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We travel together often, Daisy, Wilf and I and it has become something of a chaotic affair. We pour ourselves and assorted paraphernalia, portable dog bowls, leads, dog coats, water bottles, blankets, towels, treats, wellingtons, waterproofs and the like into my tired little car and head off.

When Daisy was a single lady it was a much more sedate activity requiring a lot less effort. She would sit back on her haunches in the front seat of the car, recline against the upholstery, ever so slightly raise her right paw and gaze enigmatically out of the window. The sight caused much amusement amongst my friends, neighbours and passing travellers. She was very Garbo in those days.

Daisy is, as you know, a dextrous and supple individual. Travelling in the car she has always found it easy to shift her balance extremely well in order to remain upright whilst I corner or take a roundabout. She leans into the bends like a seasoned TT rider taking them all with ease.

We first noticed this phenomenon just after she came to live with us. We used to travel daily along the narrow, winding lanes of Cornwall in order that I might catch the Cremyll Ferry into Plymouth for my work. She would sit on MOH’s toolbox in the back of the car and placing a steadying paw either side of the front seats peer out intensely through the gap. Ears cocked and eyes alert she would follow the twists and turns of the road ahead whilst occasionally turning to absentmindedly lick my ear. She handled each bend with aplomb. She would then hop into the front seat for the return journey home, sometimes before I had fully left it.

If I were to anthropomorphise, I would say that on the beach of life Daisy would have to be a surfer and, I apologise here, something of a cliché, with tousled hair, bleached blonde by the sun, clad in the finest make of wet suit and riding the biggest waves on the very best of boards. She would undoubtedly be a champion.

Wilf, on the other hand, would be the unfortunate chap who is painfully salmon pink at the end of the day from too much sunbathing and too little factor 8, dressed in day-glo bermudas with a muffin top. He would be the person the RNLI would have to rescue after he had been haplessly washed out to sea on his plastic lilo.

Meanwhile, back in doggy form……

We travel everywhere these days in a snow like flurry of dog hair. There is also a tenacious battle of wills for the window seat. Daisy usually wins and maintains her position by leaning forward so that her back paws are on the seat and her front paws are on the dashboard. Wilf has tried to emulate her on numerous occasions with varying degrees of success. Unfortunately, he is quite a stiff legged little chap (think the legendary James Cagney dancing in ‘Yankee Doodle Dandy’) and consequently has a poor sense of balance (unlike the immortal Mr Cagney). Wilf has fallen off a floor cushion before now, whilst it was actually still on the floor!

I have lost count of the number of times on our travels he has suddenly pitched forward and slid inelegantly off the passenger seat and into the foot-well. On each occasion it has been a prat fall worthy of Del-Boy. Like Del-Boy, Wilf has also mastered the art of getting up very quickly in that age old and very human fashion of hoping that by doing so no-one will notice that anything untoward has happened at all.

I can’t be sure but I am almost certain that on each occasion Daisy was smiling!

Bright Blessings
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