This past weekend I spent down in the Carolina’s, both North and South. I graduated with my doctorate from a school that is in Spartanburg (aka. Sparkle City), SC and decided to go back and meet some friends for a seminar. While I was there, a few friends and I decided we would take a hike. The North Carolina border is just 45 minutes from the school and we spent last Friday afternoon in the woods of Soluda, NC on a beautiful trek to a waterfall…and Choco was with me. During that hike, there is an overlook to the waterfall that is a 300 foot cliff, and when I say cliff, I mean straight down. Being a good mom, I decided to tie Choco up the path a little ways just so that he didn’t make an off-step and get into trouble, which actually worked perfectly. While we were enjoying the views he was tied up, watching and waiting for us. So one of my friends that is with us, has a chihuahua at home and doesn’t really understand the retriever instincts of my big chocolate lab. As we go to untie the dog, my friend decides this is the perfect time to throw a rock (the size of a tennis ball) back down to the edge of the cliff. Guess what Choco does? Yup, he chases that thing full blast, which in turn makes me lose hold of the leash, right up to the edge of the cliff and…then the rock stops…thank you, thank you Choco’s Guardian Angels… Many of you have met Choco… and if it was inside, you realize that he is pretty mellow. However if you met him and it was outside and he had a ball in or around his vicinity, you realize he is a nut-case. So the next day we were throwing the ball for him over yet another rock ledge, this one only 4 feet high or so. Without testing or looking over the edge, he runs and chases the ball no matter what and basically has the attitude of “I trust where my mom is throwing this ball is going to be fine for me to go to”. Basically he runs his life on blind trust and to watch how his mind works fascinates me and scares the b’geezers out of me!!! I know at my core that if that rock that was thrown was a ball and made it off the cliff, my dog would have gone with it and lost his life. In fact, after seeing that action the very next day off a 4 foot rock, I have not gone to sleep one night without the thought of it. It is really frightening. There is a lot of blind trust and faith happening in the world today and many are reaping the consequences of it and some are even losing their lives. Check in with yourself…is there anything that you have blindly trusted? Is there something that maybe you should look over the edge at before chasing that ball? I am a very proud dog owner, I love my dog and now realize I need to look after him and think ahead a little bit more than I do already. Look ahead, what’s in front of you? Ya know, we only get one chance in this life…
(the top picture is a picture from the cliff, the second is at the beautiful waterfall destination we were after)

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