Oscar was lucky enough to grow up with three children, chasing balls and sticks, jumping on the trampoline with them, and instinctively trying to round them up when they got a bit too rowdy. They shoved him into princess and superman costumes, painted his toe-nails, plaited his fur and tied ribbons around his ears. He never once growled at them, and adored every minute of his busy life.
Two of the children left our home in France to move to Australia last August, and, with the passing of Oscar, it truly felt like the end of an era.
Padding around our silent, tidy house, I tried to look on the bright side. 'We'll be able to travel more easily,' I said to my husband. 'And you won't have to clean up the crap from the garden every weekend.'
'Yes,' he said, into the long silence, 'life should be a lot easier now ... but it is kind of too quiet, don't you think?'
'I know,' I said. 'But we don't want another dog, do we?'
'No ... we won't get another dog.'
A week ago, some invisible force found us at the local animal shelter, a heart-wrenching experience in the best of times. A few hours later, we headed home with Holly, the dog we were never going to get.
Meet Holly... she's a 9 month-old cross Labrador collie, and possibly something else - a crazy, exhausting, adorable, bundle of beans.
So, since we don't have a new doggy, I can get back to writing my book ...
HOLLY AND ME (DAY I)
HOLLY AND JEAN-YVES (DAY 1)
NO DOGS ON THE BEDS! (DAY 3!)
I SAID NO DOGS ON THE BEDS!
HOW'S A GIRL SUPPOSED TO WRITE, WITH THAT FACE AT THE WINDOW?
HOLLY'S FIRST BIRTHDAY PARTY INVITE -with Pati
A BOY, A BED AND A HOUND