Posting days: Sunday and Wednesday and, sometimes, maybe, extra bits in between.
Sunday June 9th 2019
(My apologies for the odd posts which may have arrived this evening. Before I downloaded images from my phone, I forgot to change ‘publish’ to ‘draft’.)
Isis is becoming more and more confident off lead.
This is great. I’m delighted.
But there’s a downside – for me, not her. She knows how to get from where I think we’re going to where she wants to be.
It’s been a very wet week, so Isis has been even more exuberant than usual, running and running, gulping at the air, kicking up patterns of spray from the loaded grass.
When the rain stops for a while, her little legs, slim with wetness, look incongruous beneath her fluffy mass.
She’s so, so happy.
One morning, she has a wonderful time in King’s Heath Park, celebrating the rain on each level, from the old bowling green up. She spends as much time as she wants, running and leaping.
Until we arrive at the Colour Garden
Here, she seems set for a further hour and a half racing around the main flower bed, bowing and dipping under the lovely, dripping shrubs.
I stand beneath the dense foliage of a tall, wide holly. It’s lovely to watch her, and this tree affords very effective shelter. But I’m already soaked, and soon begin to shiver.
I emerge, dripping from my lair, manage to slow down Isis without being cannonballed back into the holly, and tap her beneath her chin. As usual, she follows me out, along the path by the side of the deserted basketball pitch, and up onto the old tennis courts.
What an obedient, well trained dog, her human thinks smugly.
Perhaps her intentions were good when she set off, but the feel of yet another fresh expanse of wet grass beneath her paws, is irresistible. It sends her into another celebratory frenzy. She runs back and fourth as I walk across the three courts to the exit. I wait for her, only to see the little toad making her soggy way back to the Colour Garden.
I’m wet. I’m cold. I’m tired. And and my hot coffee has just faded further into the distance.
Turning back, I squelch after her. There she is. The joyful little creature has resumed her routine.
I give her another, more purposeful, tap under her chin. This time she insists on walking ahead of me, and we reach the car without further escape attempts.
The rain is still pelting down as she settles on the back seat, and I shrink as far into the shelter of the car boot as possible, trying change from walking boots to trainers without putting an unclad foot into a puddle.
Before I get into the car, I remove my saturated coat and toss it into the passenger foot well.
Surely it’s not possible to feel this cold in June. I hope poor Isis won’t get a chill. She is so wet, I could almost wring her out.
I run my clammy blue and purple hands over her body.
She’s as warm as a hairy hot water bottle.
*Isis came from the Aeza cat and dog rescue and adoption centre in Aljezur, Portugal. For information about adopting an animal from the centre, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or www.dogwatchuk.co.uk