Location: Cornwall, United Kingdom

Wednesday, November 30, 2005


It's the last day of the month, and S is happy because he's been paid, so his overdraft is temporarily removed. Reminds me of the state of my food bin: it's been nearly empty for some time, but does anyone think to order more Arden Grange Adult food for me? Oh, no. Let the dog starve. No-one thinks of the dog.

Last Friday's snow didn't last long. I can remember the last time I really saw snow in Cornwall - it doesn't happen often - in St Stephen, and the college was closed as the students' coaches couldn't get through the moors and hills. S went to the pub at lunchtime with his snowed-in neighbours; his excuse was he needed to post some OU essays he'd marked. Several hours later they all came back much the worse for wear. Some quite important professional people were hors de combat for some time. G came home to find me hungry and distressed, all the doors open, and S snoring in bed; he hadn't fed me, walked me or anything . I felt like a chav dog. Though that word hadn't been invented then.

So after the snow started thawing on Saturday we weren't able to go anywhere, and had the most boring walks. At least G has been home this week, though she spends all her time in her office, staring at her electronic toys, and despite my best efforts to distract her she pays little attention to me.

S came home early today: one of his staff was leaving, so they brought her over to a posh restaurant in Truro for lunch. She's into food and menus, and it seemed, so S said, appropriate. Me, I'd have preferred a run on the beach. Well, maybe not a run these days, but a brisk stroll. I'm not allowed in restaurants for some reason.

Then he came home and went to sleep. Said he's not used to eating so much at lunchtime. I don't get ANYTHING to eat at lunchtime. Did find the crust of a pasty when we went for our evening walk this evening, but it's hardly the same as a Stingi Lulu box. Whatever that is.

G wanted to watch Trinni and Susanna tonight, so S retired up here to look at British Library archives on the net, and other fascinating things of the sort, so I persuaded him to update my blog. I know it's not one of my best, but then my life is pretty dull, punctuated by moments of mediocrity. Don't feel it isn't worth knowing about. S says Nietzsche said that the dullest life is redolent of mystery and power. I think he just made it up. Who the hell is Nietzsche when he's at home, anyway? Mad Max the border collie down the road thinks he used to play for Bayern Munich in the seventies, but as Max is only two years old, how would he know?

Off to Weston on Saturday to see the sprout in Nikki. It's the snow-postponed visit. Apparently it's a very precocious baby: seems to be engaged already. Some sort of arranged thing, no doubt. We're supposed to be going for lunch in a dog-friendly pub somewhere; I don't understand why restaurants ban dogs. They let children in...

Anyway, S wants to go and watch Lost now, for some reason. I quite like it: there's this really hot labrador retriever in it; bit of a Californian airhead, but great bod.

I'm not shallow, I'd have you know. I've watched S read War and Peace, and modern stuff like Paul Auster, who has an excellent novel about a dog called Timbuktoo. Implausible, cos he talks American, but apart from that, quite compelling.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Snow in Cornwall

Arctic weather blew down over Cornwall yesterday. S went to work, annoyed that snow hadn't fallen overnight as forecast; he's worse than the teenagers he teaches. He shows all the responsibility of a weasel on uppers. The snowstorm started mid-morning, and everyone was sent home from his college at lunchtime. By mid-afternoon several centimetres of snow had fallen, with big, thick flakes falling slowly out of a stunned, gunmetal sky. My G was home all day, after being away all week, so I wasn't dog alone for once. She couldn't believe it when S rang to say he was getting the 13.35 train: there was no snow in Truro at that point. She stayed bravely at her laptop in her office while I guarded the front door faithfully.

I went out in it into the garden a few times to check out the birdfeeders; sometimes the birdfood falls to the ground, so anyone can have it. S got cross, as he was sitting by the fire trying to read his depressing Sebastian Barry novel about Irish soldiers in WWI, and I kept barking to be let out every ten minutes. After five minutes outside I'd bark to come back in. Seems perfectly reasonable to me; can't open the door myself, can I?

We all had to walk up to Sainsbury's at 5; it was like a scene from a bad sci-fi movie - all the traffic was gridlocked, and pavements were thronged with people walking like zombies on the treacherously icy ground. Cars were abandoned by the roadsides, and there were throngs of people on the station platforms, obviously having left their cars in the city, unable to get out. There were hardly any cars in the supermarket carpark, and people were having to carry bags of shopping home through the ice and snow. Because of the slippery surfaces they carried them like they were full of precious liquid.

I met a chocolate lab, tethered just inside the automatic doors; I'd been attached to the post outside. He kept sniffing my nose, and looking nervous. I looked haughty, and pretended not to see him. Then when S didn't come back soon enough after choosing some wine, I started barking, with that shrill edge I can get when I'm anxious. I was supposed to go to the groomer's yesterday, but G postponed it because of the imminent blizzard. This morning I was supposed to be going into kennels while G and S drove up to Weston for the weekend to see Nx and Gaz and the burgeoning sprout, but the A30 had been closed overnight, and was still too dangerous. They did think of going tomorrow morning, with me in the car, but the evening news suggested it was not a good idea, so maybe we will go somewhere good, like Idless woods, where the squirrels may not be expecting me.

I enjoyed my walk in the snow this morning, and did my Finnish post-sauna wriggle right down into the deepest bit, upside down and squirming my muzzle deep into the soft. I love the sensation; reminds me of that Christmas in the Dales with S's brother and wife, when we walked to Malham Tarn and got frozen, and had a pint of Old Peculier in the pub at Malham to thaw out. Didn't even like the tarn, which looked more like a lake to me. I liked the dales, which are hills really.

G made S go Christmas shopping in Truro today, which made him even grumpier than he already was. This was to punish G for being away all week again. His tactics strike me as rather aberrant. Now he's going to urge her to cook his tea, as he's hungry, and doesn't want to type this for me any longer; selfish as ever. He says they're having duck, but I don't suppose the dog will get any. My food bin is getting worryingly low, too; they're too badly organised to stock up in time.