Dad signed up for the Barktoberfest Rover Romp in Auburn. The day started auspiciously, when he and Mongo got to park in the close parking lot, even though the attendant told them there were no spots left! It was warm when they debarked form Kimi’s jeep. First they went trick or treating at all the dog food vendors’ tables. Then the time of the race drew near. Just then the sun went behind the clouds and the cold front rolled over the racers. It started to get chilly as the participants milled around the start line. Dad started praying that his legs would not get chilled before he started the race. Mongo didn’t care about the weather.
Finally, the mayor blew the air horn that started the race. Dad and Mr. M started behind all the competitors who were unlucky enough to not have a dog with them. Within the first half a mile, Mr. M had dragged Dad to the front of the pack, when Mr. M abruptly pulled over to the side for a poop break. Dad quickly bagged it and then they rejoined the race. Within the next half mile, they were again at the front of the pack.
“Careful Buddy!”, Dad cautioned Mongo. “If you go too much faster Dad’s poor old knees will fly apart!” But Mongo pulled harder, and Dad hauled back on the leash, until Mongo veered off the course again for a pee break. Dad waited with an aire of patience that he really didn’t possess.
Mongo was racing again as soon as his leg came away from the tree. He and Dad soon were leading again as they neared the turn. Then Mongo saw the kiddie pool. There was a loud splash, and then Mr. M was laying in the pool enjoying a cool drink. Dad took a drink from the race attendants also, as it appeared they were not going anywhere soon.
As soon as Dad finished his drink, Mongo sprung from the pool and shook. Within moments, they were back on the course in second place. Ahead of them now were a couple with their schnauzer, but Mongo and Dad had spent too much energy on the out leg pulling at opposite ends of the leash.
All they could do was keep pace with the schnauzer family until the end of the race. Still Dad and Mongo finished 2nd, and their pace for the 5Km was 24:02, which meant they made Dad’s goal of running in under 8 minute miles. Mongo however, would have to wait till next week’s race to see if he could win a 5k outright.