My new friend Barry Erdman and I hiked Shanahan Trail up to the Mesa Trail this morning — twice.
While Barry and I had talked on the phone several times before today, this was the first time that we had met in person. Diabetes was what brought us together. He was diagnosed around Thanksgiving and immediately took charge of controlling it (most people go into denial at first).
Barry is a licensed clinical social worker with a psychotherapy practice for adults, couples, and families here in Boulder. We have a lot in common besides diabetes and our love of hiking. We even know many of the same people, including my good friend Norm Lowery, who is also a therapist here.
This was my first hike into the foothills this year. It has been too cold and windy. But this morning was sunny and still, and the weather warmed up to about 35 degrees. Dressed warmly as we were, it was not unpleasant.
Most of the 4 miles that we hiked were icy. I wore my Yaktrax and Barry borrowed my trekking poles. Still, each of us slipped several times on the ice, but neither of us fell even once.
When we reached the high point of the North Fork Shanahan Trail, it intersected with the Mesa Trail. Here are pictures of Barry and of me at the junction.
And it was here that we found a device that looked like a pager but which I immediately recognized as a control device for a dog, because it was what Catherine had used to control Ember. We had paid $500 for this “Dogtra” device, so it was a shame to see it lying there, but we left it on the trail marker and proceeded south down the Mesa Trail to where it intersected with the South Fork Shanahan Trail.
Then, when we had almost returned to my car, we saw a sign that Maggie was looking for her Dogtra. Barry used his cell phone to call the number and Maggie’s “guardian” Diane answered. She had lost the Dogtra yesterday. It was a loaner while hers was being repaired and would have cost her $500. Barry said that we would go back up the trail and retrieve it. So we hiked a second time up to the Mesa Trail, found it where we had left it, hiked back, and took it to Diane and Maggie, who is a small Chesapeake Bay Retriever. Diane holds the Dogtra that we took back to her.
Then, Barry took me to lunch at one of my favorite Indian restaurants. We stopped by an Indian grocery, where I picked up some fresh okra and bitter melon for dinner tonight, before coming back here, where we talked. What a delightful day!