What a beautiful day. The sky promised adventures: hope, a decent walk, untroubled by rain, enhanced by the hills behind the town. Let's forget the Privet that festoons those sentinels and just head out, accompanied by 'the Perdy,' or is it me who is led by the leash, while she sniffs her way along pathways, a field of browning grass, in the hope of discovering new smells and stories left by other dogs.
Into the car; the red Toyota, and off we go, Perdy up on the back shelf, squeezing her way below the sloping back window. She often looks at me as if to say, "Hey, I know it's flasher but it ain't as comfortable up the back here!"
"Stop bitching, girl ... you've got the whole back seat too, to drop your bloody hair. Are you gonna clean it up? Don't think so."
Of course, she understands. I can tell by the look. We've been partners in crime for nearly seven years of adventures, joyful moments, and yes ... heroic episodes. Don't you all remember her rescuing a lovely lady who had fallen down the bank?
We cruised past the bay. The tide was coming in ... I think ... it's sometimes hard to tell. Do I go by the birds, or ... oh what the hell. It doesn't matter at times like these as I glance at the distant shores across the Firth of Thames. Maybe I'm heading that way later, for coffee with friends ... potty friends, or to be a little more precise ... pottery friends. The traffic is light. So far, there are no fleeing Aucklanders, who tend to flood this coastline, when COVID lockdowns loom! Radio New Zealand will inform us if anything changes.
The main street is busy, but there is a space outside the Bargain shop. I need to purchase a cheap plastic bowl for my chooks ... for their water. The old one appears to have a leak. I can't have my feathery semi-productive egg-laying friends becoming dehydrated. Hell ... those who elude Perdy's 'non-amorous advances' do kind of pay their way. They keep the back lawn short and crap around the fruit trees. That's got to be positive. I park, in the shade. One must be careful in Summer. "Behave, Perdy ... I'll only be a moment."
As I cross the road, I spy several brightly coloured plastic bowls. Perfect. The shop owner was putting other merchandise on the footpath. "I greet him and ask, "Do you want me to take those ones or the ones inside?"
He laughs."No ... those are the ones from next door." I had forgotten that the two shops are side-by-side. "Come in and I'll look for some," he says.
I follow him in and he disappears down the back. I seek him out and he is holding a selection of different coloured bowls. Perfect ."I'll take the pink one," I ventured. "The girls will like that. I think they're not particularly gender-specific in their tastes, eh." He smiled, probably wondering what the hell I was talking about. I completed my transaction and headed across the road towards my red Toyota. I jumped in the front seat, after throwing the bowl in the back seat. "Hey, Perdy ... I didn't realize the back windows were tainted. Oh well ... always new things to discover, eh.?"
No answering tail wag or little Perdy acknowledgement. What! No Perdy! She's escaped ... on the main street! HOW? I know I locked the car. Had some vigilante taken it upon themselves to free her from an imagined hot car... one parked in the shade? My heart missed a beat. Calm down or you'll AFIBRULATE! I noticed the floor mat was askew. Had the 'thief' tried to start the car?
My thoughts were interrupted by an indignant looking older gentleman, who was waving his hands about as he approached my car. Before he could open his mouth I implored, "Someone's stolen my dog."
"I don't know about your dog," he said, reasonably calmly now, " but why are you trying to steal my car?"
I shuddered ... from embarrassment or relief. I'll sort that out later. "Oh my God ... I'm so sorry I said, getting out of HIS red car. "Is this a Toyota? ... oops, a Mazda, Nice car. That's my car there ... with my dog. I think she's thinking I'm going nuts, going by that weird look on her face."
I think he smiled, but he wasn't laughing. I apologized again and fled towards my car, where I made quite a fuss of Perdy, before throwing the chook bowl in the back and carefully backing out. My thoughts were about how my car needed a good cleaning and how stupid I had been. The man's calmness could easily have taken another more difficult turn.
My sense of relief won through and I headed towards Denby field, to reward Perdy for her tolerance. We completed her circuit, going past the Warehouse and CAB, before stopping at 'Treats,' for one of their excellent coffees. The lovely barista asked if Perdy wanted water. Her kindness contrasted with my stupidity. Hell ... it's barely ten. I wonder what other adventures await me. Please ... let's have a COVID free day, So 'they've landed a vehicle on Mars! Wow.