My scarf today is a reminder of Mothering Sunday a few years ago when I am about to experience something unusual.
I always forget that it is much colder in the Wiltshire countryside, especially in a large rambling thatched 17th century house and I am lying in bed feeling rather chilly. I live in an urban area so I am used to constant light, but here it is totally velvet black and the stars are much brighter. My door is closed and outside I hear tiny whimpering noises. I blindly feel my way to open the door and I am delighted to sense that Tara, the black Labrador has come to visit. She is not allowed to jump on to the beds, but I imagine she would warm my feet and I give her permission to elevate her position. She is holding something in her mouth, as is her custom when she greets anyone. Usually she grabs a dirty trainer, a smelly sock or discarded undies, and I know I must not allow a muddy shoe on the clean duvet, so I am relieved it is a soft object. She starts off at the bottom of the bed but gradually works her way to my pillow. I know this is verboten but how comforting to have her soft head beside mine. I caress her silken ears and we cuddle together. My hand traces the shape of her head and I feel the fingers of my furry gloves dangling from her mouth. Better get them from her, otherwise they will be all slimy. Hang on.....I didn’t bring any gloves with me. It must be one of her toys. I wonder what it is? In the pitch dark, I feel a fat tummy and imagine Paddington Bear or Winnie the Pooh, a small bear certainly. Tara has been making tiny whimpers and now another animal sound comes from beyond the door.
Daffodil, the tabby cat, is demanding to join the slumber party. I ignore the cat and continue my gentle stroking. Again I trace the shape of the soft toy with its long wobbly legs, fat tummy and now to the head. I feel the round face and then up and up.....very long ears. I reach for my torch and see a grey bunny with a black button nose. I jump out of bed sending my iPad flying, narrowly miss tripping over the cat, followed by the dog with her mouth stuffed with her prize and I call to my sleeping granddaughter in the next bedroom. No answer. Down the stairs, through the sitting room, hall and up the stairs to the next wing where my daughter sleeps and I shout my question again....Has Tara a toy rabbit? A firm reply in the negative. For twenty minutes I had been sharing my pillow with a dog and another wild creature and I had lovingly stroked both!
My daughter swung into action, got the dog, still clutching the rabbit in her jaws into the garden. Daylight was just breaking. The cat which had been in hot pursuit was locked in the kitchen. The dog was finally tempted by a biscuit to drop her ‘carry’. Unbelievably, the presumed dead bunny kicked up his heels and made for the dense undergrowth.
I will never know how the cat caught the rabbit, carried it home, entered the house through two cat flaps and gave up possession to the dog. I shall also never know whether I heard whimpers of pleasure from the dog, or tiny squeals from the rabbit. I wonder what it’s story was on returning to the burrow? Maybe it started like this.....Well, you’ll never believe where I’ve been today!
I do hope, dear readers, that you enjoy where I take you each day. Until tomorrow....
Busy Bee, Scarf Face!