Time – it waits for no man or dog.

Little Annabella and I have come a long way together.  The first night with me, she climbed onto my head where she slept knowing that I was near.  Nothing much has changed over the last eight years, but of late she is tiring and not the enthusiastic walker/runner she used to be.  Age suddenly creeps up on you, she now gets a little glint in her eyes, she makes her legs all stiff and stops, and I get the message loud and clear, that no more walking is required, she wants to be carried.  When did this all happen, have I failed to notice her ageing, or has my demise coincided with hers and gone unnoticed.  While taking her out just now, where she similarly refused to walk anymore, I was catapulted back to New Years Eve at least 5 years ago.

Precious and I had no set plans for New Year, but had decided that we would definitely do something together after the kids had all departed for their various venues after “pre-drinks.”  Not wanting her to spend too much time alone, off we marched to give her a lovely outing before we went out.  Ribbon in hair, attitude in her little hips, off we strutted in unison.  In and around Newlands, up to the Forest, back down to Main Road and then a meander back to the cottage.  She was puffing and thirsty, and I left her drinking as I started getting ready to go out. I was suddenly aware that she was not with me and went in search of her.  She was lying prone, little legs stiff and her eyes were wide.  I picked her up onto her feet, she just keeled over.  Hysterically shouted for Precious.  We tried again, talking gently to her, picked her up, tried to get her to stand and come to us, nope, over she went, legs straight out.  Cape Town, New Year’s Eve, not our home town at that stage, so no knowledge of vets.  We wrapped her up in her little pink blanket and headed for the car at a run.  We went past 2 Vets, and obtained an emergency hospital number and address.  The trip seemed to take ages.  I whispered to her the whole way, pleading her to be well.  We screeched into the driveway and were escorted straight into the rooms as they were expecting us.  Precious in the meantime, was wide-eyed, filling in forms, terrified that this little outing was going to break the bank.

The Vet walked in, a caring young woman.  I explained my story.  She gently picked Annabella up, while stroking her and placed her on her feet…..Annabella dear darling, looked up and trotted across the table to me, not a care in the world, absolutely fine.  Gobsmacked.  She was either temporarily struck down with tiredness, or she didn’t want me to go out?  Go figure.  Well with a lot of embarrassment and a donation to the Hospital, they couldn’t charge as there as nothing wrong, we left with our “tails” between our legs.  It was now close to 11pm.  We ceremoniously dumped her at home and went in search of some supper and a little cheer.  Barristers, an infamous little pub in Newlands found us.  The owner insisted that he could rustle up some food and we spent probably one of my most favourite New Year’s Eves ever.

So much has changed in our lives since then, but you somehow don’t notice the important stuff when you are caught up in the business of living each day.  My little girl has aged.  No longer prima donna antics, just shit happens.

“Time is the indefinite continued progress of existence and events that occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future”

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