Sniffing, snuffling and adventuring

Almost a week ago I was sitting here pondering on what to write. My writing room is very small, barely wider than the width of the double window. When we bought the house – as I described yesterday, this was the fourth bedroom, but there was only room for a single bed and a very small unit for clothes. It has become my writing room. My desk sits adjacent to the window so I can look out across the back garden to the west end of Westfield Close. The end house in Westfield is sideways on to us and is the home of a very nice family, and we have seen the sons grow up, two of them marry, and now there are two small grandchildren. There are a further few houses on that side of the Close, and opposite is the village hall where I can see people arriving and departing after classes and clubs, village market, jumble says, fetes and fairs. Old Church Road runs across the bottom, and opposite this part of Westfield Close, is the eastern end. I can see roof tops of the village, and the far end of Uphill hill, covered in trees.

On the other side of my writing desk is a bookshelf, but I have to get on my hands and knees and crawl under the desk to access it. It runs the length of the room, and there is another adjacent to it. The door to my room is never closed so I can see the family passing by. I don’t get a lot of traffic, as upstairs here are only the bedrooms and bathroom. However, the other day, my pondering day when I couldn’t decide what to write and felt somewhat empty-headish, my daughter passed by and gave me the suggestions, the first two of which I have completed.

  • write about the first house/flat I ever bought. What were my first impressions when I looked round, what was the first thing I did when I moved in?
  • write about other places I have lived (my own places as opposed to rented)
  • write about taking the dog for a walk, a day in the life of the dog, the dog’s thoughts on a day in his life – he has written several blogs before, but none recently, maybe because like with us, his life has been somewhat dull
  • write about a return to the pub, albeit sitting outside – yes, I intend to do that!
  • write about five things in my room – gosh my room is full of stuff so the hard thing will be too decide which!
  • write about my goldfish, Prospero and Graham

So, suggestion number three, all about taking the dog for a walk. As I mentioned when I wrote about her ideas more fully, our dog, though a charming character and full of life, has an anxious side to him. He was a street dog and we have no idea of his previous life except he was found with  his mum and sisters and rescued. For a while we were in touch with the person who adopted one of his sisters, and they actually were able to meet. We were surprised, but maybe we shouldn’t have been, that they recognised each other! My daughter adopted him when he was about four months old, and although he has settled in well, and is happy here with us and very amiable and loving, he is very nervous when out and about – although as h gets older he is getting more confident.

We took him to puppy classes, of course, but I’m not sure they were the right ones for him as most of the others were much younger, and the things he was being taught, sit, wait, walk beside us, get over, under and between things, he could already do. It was nice to meet other owners and compare notes though. Then we had a trainer come to our house, who gave us lots of tips and ideas, and reassured us about how he was doing for a dog of his age. Now we have bought an on-line programme which is really good and has made a difference – to us and to him. I think our major problem wasn’t the dog but us; neither my husband nor I had had dogs in our families, and knew nothing really about them.  We had no experience of dogs, and you can read up as much as you like, and watch videos, and although they are helpful, it’s only when the dog is here in the family that you really know what’s what!

I’ve always taken him out for lots of walks, but due to the present situation, and due to our village being a very popular place for visitors, it has become quite stressful for him to take him out. Luckily we have a big garden and he’s very fond of being outside, and when it gets quiet in the evenings, then we go walkies, which suits him and us. Now it’s becoming possible to travel outside our area we will begin to go further afield and he’ll have great fun exploring off lead, sniffing, snuffling and adventuring.

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