Wednesday, 6 August 2014
Day 2 - Dear Carmel - I remember the dog...
Well here is day 2. I have been eagerly awaiting to get back to the desk and begin my second writing exercise, or should I say my Memory Journal. It's true walking the dog in the morning refreshes the creative juices, my mind talks to me a million miles an hour. I wish my brain had a built in Dictaphone, recording all the thoughts, the lines, the words I come up with; the dog must think I mad talking to myself.
I remember the dog, I remember his first day. There standing with chest pushed out and a look of mischief slightly hidden beneath his apprehension, was a dog who finally had a home. I don't know how long he'd been lost, a while I reckon by the look of his wiry ginger coat, the thinned-out hair almost completely missing - a lack of nutrition I presume.
The dog home named him Banjo, it's not a name I would have chosen, but don't get me wrong I like it and think it suits him. The funny thing is when he first arrived home, he didn't know his name, I tried calling him every dog name I could think of, names I thought someone else would have chosen, like Jack, Scruff, Ginger, Jackson, Joe, but none of them worked, he didn't respond to any of them.
Banjo's a jumper, he's a dog springboard, bouncing from a standstill he can make it over any fence. I have to tie him on a chain, I don't like doing it, but if I don't I risk this stupid mutt getting away, and I couldn't bare the thought of Banjo becoming lost again.
I try walking him with a lead, he pulls like a tractor, the strength is phenomenal, wrenching my shoulder socket with every attempt to chase anything that moves. Actually, he'd be better suited as a sleigh dog the way he digs those hinds in, wrestling with me to pull ahead, to take me on a run I don't think I'd be capable of keeping up with.
There's no mistake he's a street dog as he stands in the teaming rain while his dry, warm kennel remains unoccupied. He doesn't like his kennel and it appears from the torn pieces of hessian hanging from the metal frame, that he doesn't like his hammock bed either. I can't have him go cold, he must miss his creature comforts like a soft padded dog bed. I buy a padded bed big enough to squeeze into his kennel, encouraging him to keep warm. The next morning he is sitting in the middle of the yard, he looks pleased with himself, he looks at me as if to say, don't bother I don't want it. The soft padded bed is now nothing but the remains of shredded foam and stuffing littering his yard, soft white tufts surrounding him like snow.
I've replaced his lead with a harness, it stops him choking as he pulls me along if nothing else. He lives in a yard now, fenced just high enough to keep him from bounding over, his attempts to escape when he see's the cat made fruitless. He knows his name now, 'Banjo,' I call with every annoying bark he lets out when he see's a rogue kangaroo cross the yard, or another dog being walked by their owner out on the street. I love this dog, I wish he could tell me his story, his street story like street people get to do in 'The Big Issue.' I want to understand this complicated companion of mine, if only I could speak dog.