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Location: Cornwall, United Kingdom

Saturday, December 31, 2005

New Year's greetings

It’s New Year’s Eve 2005. All the papers and other media are full of reviews of the year – mostly disasters. My year was not so bad; did spend Christmas in kennels while S and G went up to enjoy themselves in Weston. Got my own back, though: they got a call as they drove home from the warder, saying she’d had to call out the vet to look at me. I seemed to have a recurrence of my bladder infection, and was prescribed antibiotics. This really worried them, as it should, and serve them right for banging me up for four days while they had a good time.

There was a rather cute spinone in there, but he was in a cell at the opposite end to mine, so I wasn’t able to establish any rapport. My neighbour was a ratty old retriever, who kept bragging about how big his owners’ house was, and what a great garden he had to dig in. Stupid dog.

S has been increasing his bird feeders; got really excited the other day when seven long-tailed tits arrived on the peanuts. Can’t see the appeal myself, though I suppose they’d make for tasty canapés.

Two squirrels keep eating all the food on the birdtable. S gets cross and rushes out to chase them off. I nearly caught one up by the woods this morning. Fortunately I was off the lead, and he took off just ahead of me. When I was younger I’d have had him; as it was he escaped, but it was a close thing.

Yesterday in the woods we saw a girl holding a puppy. S thought it was a weimeraner, but she said it was a great dane. He was lovely: sort of blue, with big feet and sad eyes, also blue. I tried to sniff him, but the girl wouldn’t let me. He could grow up seriously messed up in the head if she carries on like that. Hasn’t she heard of socialisation?

G has gone into town, leaving S to watch Football Focus and read his Christmas books. All about birds and dictionaries. Fascinating.

I began by reviewing the year, then digressed. What happened? I was ill a couple of times, went into kennels twice, nearly caught squirrels several times, and next door’s cat; I have slowed down a lot, and can’t say I really care for getting old. Being deaf is ok, as I can now ignore people when they call me to stop me from doing disgusting things, or rolling in them. Come to think of it, I used to ignore them anyway; it’s just that now I have an excuse.

They’re going out for a meal tonight with friends, so it’ll be dog alone as usual. Will watch the fireworks from the kitchen window, like last year. They never used to frighten me when I could hear; now that I can’t, they do. Weird.

Happy new year to all my chums and extended family who might read this, and anyone else who gets this far. L has gone all Buddhist, so I’ll finish with a koan. The master asked his dog what is the Way? The dog replied, how should I know, I’m only a dog. The master asked his cat the same question. The cat bit him. He felt this was a profound and enlightening response.

May the way be found for us all…and no more masters.