Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Moocher, Border Collie dog extraordinaire - co-star of White Lies and Custard Creams - romantic comedy with a dash of mystery

I’ve received many emails from readers asking about Moocher, the Border Collie who co-stars with Liz Houston in my first novel, ‘White Lies and Custard Creams’. So I thought I’d write a blog post and try to convey what my old Mooch the Pooch meant to me. He’d always had a way with woofs and I know he will be happy to be on Monty and Rosie’s blog like this.


He was a stray. He just turned up one day and stayed. He knew he’d come to the right place, and I knew he’d come to the right place, too. This is a limerick I wrote after he rather inconsiderately popped his clogs and left me with nothing but an empty basket:

Into my life one day a Border Collie strolled
He smelt sweetly of that in which he’d rolled
He’d come to share his life with me
And now I’ll never be free
Of fox poo aroma, and love worth more than gold

He had such a sense of joy about him. He was exactly the sort of dog who would leap up and catch snowflakes on his tongue:

And he always made a point of rolling in autumn leaves - one of life’s greatest pleasures (especially if there was fox poo underneath them, of course):

He was a very clever dog. It’s no wonder my paperwork’s in such a mess since he’s been gone. He'd be shocked...

There was always a hug waiting if I needed one:


And his live and let-live philosophy definitely taught me a thing or two!


 He was a very generous dog in every way. He would have distributed bones and gravy to the world if he could:


No one could stay cross with him for long. He could wrap the most dog-hating person around his little claw in no time at all. He was such a charmer!

He was always ready for a game and would play for hours and hours just to keep me entertained:

He is always with me, just out of the corner of my eye; always there peering over my shoulder, checking I’m not making too much of a hash of things. He is the extra weight in Jeff-Dog’s head as he pushes it into my hands. He makes me watch out for myself more than I previously might, and he bolsters my courage when I need it.

He was the most extraordinary dog and taught me so much about so many things. This is why Liz, my heroine in ‘White Lies and Custard Creams’ has to have her dog with her all the time, or at least know he’s around and she can see him if she needs to. She needs him to keep going through life, no matter what, trying to make sense of it. And together they will make it through, even if not wildly successfully, at least always with a laugh!

And then he left me and life really was just an empty basket, and I felt as though I’d been punched with a big spike that took all my breath and gave nothing back.

This was when I was first introduced to the Rainbow Bridge. Someone sent me the poem which I shall paste in below for anyone who’s not read it. It is comforting. I’d always known Moocher would be there for me, wherever I was, in whatever plane, but with the Rainbow Bridge there is a ‘real’ picture in my mind which makes it so much more certain.

So - I know that Moocher is waiting for me at Rainbow Bridge (along with quite a few others).

In the meantime, I and others often howl tributes to absent friends and I could swear I can hear Moocher joining in:

If you have any more questions do feel free to get in touch and I shall answer them when I’m not bawling my eyes out like I am now. Jeff-Dog is pressing his head heavily into my leg as I sit at my desk, and Moocher watches us, grinning his furry face off, knowing we know he’s there.
Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.
Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....  

Author unknown...

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Wanna hug? We have Border Collie hugs, Whippet hugs, Corgi hugs and Cat hugs. Come & get your hug here!

This is the 'You're so fab' hug.

The comfy hug

The 'I can always rely on you' hug

And the: 'I will always love you' hug. (and the 'I will always worry about you' hug, too)