Dedicated (as in faithful; not as in killed and on-backs-with-legs-twitching-feebly) followers of this blog will recall the ongoing contest between collies and self. They want out, and I want them in. They dig holes, dislodge bits of fence, and discover ever-increasing leaping powers. I fill holes, fix fences, or heighten the obstacles.
Recently I defeated all but the intrepid Toby. Tess and the rest gave up and waited for walkies. Toby, however, has continued to pop off at least once every few days to patrol his territory and leave me trying to guess the latest escape route.
Early this week he did his thing again, and the usual morning vanishing-act had me scratching my head to figure out the latest route. I thought I had found and plugged it, but he was not to be seen again just after midday. This was unusual. Once a day normally satisfies him.
As afternoon went into evening and past pooch supper-time, concern became panic. We scoured the neighbourhood and enquired at local vets, all in vain. It seemed pretty definite that he had found the trouble he has been looking for.
One o’clock in the morning and I stepped outside for a last smoke. I was just about to re-enter the house when a black shape came wriggling up to me – INSIDE the grounds with gates all still closed – wagging his tail with that hesitant, apologetic one-sided swing they have after being naughty. Of course, instead of yelling at him, I hugged him a great deal.
Then I offered him food and water. He didn’t want either. What he wanted was me. He refused to stay in the kitchen area of the house and came to bed with me. He followed me everywhere I went for the next couple of days.
After a really good run yesterday, when young R decided to bunk school in favour of going down beachcombing and taking a long walk and building sandcastles and tunnels and paddling and finding cowries (well, one!) Toby has reverted to normal. He went for a walk on his own again this morning while I was occupied with other things. Ah, well.
I’d simply love to know what happened to him, though. Attempted dognap and he had to escape from them? Someone thought he was a stray and he had to escape from them? Those are the only possibilities I can think of.
Anyway, I think I have traced the latest route and plugged it.
I say that several times a week.
© Colonialist June 2011 (Letterdash/WordPress)