Moving to a new home in a nice rural location for a complete change from the hustle of populated areas didn’t turn out as one might have expected. It wasn’t the cows mooing all night, and shops some distance from the cottage, it was lonely, with no friends. Lost I was, until I met the best friend I have ever had. A Sheep Dog. I became a bit nervous because her eyes just stared straight through me. She was telling me something. Now I shall tell you.
Also by Peter John on obooko:
Luck, rather than fame or fortune, brought me to a small cottage in Wales, near the sea. Idyllic as it was, the truth is, life was lonely, until rescue came in the guise of Fly, a Sheep Dog, herself rescued from a farmer, one of those begrudgers who cursed the living world. By his reckoning, the world was in debt to him.
Fly, because she was fast; but she had other qualities, like a nervous temperament, lovely looks, and a taste for freedom that, to her surprise, pleased me. One day she cleverly legged it from the field behind the cottage where we walked. I found her wandering by a neighbour’s house, and returned. When I went to put on her collar, she bit me, and expected to be punished. When no reprisal came, understanding resulted, and from it a friendship that grew gently with each day.
Car- rides were an early delight, short runs at first, gradually opening out through the spidery lanes of west Carmarthenshire, where, on winter days we would stop at inviting side –turns and venture the unknown together. Down muddy brambled tunnels we would try to find just where they led, to see what was at the end. Sometimes nothing, just a gradual disappearance of some way into a field, marsh or moorland. An old sheep- way, perhaps, a Roman or medieval road. Someone s long ago walk to work, and journey home, a route to school, to church, to a shop or a neighbour. Paths where ancient feet trod: pilgrims, bleeding feet bound for St David’s shrine on the sea s edge, remorseful; children with hoops, cattle drovers knitting stockings, lovers, lusty for white skin, stumbling by moonlight to tap an expectant widow.