Auntie Cath Morgan suggested to Daff
that we should have some herbs to sell at our Open Weekend. Daff must
have had a brainstorm cos she ordered 720 assorted plug plants. I said
to Mr Paddidog, “Does she really think we’re going to sell all those?”
but he just sighed and went back to sleep.
Anyway, these herbs duly arrived, and
then sat in the greenhouse at The Patch for a couple of weeks. I think
Daff must have lost the will to live, so I said to her, “Don’t you think
it’s time you got those bits of weed into pots?” and she went out and
bought 800 new pots because she couldn’t be bothered washing the old
ones she’d saved for occasions like this which were stuffed under the
bench in the greenhouse amongst all the cobwebs.
Well, Auntie Cath and Uncle Darren had
previously promised to help, so they were duly called to duty last
Sunday. They arrived, bearing jam doughnuts and custard tarts and also
a big chocolate cake for John, whose birthday was last Thursday. All
these goodies reminded Daff that she had forgotten to bring the gravy
bones for us dogs; she looked in the dog biscuit jar in the kitchen down
there but all there was were a few doggy choc drops that had turned
white, so I knew we were in for a lean day.
Then Fleck, Vic and Flo all poured out
of their car and – laugh! I could have cried. We nearly split our
collars, cos they were wearing their coats! And, not only that,
these coats had the logo of another greyhound rescue charity!
“What a bunch of second hand wusses,” I said to Bluebell, and she
agreed, cos we never wear our coats at The Patch, we just keep
running all the time and even when it’s really cold, we always end up
far too hot.
Sally and Bluebell told the visitors
that there was a very dead cat- well it looked a bit like a cat, but it
was hard to tell - at the bottom of the field (no, it was absolutely
nothing to do with us, because it had been dead for weeks and during the
bad weather before and after Christmas we didn’t go down The Patch), so
we all rushed down the ride at the side of the new wood to inspect it.
Sally told Flo she’d eaten a leg bone the day before and very good it
was too - very different from anything she’d sampled before. Bluebell
said there was a lot more where that came from, only every time she went
near, she’d been shouted at and eventually had been put back in the car
so she couldn’t get at it. Vic asked if it was good for rolling in,
and I assured him it was, but when we got to the spot, there was nothing
there, not even a bit of fur, only a slight hollow where it had been.
I don’t think the visitors believed me – I didn’t find out till
afterwards that John had picked it up (it rolled up just like a carpet,
he said) and put it in the landfill bag. We were all really annoyed
about that, cos we didn’t half lose face.
Anyway, we did a couple of circuits of
the field, and then went back to see what was happening with the potting
up. Fleck, Vic and Flo were boiling by this time, so Auntie Cath and
Uncle Daz undressed them. Fleck immediately shot off into the shelter
belt and started screaming – I think he must have trodden on a bramble,
and my word, what a fuss! Limping and languishing about all over the
place, currying sympathy, until something trivial took his mind off it
and it was all forgotten. How does he think I manage with my SEVERELY
DEFORMED foot, and yet you never, ever hear me complain, in fact,
I hardly mention it at all?
Once Flo was disrobed, she disappeared
into Mr Paddy’s special triangle by the gate with him for a rest (well,
it’ll make him happy for the rest of the week), and Vic, Sally, Discit,
Bluebell and I went for another race. As I was, as usual, the winner
by miles, and was back with the grown (or should it be groan) ups, I
didn’t see what happened, but all of a sudden Bluebell started screaming
and howling and crying and snivelling, all at the same time. Daff
thought she’d trodden in the bonfire of the previous day, which was
still a bit warm, and she told her not to be so soft, because she could
easily put her hand into the ash without getting burnt.
Well, by now the day’s novelty was
beginning to wear off as far as we hounds were concerned. The
grown-ups were busy ignoring us, filling pots and stuffing little plants
into them, in between drinking tea and eating cakes every five minutes,
and we dogs were quite tired. I got into the back of our car for a
nap, but Flo kept trying to get in with me, so I told her in no
uncertain terms to clear off, and got shouted at for it. Daff put some
duvets and other beds that she keeps down there for occasions like these
out in the sun, but as they are all so much nicer than the ones at home,
I couldn’t decide which one to lie on and thought the best solution was
to keep the other dogs off them all with some of my well-chosen phrases
and expressions I use on occasions like these, keep them all to myself,
and lie on each one in turn.
That seemed to work, cos eventually Mr P
wandered off with young Rheanna, Fleck and Vic disappeared in search of
something to roll in, Flo took over Mr Paddy’s triangle, and the girls
lay on the concrete by the shed wall, which was warm. It was at this
point that Daff and Auntie Cath discovered the real reason for
While she was charging round the field,
she must have barged into a tree. You could tell that cos her side was
all green. Among the green was a long, red graze surrounded by a big,
purple bruise – quite an interesting colour scheme, really.
Immediately, she drew maximum sympathy from everyone, the potting up was
finished at top speed and we were all taken home so she could
I have to admit, it looked quite nasty,
and I was glad it had happened to her and not me. If it had happened to
our car, it would have cost £800 to put right. To show how sorry I
was, I let her have my place on the settee that evening for a whole
quarter of an hour. But she’s been going on about her poorly side all
week and it gets a bit tedious after a while. No-one seems to have
noticed that I’ve got a scratch under my eye – if it had been an inch
above, I’d probably be blind now.
Now Bluebell’s bruise has almost
disappeared and John and Daff are fighting over who picks her scabs when
they’re ready. Since Bluebell arrived, she’s caused nothing but
trouble, but what can you expect with a girl? Anyone can have
my new scab any time.
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