When we moved from California to New York in 2005, I was worried that leaving the suburbs for the city would mean that our dogs' quality of life would plummet. Gone were California's shirt-sleeve winters, here were New York's ice & snow, congestion & concrete.
How wrong I was to worry about Maggie and Molly! Their quality of life has never been better than those days in New York, and we have two people to thank above all for their joy: Marco & Marlon Araujo. These Brazilian brothers and their cousins were M&M's dogwalkers during our three years in the Big Apple, and their care meant that Maggie and Molly lived the good life.
5 days a week, Maggie and Molly spent 2 hours at the local dog run in Morningside Park with Marco and/or Marlon, with Maggie repetitively chasing tennis balls like an OCDog and Molly trying and failing through her incessant barking to maintain order amongst the assembled mutts.
Now that we've returned to California and a stand-alone home, the girls have a yard and the ability to show themselves out through their own dog door. Though they can venture out into the gentle California weather whenever they like (no more brushing snow from their paws), I'm too lazy/buzy/occupied to walk them
at all in the same manner that they were walked in New York. They don't have Marco & Marlon out here, and I like to think that somewhere in their doggie minds they miss the smelly streets of New York and straining with a brace of other hounds as they pulled their way to their daily dog run.
Update: As I look back on some short videos I took of the dogs during the snowiest single day in New York City history, I'm reminded that beagles like wintry weather just fine:
What's this? After living in New York City for three years, I'm returning to California. These are the parts of my New York experience that I'll miss the most.