Monday through Friday, you will find Esty and me on our morning walk through the neighborhood. Esty mostly leads the way, unless she must read the latest doggy news on a hydrant, a cactus in front of the house where the pot-bellied pig used to live, or the palm tree that – as the realtor flyer said – “once might have belonged to Hollywood Megastar Drew Barrymore".
We leave between 7:30 and 8:30, not being the type of morning walkers, you can set your watch by. It all depends on how long we cuddle in the bed, on the number of urgent Emails in my inbox, and on whether I need a coffee first before we start.
Our neighborhood is a short bike ride from a beach at the Pacific Ocean. Its wide streets are lined with pepper, palm, and citrus trees. In our backyard, Esty guards Hummingbirds zipping back and forth between flowers, bushes, and an orange tree. Seagulls glide across the blue sky and, above them, passenger and private planes.
Most mornings we turn right and walk past the neighbor’s house where Chihuahua puppy Cloé watches from the window, then past old-timer Trixie’s place whose owner is a master at finding the exact spot where Esty needs a scratch, and past the yellow house with tomatoes and corn growing in the front yard.