Posted by Tania Kindersley.
On Thursday night, I buried my dog. It has been a year since she died, and I had not been able to do it before now. That sounds absurd and melodramatic, but there it is. The sun shone, the family came, I planted a tree and put the ashes in, I said some words. Then we all went inside and drank champagne. It was the same day a year ago that I buried my father, so there was some symmetry in that. There was a lot of death, hovering about, so I had to concentrate very hard on the love and the trees, which are my great consolations.
The horrible person who has done horrible things continues to dog me. Sometimes, I can do zennish calm, and remember about living well being the best revenge. The Younger Brother calls it the Dalai Lama Let Go. (He is a great admirer of the Dalai Lama.) We say it very quickly, in unison: Dalia-Lama-Let-Go, as if it were a dancehall craze from the 1950s. Sometimes, my attempts at sagacity desert me and I write vengeful letters in my head. I suppose everyone has one horrible person. Perhaps it is a good contrast, to remind one of the loveliness of the Lovely Ones.
This morning, in the freezing cold, I go up to the mare. My new thing is to play games with her, to keep her amused. (There are horse people who would consider this nuts, but it makes me laugh.) I see if I can get her to trot after me when I set off at a run, and then stop when I stop. We do this without a rope. I think some people call it loose schooling. I call it highly diverting. She does it. Three times in a row, so it is not a fluke. I feel as flushed with joy and triumph as if I was leading in a Derby winner.
I get a faint sense she is humouring me, as if to say: better go along with the old girl. She seems slightly bemused when I shower her with congratulations. But her wibbly lower lip twitches, which is always a sign she is happy.
The tiny children come out to see her, and she lowers her head graciously so their little hands can reach her soft muzzle. She dips her forehead to them in regal greeting, and they stare at her in awe and wonder. We all groom the little white pony, who now has a blog name. She is Welsh, and the children chose a tremendous Welsh name for her: it is Myfanwy. Apparently it means ‘my lovely little one’ which could not be more appropriate.
The sky lowers, and darkens. The forecast is for snow. Snow. The Pigeon shivers in the wind, and looks at me reproachfully, as if I could do something about this unseasonal weather. But the garden is starting to bloom, despite it all, and the Duchess’s beautiful apple tree stands up straight and strong in its new home.
Pictures are from Thursday.
Duchess's tree, and the wild garden I made for her:
Pot table, tarted up specially for the occasion:
Younger niece with Pigeon:
Ready for her close-ups:
Red the Mare:
With Myfanwy the pony:
Their view, with snow clouds coming in:
The hill, in the last bit of light we've seen for a while: