Charlie’s Corner is the domain of Charlie, the furry four-legged lady’s man of the Market Common. Each month, he’ll share information to help all new, visiting, and existing doggie community members get the most out of life alongside their human companions. Here, we’ll feature his reflections on what it’s like to be a dashing downtown doggie, as he reminds all of us how to play well together. This month, Charlie gets some early morning beach time in and connects with his inner artist.
This month, I want to share with you all a new routine I just began. During the summer months, I’m only allowed on the beach before 10am or after 5pm (apparently not everyone likes my fur. I know it came as a shock to me too), so I head to the beach with my loving people in the early morning hours. I also tend to molt less at that time too, so it makes me feel more respectful in general.
Anyhow, watching the sun come up over the ocean became a profound daily experience for me— one that filled me with joy and also stillness, and I decided to take up meditation rather than running unbridled down the beach, because it just seemed like the thing to do at that time.
I found that with repeated practice, it began to quell any doggie anxiety I had from making my column interesting and informative every month— and as a small dog, I do tend to shake more. Lo and behold it helped with that too!
One day, while sitting and staring at the sun, feeling the flow of my breath and getting caught up in the beauty, magic and mystery of it all, I began to feel something else too. A burst of creativity! My meditation practice unleashed in my doggie self a new vein of artistic potential.
I have never given much voice to this latent part of me, and I feel quite excited to have discovered that I possess cleverness beyond my writing abilities and knack of endearing others to me. So now, every day I make shapes in the sand to express my inner artist.
At first I began by digging tunnels and caves, and pretended that I was searching in an underground labyrinth for the Minotaur. Although if I caught him, I’m not sure what I’d do with him. I haven’t unleashed my inner hero yet.
Then I pretended that I was searching for a pirate’s buried treasure, and given the history of this place, that’s not such a far-fetched goal. I’ll bet there is some buried treasure still hiding around here from days of yore. Then I envisioned that I could dig all the way through our round planet to the other side! It was also really fun the time that I imagined I was digging for buried dog bones.
Then I pushed my paws in the sand and formed a dog house of sorts, which kind of collapsed around my ears, but the wet sand kept me cool. My more recent creations have been more delicate, as I’ve draped seaweed and seashells in a slow and deliberate fashion to make abstract patterns. I like to do it near the edge of the water— watching the water wash my creations away, I feel ties in very nicely with my meditation practice and accompanying philosophy of the impermanence of things and importance of letting go of attachments.
Today, I worked on a statue. This is my most compelling and ambitious enterprise to-date. I know what you all are probably thinking— that in addition to it being a masterpiece, that is was probably in my own likeness. But how wrong you are! I have fashioned a statue to represent my ideal doggie partner. Yes, after many years of the single-life, I once more have set a dream and vision for myself, and created it, in sand form. And then the waves came and washed it away.
I may consider a life devoted to meditation and contemplation after all, but I’ll keep you posted how this new-found artistic passion of mine unfolds, and if it yields success with the ladies.