Alfresco dining’s for the birds

I was awake before the sailors, but still was running behind the joggers early this Mother’s Day.

Navigating through a thick grove of sweet smelling crab apple trees, I happily joined up with an enthusiastic flock of goslings. They were busily paying homage to their own mother by showing off their newly acquired honking skills at a holiday brunch.

They seemed particularly thrilled that there was plenty of lakeside seating as well as a wide selection of green grass and clover for their culinary pleasure.

I’d already celebrated with my own daughter and grandkids at a busy playground picnic yesterday.

The scene today appeared to be a peaceful one, with my 4 legged boy Rex and I soon enjoying a warm ham and gruyere croissant bought from a trendy patisserie nearby.

Rex slowly licked the cheese and grease off my fingers while he lovingly looked up at me. He then gave me one of those ‘sure is better than kibble’ kind of looks.

He is quite a connoisseur after all.

Then suddenly the entertainment began.

Though we didn’t know there was going to be any.

A newly assembled choir of goslings was crying at the top of their beaks and running right towards us.

They’d flatly rejected nature’s finely prepared platter of fresh greens.

It seems this young flock is particularly fond of French pastries, as is their dear mother.

Shouting “ooh la la” to no one in particular Rex and I trotted off after the runners for cover, leaving our own brunch far behind.

Eventually, we did find solace at a McDonald’s up the road.

And my boy Rex was happy once again, as of course we ordered greasy French fries as a substitute.

Ooh la la!

In my quest to learn more about aging with joy, I’ve been known to pick up a book or two.

Though never before from the children’s section.

Yet one morning a photo of a children’s bookshelf appeared in my newsfeed. It was taken at Battenkill Books in Cambridge, NY.

One sweet book cover immediately caught my eye because of the little white dog and older French woman shown running beneath the Eiffel Tower.

I picked up the phone and ordered a copy of the book, “Madame Martine” by Sarah S. Brannen.

With my own little white dog Rex on my lap this chilly morning, we read it cover to cover.

I was hooked as soon as I read the very first words in the jacket, “Sometimes it takes another pair of eyes to help you see things differently…”

“Thank you, Rex,” I whispered as I scratched my newly adopted boy’s hungry belly.

The book tells the tale of how the French woman was stuck into a rigid routine before meeting up with her new pup, Max.

But now with their partnership, “Every Saturday they tried something new.”

I looked down again at Rex. He looked up at me.

“Hey buddy, did you know it’s Saturday?” I asked. “How about a road trip?”

Perceiving a nod, we trotted off to the best French bakery in the city to share a buttery baguette.

I’ve been meaning to stop in the place for years.

“Ooh la la!” I barked as we pushed open the door, and I finally realized all that I ‘d been missing.