Sunday, April 21, 2013

A dog's life

Where shall we begin?

One evening there were two fleas leaving the cinema and the first flea said to the other, “Should we walk home or should we catch a dog?”

The other day I was walking along the waterfront here in this nameless cathedral city (which has a loose-ish connection to Robin Hood in that he apparently wore clothing of a certain green hue, if legend is to be believed - hope I haven't given anything away there), perambulating along in a northerly direction and, just as I passed the Royal William - a hostelry where I have been known to quench my thirst and fortify the inner man with good pub grub - I had cause to walk under the bridge there. Sitting on the ground and surrounded by what I presume were his goods and chattels (including a little dog) sat a fellow who was clearly one of society's forgotten heroes. He was a paraffin - a tramp, homeless. I'm not knocking him - let's face it, I am only one step up from becoming a "Gentleman of the Road" myself.

He was clearly tall, grizzled and probably as old as me, if not older. Skin the colour of a stained teapot with long grey hair and straggly beard, both tied up in a ponytail. It's a bit strange to see a fellow with a beard in a ponytail, but there we have it. Maybe he had found a couple of elastic bands somewhere and felt it would be a shame not to use them, who knows? The point is, he had a beard in a pony tail.

He watched me pass and, as I did so, carrying three chicken slices which I had bought for a quid in the market, I dropped them into his lap but said nothing. Neither did he come to that. As I walked on, it occurred to me that the dog would get one of them. Oh well, even mutts need to live. The odd part is that despite the fact that I have a warm place to live and sleep, clean bedding, regular feed and washing facilities - all that manner of thing - it occurred to me that the nomad had something I don't have, several things in fact. He can come and go as he pleases, something I can't do, and he had a dog.

I like dogs, always have. A fellow isn't complete without a companion. Most fellows have a wife at my age but I don't want one of those. I tried marriage once - didn't like it and it won't happen again. Thankfully I am too old for that now anyway. I much prefer my own company these days, although a person to chat to from time to time always helps. I would prefer a dog.

Well, dogs are loyal and affectionate and demand nothing from us. We can talk to them, if the urge takes us, but the dog is just as happy sitting at our side silently for hours. Try getting a wife to keep quiet for hours - it's never going to happen. They don't listen either. In fact, the only time a woman listens is when it is her doing the talking.

My little sister Wendy tells me that a friend of hers has a dog which has just had pups, a German shepherd, and Wendy (in her insanity) has decided that she will get two of these pups for me as a present. The fact that, under current circumstances, I am not allowed so much as one of the fleas mentioned earlier as a pet, cuts no ice with Wendy. She has decided that I am having two dogs and that's that. See! They only listen when it's them doing the talking. Still, her heart's in the right place even if her thought processes are a little haywire.

Finally, for this one anyway, if you are reading this it is safe to presume that I have finally got the printer working - either that or I have acquired another one. So, now that I am on the internet or, as they call it in Lancashire, tinternet, I am now in a position to respond to any comments anyone wants to make or even to open up a dialogue with anyone who wants to do so. Try not to be rude, but at the same time say what you like - I'm a big lad and I find rudeness amusing most of the time. It comes with age you know. Things we once took personally in our callow youth now are merely funny. However, if anyone does feel the uncontrollable urge, at least have the courage to add your name - I do.

Well, it could be worse - I could be sitting under a bridge, surrounded by my goods and chattels and feeding chicken slices to little mutts.

The Voice In The Wilderness

1 comment:

bryan jennett said...

Hello Frank. Been following your case and reading your blogs for some time now. Actually I've been sharing your blogs on Facebook as well.Hope you don't mind. I did ask Andrew if he thought it would be ok. Have you joined yet? If so add me. I have an interest in miscarriages of justice. Also enquired about you a few times through Andrew. Hope you settling ok. Bryan Jennett.