Medfield-Hampden, June 25

When choosing a day on which to wander, I tend to prefer Sunday over Saturday. The former is hectic, full of young folks fighting to make the most they can out of the too-brief weekend, and by nightfall 36th Street is all but thronged; the latter, by contrast, nursing a metaphorical hangover, I find much better suits a more relaxed sort of peregrination.

I hadn’t quite expected to find myself in Wyman Park, but having once done so, sought to make the most of it. I did rather feel sorry for the folks who’d come out to walk the trails, so many of whom were plainly struggling under the hot and merciless sun; stray but a few yards off the so carefully demarcated paths, and one may find the cool gentle solace of forest shade.

That said – when in Wyman Park, please keep your dog on a leash, or at least out of the woods unsupervised. While there’s nothing in those woods which will do a dog harm, there is plenty of harm for a dog to do there – as for example to the rather freshly dead vixen I tripped over, very nearly in the literal sense – throat torn out, but otherwise unworried. A coyote wouldn’t do that – kill a fox, certainly, but not leave the body otherwise untouched. A dog would, though. And while we’re hardly short of foxes in these parts, I can’t imagine it’s much more pleasant for you to have your dog come out of the woods streaked in gore, than for me to stumble across the pointless murder that same dog left behind. So, please, look after your pet responsibly. I think we’ll both be happier for it.

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