Friday, 16 June
It’s been a while since David has said: “I know we bought this house for that damn dog.”
He is of course talking about Deux Champs, the property we purchased four years ago in the Perche, and our rescue dog Tasha (aka la Princesse).
I can think of three possible reasons for the pause in my husband's refrain:
1. He’s got other things on his mind
2. He sees better now what’s in it for him
3. Acceptance (sigh)
There’s certainly been a lot of distraction (Option 1). Over the last three months, with many visits from family and friends, we've hardly seen the time pass. The dog gets lost in the shuffle, except when demanding attention, which is often, and guests have kindly helped pick up the slack.
When not busy with people, we've been much focused on the out of doors. It's been an odd spring. For three weeks in May a northeast wind blew non-stop and so bitterly, that I dressed covered up like a past-it, reclusive celebrity for the morning walk. Here we are on the 31st:
At least the cold nights kept the flowers refrigerated and thus vigorous and vivid...
...during the day...
Thankfully, because they certainly weren't getting any rain to keep them alive, even when the wind finally changed direction, and summer (before it's even summer!) landed on us like molten lead.
But work on Claire's Mediterranean, drought-resistant garden has continued apace. Despite temperature and aridity...
...nature has managed...
The flourishing garden, along with the house itself, which now feels like a refuge rather than a train station of revolving workers....
...make it a cinch to see what's in it for us (Option 2). If I thought Deux Champs was a dream come true when we bought it, I was speaking too soon. David, though he might wax less rhapsodically, would agree that even paradise can get an upgrade.
As for Option 3, Acceptance (sigh), maybe it doesn't really matter what David thinks, because Tasha remains convinced that Deux Champs and lands well beyond its boundaries constitute her kingdom. Extended hunting excursions may be less frequent than in our early days here but, lest we slip into complacency, one day in May, she was gone for five (5) hours. The scenarios that ran through my mind of what might have happened to her were not pretty. When she did finally return, I was so relieved, I didn't notice until evening that she'd gashed herself on barbed wire or a bramble (again!), meaning that by the time I got her to the vet the next day, it was too late to stitch and bandage, resulting in this:
Fortunately, my sister told me about a travel-style neck cushion that would also stop her licking the wound, and Tasha's mood improved.
So what's the reason David has stopped speculating on why we're here? Multiple choice formats often have a final option, and that, I think, best answers the question:
4. All of the above