BREAKING: Roo Shatters Personal Record, Smashes Ice Barrier

It is probably safe to say that no person who has ever seen an animal dream hasn't wondered what they were dreaming about. Except me. I don't have to wonder, because I know exactly what Roo dreams about: swimming off the coast of Antarctica. Not on one of the worst days, when it gets to 100 below, but on the kind of day when a blazing sun in a cloudless blue sky toasts it to a nice, balmy 65 below zero. 

The best part of the dream, the part where her paws start to flap and her face twitches, is when she hears the distant voice of her daddy shouting, "Roo? Roo! Do not even think about going in that water!" which sets her off at a hellacious, catch-me-if-you-can zig-zag pace before sailing, paws gracefully outstretched, over the rim of the ice into the sea with a big splash of droplets that freeze in mid-air, polar bears stranded on drifting icebergs looking on admiringly.

Today, Roo's dream came most of the way true. It was 20 degrees. Twenty. Two-Zero. I knew it was still a little on the warm side for Roo, so I kept telling her not to go in the water, repeat, Kahoo, negatory on the aqua. As you can see from the screen cap of the weather at the time, it was 20, but felt like 8 degrees. A real tongue-hanger for the Kahoo.

Here's Roo just after her moment of triumph. Though she didn't completely submerge, she bested her previous record of 24 degrees in a waterfall in Vermont by a full four degrees.

Tonight, when she dreams her Antarctic dream, it's going to be with the extra special warm and fuzzy feeling of the sweet smell success. Not to mention the pleasure of proving the naysayer wrong.

This picture was a few minutes after the swim. The reason she isn't looking especially wet is because the water on her arms instantly froze.

This picture was a few minutes after the swim. The reason she isn't looking especially wet is because the water on her arms instantly froze.

Later, Roo did something, as she often does, that was quite touching. My old piano, the one I grew up learning to play on, an 1895 Steinway, finally got out of hock and was delivered. They don't build tanks like that any more. It is L O U D. Roo went straight into hiding in her old standby behind the toilet, but she came out right away, and then lay directly under the piano, which was where Orville use to go when I played. Sweet little Kahoo. That piano has followed me from New York to Colorado to California and now here to North Carolina. 

And finally, I'd love to send you a postcard of trail blazes. The idea behind this is simply to share something interesting and lovely that we see out on the trail with you.