Friday 23 October 2015
Warm and 18 degrees
Time to go and get the MOT on the dog. The lady at the pension is convinced he is losing his marbles and wants him to go on a substance called Candilat which would oxygenate his brain. I rang up the vet and she said to bring him in. Dog is thrilled and tries to pee on every piece of greenery in the vicinity of the cabinet véterinaire. No other dogs in there and no animals with weeping owners who are obviously taking a last journey together. Dog usually spends the waiting time getting knotted up in the leads of other dogs and annoying cats with affection. They retreat to the back of their cages and hiss.
We sit at reception and dog tries to get knotted up in the chair legs. On the walls are a range of dog foods. Foods for fat dogs and thin dogs, growing dogs, feeding dogs, dogs with renal and kidney problems. Granules for baby dogs. Softer stuff for old dogs with brown and tartared teeth. Dog, by now, is well wedged under the seats and having a sniffathon.
The vet emerges and pops him up on the bench. She shines a light in his eyes and says he has the beginnings of cataracts and he is quite deaf. Thought he could still hear the rustle of the dog chew packet at the end of the session.... His heart is good and he has tartar on his teeth. He has arthritis in his back legs and hips and she gives us some anti inflammatory - one in liquid form which I can squirt into his mouth and others in tablets which I don't know how on earth I am going to get down his neck.
My mother used to have poodles and she could pin them under her arm, pop the tablet onto the back of their throat and then massage their gullets until the pill was swallowed. I would need to be the size of Schwarzenegger to perform the same feat with an unwilling dog of our dog's size. He is described as medium however I am 5" 2" and the dog is 43% of my body weight. OH is completely useless - I shall have to resort to guile and pulverise the very large tablets into dust and sprinkle on his dog meat. There is no possibility of hiding them in a bit of butter...
We emerge, 64 euros the poorer, and dog again pees on everything and we run some errands and then back home. Watch Bargain Hunt. The most revolting, battered Indian painted screen surprisingly makes a very large profit. David Harper had chosen his clothing on a most 'likely to clash' basis.
OH goes into the kitchen to get together his fishing stuff and I doze on sofa. I think I may have had flu virus because I still feel completely exhausted. After a few minutes, he pops his head around the door and asks if I want a cup of tea and says he 'may have made a little mess'. He has created mammoth chaos so I shut the door and enjoy the tea and ignore the swearing and crashing and then, finally, he is ready to go and leaves with just a fine granulation of mud all over the kitchen floor and a dusting of ground bait on the cooker. I enjoy peace and quiet and catch up with writing last two days entries. The sun comes through the open window and the golden leaves rustle on the trees and I can hear the combines at the top of the hill on the uppermost maize fields. Dog snores. Time passes.
All too soon, it is time to go and see a property. Gleaned from the small ads, it is a 1975 property with a sad history. The man who commissioned the build died during the process and his wife didn't want to continue so mothballed the house until 1990. The owners have now converted it into a bright and spacious property with lovely terracing, pool with dolphin fountain, funky green beams and a fireplace which is in the wall between the kitchen and living room. I love a fire in a kitchen and have only known one other property which had one. Stuck to the walls of its village church, it was so difficult to see, despite being really lovely, that the owners gave up and have rented it out. Today's house had two downstairs bedrooms and one upstairs with balcony. Just 238500 euros or 172000 pounds sterling.
Drive back home in the fading light and the sky is a symphony of washed greys with the moon an icy half circle. Smudging on red on the horizon and the Pyrenees pale violet grey.