Posting day: Sunday, and, sometimes, maybe, extra bits in between.
Sunday January 17th 2021
Well, last week’s snowfall was definitely worth waiting for: someone is absolutely thrilled.
I think she just can’t quite believe that anything so wonderful is really happening.
For well over two hours, she skips and skitters merrily this way and that. Today, she’s not interested in checking over the rest of the park. She wants to run around in her favourite space.
She doesn’t even mind when the snow stops falling because by then she has realised that she can make the hedges and brambles snow.
She tugs vigorously at the brambles. They are loaded with snow, and each tug dispenses slices of the delicious stuff over her muzzle, ears and neck.
When she leaps up and down under the lowest branches of the young beeches, nose-nudging their snowy dead leaves, she’s rewarded by random spluts on her back and her feet.
And, best of all, when she launches herself at the springy hawthorn bushes she creates a nose to tail shower.
Words can’t adequately convey her pleasure. I watch, enchanted for two and a half hours.
By which time she’s ready to go home?
No way. Not on your Nelly, as my grandmother would have said. By which time she is not ready to go anywhere, and my toes and fingers are painfully cold.
But, to be fair to her, she is a good natured little dog and she doesn’t resist when I thread her into her harness and lead her to the car.
After her tea, she sleeps like a hairy log. She doesn’t even wake up for her usual evening play with her toys.
The next day she trots onto the snow, full, I imagine, of anticipation. Great. She can feel the wonderful stuff under her paws.
She rushes to the spot where she had so much fun yesterday. She stands stock still, lifts her little spotty nose skywards and opens her very pink mouth in anticipation.
And she waits.
But nothing happens.
Her disappointment is palpable. I feel so sorry for her. “Sweetheart, it’s not falling today,” I tell her sadly.
Then comes a gentle breeze. It puffs a few facefuls of snow into the air.
Isis is ecstatic. She leaps up and down and waits for more, but the breeze dies down again.
Come on, dimwitted Human, use your imagination. Ah, yes! Look for a twig. Search for a nice twangy one with a bushy end.
Yes! Here’s the perfect snowstick!
Zingy, springy, slim and whippy, it’s very similar to the one she played with a few weeks ago.
“A snowstick, Isy”, I tell her. I take a wide swipe at the closest clump of snow, lifting it up from the ground and over her head.
A happy dog again, she dashes off, leaping and bounding, while I race over the snow behind her, swooshing the lovely white stuff up and over her with my snowstick.
This is somewhat tiring, but just as I’m wondering how long I can keep running, the breeze picks up and blows clouds of snow at her.
The bursts of breeze are frequent now. They scatter left over snowflakes from the tops of the tall shrubs and the trees.
And Isis remembers that if she roots in the snow, she can gather a wedge of it on her nose and toss it up in the air herself.
So, all in all, today is as good as yesterday.
*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 email@example.com or www.dogwatchuk.co.uk