White Dog said, "Maybe it is the spirit of the Olympic Games filling her heart." She was referring to Nuka, Another White Dog, our often clumsy, mincy tiptoe walking 11-year-old girl who fights the stiffness of old age in her back legs.
Suddenly, AWD is springing up from her nap position and jumping over the other sleeping pups. She propels herself out of the crate in a broad jump that carries her into nearly the middle of the room.
Nuka is bounding to grab her jerky treats over the backs of those in the White Dog Army who are sitting in front of her, and then gracefully twists before landing on anyone to set all four feet gently on the carpet. She then attacks her treat as though her athletics were nothing.
Tonight when Steve came home. Nuka was trapped at the back of the welcoming pack. Instead of moving to the side awaiting a better opportunity, like Puff does, or running ahead to the office where Steve goes to change into home clothes (like White Dog does), Nuka stood on her hind legs and danced between the bodies like a bicyclist in a traffic jam. We all were stunned into smiling silence as Steve reached down to give her a big hug.
The other night on the bedtime walk, AWD was paired up with Oso. She catapulted herself off of the curb when Steve gave the "OK to cross" signal. Because our streets are also designed to carry rain water runoff in a network down to the river, the curbs are rather tall. But she was fine. Not so much her shorter, chunkier brother who tried to copy her technique and ended up falling and cutting his leg in his attempt.
Steve just shakes his head in wonder and says, "I hope I am as spritely when I am 69!"