James was finished with the tires by the time I had all four in harnesses, and I dragged out the gangline, shock absorbers and rope connector to the cart.
First out was Samantha, and as I grabbed her collar and attempted to get her solo through the gate, she slipped out of it, and took off running. Fortunately Samantha is a very smart and very good obedient dog. She quickly realized she wasn't being followed and no other dogs were forthcoming, and came right back and let us hook her up. What a great dog!
Next was Yukon, and I managed to get him hooked up without an incident. Demon was next as Freya was playing hard to get and not coming to the gate. She went in to mega-play mode and thought it was some great game to avoid me even though she whined and yowled at the gate to get out. When I came near her, she ran off in to the back yard. Tired of chasing her around, I left her inside the fence while I started down the road with the three dogs. Samantha was eagerly whining to get going, and they all seemed pumped and excited. Unfortunately their excitement caused them to tangle. So, I ended up stopping once before the bridge and once after the bridge to untangle them. By the time I finished untangling them the second time, James caught up with Freya in tow.
So I took a few moments to re-attach the tug line for Freya, but James had forgotten to grab the neckline. Since we were already over a quarter mile from the house, I decided to run without it, and hooked in Freya. As soon as I hooked her in and before I managed to sit in the cart, Freya took off like a shot and without my weight, the breaks on the cart were woefully inadequate. The other three were hot on her heels, though Yukon looked as if he was trying to stop, as he knew I was not in the cart yet. I grabbed for the cart and managed to my woe to catch the steering wheel. This was a complete miscalculation on my part. 4 dogs > me
Shouts of Whoa fell on deaf puppy ears, so eager was Freya to run! I was never a very fast runner, even though I could run quite a distance, my speed was never the greatest. Needless to say, the dogs were much faster even with the brakes on the cart. My feet could not keep up, and I was pulled off them, and sent rolling in to the ditch after a close and intimate introduction to a few misplaced rocks. Good thing I had thought to put on my helmet and gloves!
About fifty yards up the road was a curve and the cart flipped without anyone to guide the steering, and the brakes still leaving rubber skid marks down the road. Somewhere around 300 more yards and the dogs finally grew tired of pulling the upsidedown cart and stopped. Limping, I managed to retrieve the seat that had come out of its mooring, and catch up to the dogs. Fortunately, there were no injuries to the dogs, just a very bruised and scraped me.
Putting the seat back on the cart, turning it and the dogs around for home, they pulled me back to the house without further incident. I managed to un-harness them, check their paws and give them a rub-down checkup before my knee finally gave out on me. It swelled up to about the size of a softball, and had really ugly purple marks from the top of my kneecap to the top of my shin, with about a quarter sized area where the skin had come off. Hop-limping to the couch, I asked my son to bring me the first aid kit and some warm soapy water with a cloth. Cleaning the scrapes was painful but necessary. A bit of bactine, neosporin, and some bandages covered the scrapes, and a re-useable icepack got the swelling under control.
Needless to say, I'm very sore today, limping around, and have both my knees bandaged up. Try explaining that to the boss!