Epic Journey

Yesterday started out entirely normally.  Walk the dog, go to work, come home, walk the dog and his blonde girlfriend, etc.  I know, my life is indeed that glamorous!  Feel free to be jealous.

like this, but with chairs! ... bevanh.com

But then, after this oh-so-normal day, I felt a twitch in my legs, a twinge of muscles ordering me to GO FORTH, DO MORE STUFF.  The finally gorgeous weather, combined with my severely under-used muscles,  was drawing me back outside.  I could barely stay still long enough to fit the key in the garage door.  Barely made it alive through the jumble and tumble of stuff.  Scrabbled through boxes, rummaged through piles, and tossed aside heavy furniture like a pro caber tosser.  Emerged victorious with my prize.  Discovered it wasn’t quite right, and regretted the fact that we have three pairs of roller-blades that look exactly alike, and are three barely-different sizes.  Returned to the garage, rummaged some more, and ensured that I had a left and a right shoe that were the same size.  I paused, looking around at the Junk-gle in our garage to question whether we would qualify for Hoarders: Buried Alive, decided that was unlikely since it wasn’t also full of cats or guinnea pigs, and once again, emerged victorious from the garage. 

I lassoed my faithful companion, and failed to lasso Tall Sister, who used her Wiley “Doing school work” excuse to dodge the plan.  Strapping on wrist guards like a knight donning his gauntlets, I was ready to go – ready to try rollerblading for the first time since last year, ready to try rollerblading with the dog.  Epic Journey BEGUN!

I wobbled, leash in hand, down the driveway, while Gwynn stared, dumbfounded, at me and my newly acquired skills.  We swooshed out into the road, and he quickly caught on that I was, indeed, fast enough to keep up with his slow-trot pace.  We were doing pretty well, with him mostly trotting down the grassy verge, and me carefully skating down the road.  He tried to run out in front of me a few times, but I stopped that with a tug on the leash and a wobble.  Epic success!  I mentally patted myself on the back for a genius idea!


Then, distraction!  A diabolical plot by Murphy, Happenstance, and “Fancy seeing you here!” – two of my friends walking down the road towards me.  Eye-contact and a brief, rolling conversation were all it took for me to be taken down.  First, Gwynn tried again to dodge in front of me.  While pulling the leash and wobbling, I failed to see the massive pothole fast-approaching on the pavement.  I mastered the art of Gravity as well as the art of Acceleration in one fluid arm-waving and gut-wrenching moment. 

Having not even reached the end of my own street, I was felled!  My pants were shredded, I was regretting not wearing knee pads, and very very thankful that I was wearing wrist-guards.  I got up, shook myself off, ignored the blood dripping down my leg, and tried to continue on my merry way, but the magic was lost.  Gwynn started off hanging back, walking slowly at the end of the leash, then stopped all-together.  His tail was tucked, and he watched me as though I’d grown an extra head with sharp teeth, the ability to breathe fire, and a fondness for eating fuzzy little creatures. 

What I looked like after falling... but with rollerblades on! elfwood.com

He would tentatively walk towards me if I hobbled in the awkward rollerblade-walk on the grass, but as soon as I started rolling, his bum would hit the ground and he’d brace himself against the leash. 

“Nuh-UH!” he said, with sad and alarmed eyes, “I’m not going ANYWHERE with you until you get down off those demon-wheels.  You might secretly be a Dalek with all that whipping about without moving your legs!  Also, you bleeding is freaking me out as well!”

I checked him for injury, tried to lure him with treats, begged and pleaded, offered the skates for him to sniff, and was rejected at all turns.  Not even for beef liver would he consent to movement.

the other version of me... EXTERMINATE!

In defeat, I called Tall Sister on my cell.

“Is Gwynn OK?!  Did you HURT HIM?!  Did you do something stupid?  Are you broken?”

Yup… you can tell where the family loyalty lies.

After some convincing that no, I’m not making this up, he’s not hurt, he just won’t move, she walked out to meet me.  Of course, as soon as he sees her, he’s off and walking, trotting back towards our house.  He wouldn’t come near me until I got the blades off, staying on Tall Sister’s other side the entire time we walked home, despite still being held on leash by me.  Every once in a while, he’d peek around her to give me a suspicious glare.  It was like he was saying, “Look, see what she’s doing?  THIS is how you are supposed to move forward!  Nobody likes Dalek, so retire your toilet-plunger and hover-walking, or I’m calling Dr. Who.”

I plan to try this battle again, but for now, I’ll nurse my pride and my knee.  Maybe I’ll go compare battle-scars with the under-8 crowd – because, let’s be honest, it’s the only age-group where skinned knees are a standard accessory.  I think I still have my old pogs somewhere… are kids still playing with those?



  1. It sounds like Gwynn just needs to ‘get’ what roller-blades are. I see plenty of people running, biking and roller-blading with their dogs. You can too!

    • I hope he’ll recover from this new fear – he was really enjoying it right up until I nose-dived. I figure I’ll spend a bit of time just rollerblading around the driveway with him, give him a chance to see that it doesn’t always lead to scary things 🙂

  2. TheIdiotSpeaketh

     /  May 5, 2011

    Uh-Oh…another Dr. Who geek…… 🙂

    • Who? me?? *shifty eyes* I might have caught an episode or 50 in the distant-ish past… But it definitely wasn’t me at the comecon getting my picture taken with the Dalek costume guy, No Siree! That’s just crazy talk.

  3. That’s SO funny! You freaked the dog out…he was fine until you fell and messed it up with your thump, probably an “ow” was muttered, and blood…

    Well, I hope you are okay. Pretty brave of you to go out on rollerblades for the first time with the dog. I would have gotten my “sea legs” back beforehand…I’m too scared to take my dog for a run while riding my bike. He darts all over the place and stops right in front of you…I’d probably end up running over him!


    • brave, or not very bright… depending on your perspective 🙂 Brave sounds much nicer!
      hopefully he recovers from it, and we can go rollerblading (with more safety equipment) again soon.

  4. I hope your knee is okay, if your older than 8 those scrapes really hurt! I have full confidence that you’ll have better luck next time! And don’t worry, Gwynn will come around, he just didn’t want you to get hurt again 🙂

    • thanks! I was zombie-shuffling for a few days, but am almost back to normal now. Which is good, because my creepingly slow walk was not suited to walking the dog.

  5. You are braver than me. I bought a pair of fancy roller blades in 1992 and have only used them about 3 times. I never figured out how to stop…which can be a problem. Trying to do it with the dogs would be certain carnage.

    • My stopping requires a fair bit of flat straightaway for me to slow down, but I figured I could monitor how tired/hot gwynn was a bit better than with a bike. He needs and enjoys running, but I can’t always have him off-leash (and fetch is a work-in-progress… maybe if he brought it back more often, i’d throw it more often, lol). And, of course, I’m not at all interested in taking up Jogging. Luckily, it’s warm out now, and I found some dog groups on that meetup site you mentioned on your blog (I think it was from you that I heard about that… metup.com…), so hiking will happen soon.

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