singing. Until she gets in too deep. That’s when toys are lost as we watch them drift away because Siri is back on the shore rolling in the grass.
Perhaps swimming is not genetically coded along with the love of water. I thought the doggy paddle was a pretty natural thing but Siri looks like she’s trying to walk on the water and, as much as I’d like to think she does, she actually can’t. She’s left looking spastic as she tries to get a foothold on the surface and people have threatened to call that ASPCA if we don’t stop chucking her in. So, it was decided that swimming lessons were in order.
McFuzz and I took her for her first swimming lesson yesterday which, coincidentally, was partnered with her first boat trip. We rented a canoe to take about seven miles down the St. Croix River. This was a canoe trip I’ve made many times in my life and I was thrilled to share it with my boy and my girl.
We looked like pros. Strutting to the landing with our gear and the cool dog that jumped right into the water. This image of cool, which was certainly only in my mind, was shaken when we had to physically lift the 60 pound dog and drop her into the middle of the boat while repeating our new mantra “stay, stay, stay” as we shoved off.
Okay. We’re in the boat. We’re paddling. We’re doing great. Sense of coolness returning…
Then we hit the rock. And were, momentarily, going backward. And then, as if on cue, Siri began to do something like this…
…right before she stepped out of the boat. And she is not exactly graceful. As my mother would say, “too tippy”. We stabilized the boat and then McFuzz stepped out to throw Siri back in. More stabilizing necessary. And, while the water was only about a foot and a half deep in this particular section of river, I was suffering a silent heart attack while I waited for my dog to be sucked into the strong current that existed only in my mind.
The rest of the day was pretty uneventful, which was perfect. She got some swimming lessons and, although she still appears to be having some sort of spastic attack, she’s getting better. She even ventured into “the deep end” of her own volition more than once.
Sometime’s there’s no natural talent for the thing you really love. Just keep flailing until things click. And if they don’t click, climb back on shore and roll in the grass. You always have options.