Imagine having a word that you can't mention. Like Voldemort, say, in Harry Potter land. Or fart when in the company of a great aunt. Or ice-cream if surrounded by toddlers. A bad idea, in the wrong situation, to utter any of those out loud. So it is with the W word in our house. If we say it and don't act upon it, it becomes a form of torture and a source of great, moaning-laden frustration. Utter it and the excitement created could be bottled. If you are in possession of a canine companion ... that looks wrong; arguably, it is the canine companion who possesses you ... you will be aware of the strike-a-match potential of the W word. And the need to find alternatives - shall we go for a perambulation in half an hour? Or is it time for a stroll? Or what about a wander across the fields? Or anyone fancy placing one foot in front of the other for an hour or so? Speak the W word itself and observe the transformation, from this
actually it is surprisingly difficult to catch them on camera in an excited state. This is how they look a few minutes after the tail-wagging, hip-swinging, vertically-bouncing, whinnying state that the W word triggers. At the gate, ready to go -
Ready in the sun that didn't last long ...
I don't normally complain but I worked on Monday and Tuesday and Four-legged-friend and Bertie Baggins haven't learnt how to take themselves for walks yet - although Bertie Baggins has tried - so the boys were delighted to discover that I wasn't abandoning them yesterday morning. But much less delighted to find that I had running up and down the stairs and baking and carrying baskets of clothes and vacuuming and doing stuff with water and bubbles and cleaning muddy paw prints off the floor and sitting and talking to do. But so far, Doris, none of that was your problem or your fault. What I wish to complain about is your timing. Why did you wait for me to go out on a Walk before doing this? My daughter, who sensibly stayed at home, captioned this - "five minutes after they went out for a walk ..."
I had to shelter in the lea of a tree
and reflect on how much better this would be in summer ... with leaves
Bertie Baggins took on that cliched 'hang-dog' expression - 'I'm not at all happy to be out here / it's warmer at home / why are you standing in a ditch cuddling up to a tree? / the sooner we hurry up this path the sooner we get home / my coat is soggy, my feet are muddy, your bread is wet, so no, I have nothing to be happy about / and yes I am ignoring you because you brought me out in this and I blame you for that and for the fact that you will need to take the towel to me when we get home which I hate and which you know I hate'
Four-legged-friend protested by plodding
They had a point
So Doris, yesterday, you could have waited. Allowed us to get home; dry.
Today, however, my dear, you were spectacular.
(Plus ... I looked at the forecast)
This is the tree we sheltered under yesterday
Bertie Baggins was a little too adventurous in the unexpected sun and swollen stream and a little too not strong enough to scramble up the bank
but - revealing that he isn't as thick (not my word for him!) as he sometimes looks (to others!) - he waded downstream and found a spot where it was much easier. Bread helped.
It took Doris about five minutes to fill the sky with clouds
and the air with ear-flapping wind
and this-is-too-much-I-want-to-go-home gusts
and dramatic stormy skies
Doris, you soaked me yesterday, blew me away this morning and deprived me of internet and electricity for several hours this afternoon. I wonder what you have left over for tomorrow.
Lastly, having promised myself that I wouldn't get political or mention the T word in this post, here's a little escapism, which we all need, especially after a week forever scarred by the infamous (as in not famous) and terrible (as in really ... ?) Sweden incident: searching for fairytales and superheroes - even if a little beige, a little same-y, a little repetitive - is a much better way to start and end a Thursday. It's Coldplay after all ... youtubefeature