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Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Dusty's Day

It is comforting to know that some living creatures actually thrive as the ground freezes and the frost etches patterns on the window and picks out the intricacies of the millions of spiders’ webs threading round the bushes.

Dusty is in her element. She was halfway down the drive by the time I finished zipping my final layer (of five), pulling on my second hat and squirming into the woollen gloves. Her long coat seems to be adequate by itself. Or maybe that’s why she runs – to keep from freezing.

Sometimes the rosy hues of dawn are vibrant and the streaks are distinct, but this morning it looked as if a giant artist had flung a brush-full of pink paint across the whole canvas of the sky. Indistinct lines of pink striped it from east to west, north to south, and the whole vista appeared as if it were covered by a gossamer overlay, producing colours that were somehow muted.

A flock of birds passed overhead, silent. Perhaps to chatter or squawk would have used energy they couldn’t afford as they scoured the frozen earth for a sign of food. ‘Bird feeders at our place!’ I wanted to advise, but my mouth was kind of frozen shut.

Dusty flung herself onto her back on the frozen grass, writhing and wriggling as she let the sharp needles give her a welcome massage. Funny she won’t let me brush her without acting like I’m trying to torture her, and yet out here...

We passed the coal man as we left home for our walk, reversing up our driveway with another load of badly-needed fuel. His constant companion, sitting perky and alert, rode shotgun, as always. A cute little beagle, who he can never let out of the cab to greet Dusty because she would hare off into the field for hours, he says.
I suppose frozen winters are his kind of weather, too. 

Well, I’m going to put on the coffee, and another jumper. And thank God that he made a world in which there are seasons which change, so we don’t have to do this year round.

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