Notre chien de pays apprend à vivre à Montréal...

One of the more complicated factors in adjusting to our sabbatical in Montreal has to do with the fact that we have a COUNTRY dog and we're living in the CITY. Lucie, who is nervous and neurotic by nature, is accustomed to the quiet of our home in the Berkshires - and the loving gentle farm of John and Lauryn. She is NOT used to air brakes on big buses. Or lots of people on bicycles. Or running little children. Or our loud dishwasher. Or people walking by on the street. Or almost anything else related to urban life.  Poor baby... let's just say she is often distressed. (Right now as I am writing, she is hiding under my desk at my feet because that wicked dishwasher is making too much noise!)

So, four days into this adventure, we took her to the doggie park nearby, Parc Fontaine, where we can let her run. She needs to run - the more exercise she gets, the happier she is - and the less wiggy. We have a ways to go before she feels at home here. But at least she's learning to pee and poop without too much fuss now. And it won't be long before she is able to run and frolic in Parc Fontaine. Peu en peu as the locals say.

This afternoon was given to writing (for me) and pictures (for Di.) Then I got a chance to practice some scales and riffs on my bass. I am easing into the groove with that bad boy this week but it felt GREAT to be playing after four weeks off. I've only be at the upright for two years. In fact, it was pointed out to me yesterday that it was almost exactly two years ago since I was kindly given my first upright bass by dear friends at church. When the serendipity of that sunk in I was humbled and grateful. And also aware that what was once terrifying and daunting has now become more and more comfortable. In the last six months especially, I can say, "I'm starting to make this happen and enjoy it." (Di posted this clip of me starting to get my bearings...)

I've got a LONG way to go, but let me say that playing each week with Carlton at church has been a real gift. So now it is on to some serious practice and playing each day so that at the end of all this I've been able to kick it up a notch or two. We are off to Diese Onze tonight to take in some Eclectic Django because Dianne loves her some gypsy jazz...

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