Tracks in the Snow


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Bird tracks in the snow at Summit Lake.

A few weeks ago we received an inch of over-night snow.  It just so happened that on the exact same night someone left the back gate open.  When I let out the dogs in the morning my black Pug, Jack took advantage of the lax security.  By the time I realized the escape, Jack had been lose for several minutes.  I needed to find the run-away but where to start?

Thankfully, the tracks in the snow told the story of his journey and in a matter of time I’d found the escapee.

The prints revealed every one of his moves, where he stopped to sniff and mark, his journeys close to houses, behind shrubs and across streets.  His meanderings were significant and his investigative prowess was unmatched.

But the snow told the story.  The tracks gave him up and the rising sun revealed his hiding place.

And Jack isn’t alone.

Each of us, over the course of our lives, have taken advantage of the open gates from time to time.  We’ve used the cover of dark to wander, meander, snoop and investigate.  Amazingly, we think that we left no tracks.  Shockingly, we think that our journey remains our own dark secret.

But we all leave prints in the snow.  The layer of white reveals our dark directions.  The early morning light illuminates our night-time wanderings.

Jack did no harm.  He simply exercised his curiosity.  We might not be able to claim as much innocence when we are found out.

It is a good reason to take a moment to rethink the open gate when the option next provides itself.