Wherever we go – on foot or bike at least – we’re followed by the sound of barking dogs. Every house and farm has at least one, although a small pack of them is more usual, generally yelling blue murder at us from behind the safety of the gate. I’m not sure if they bark at us because pedestrians are unusual, or because they bark at everything: passing cars, pheasants, clouds, the rain, air. But bark they do, bravely seeing off the desperate brigands threatening their hearth and home.
Then yesterday, one of the mini wolfpack that lives on the corner of the turn to the ford* managed to get out by leaping the wall as we went past. Within the gate, its less agile companions were still baying for our blood. Six inches away, on the other side of the gate, this ferocious vanguard of the pack was … rolling over to have its tummy scratched. Ah. It did have the grace to look embarrassed about it, but a tummy scratch is a tummy scratch after all, and I give particularly good ones.
Perhaps, if the writing lark doesn’t work out, I will have to take up burlglary. A few handfuls of dog biscuits and a willingness to be licked may well be all the equipment I need. And for a guard dog of my own? I think I’ll be getting some geese…
*Dry at the moment, but thanks for asking