Sunday, 28 April 2013

Sunday 28 April 2013

"YOU'RE PLANNING A WHAT...?!?" shouted Betty, staring in disbelief at little Gisèle, who flinched at her friend's angry barks.  "ARE YOU  COMPLETELY OUT OF YOUR GOURD!?!"

"No, I am not." replied Giz defiantly.  "And what is a gourd?"
"It's a - oh, never mind.  But an 'I Love Peaches Party'?  Seriously, Gizzles: Are you mental?  No, really - ARE you MENTALLY ILL?!"
"No!" repeated Gisèle, "I think it's a nice idea to have a party for Peaches."  A note of sulky defiance was beginning to creep into her voice.
"But...  but..." spluttered Elizabeth, so indignant that she was almost beyond speech, "Why?!"
"Because I think that he is very unhappy, and very lonely, and very sad - and that is really, really why he is so cross and mean and nasty all of the time!" explained Gizmo, her beautiful eyes shining with excitement.  "I think that if he had some friends he will be happy and nice."
"Then you're a bigger t*t that I thought."
"I's NOT a t*t."
"But to forgive everything that he has ever done....?!"

"I forgave you." said Gisèle quietly.

She had not barked this in an unkind or snide way, but merely to demonstrate a point - but it had a profound effect on Betty.  The Giant Schnauzer nodded, remembering how she had felt on the occasions when she had injured the little Parson Jack Russell Terrier - almost killed her during the latest "incident", for Gisèle had ceased to breathe on three occasions and been revived (twice by my partner, once by the vet) in this more serious episode - and, after the event, had been met with nothing but love, forgiveness and open arms.  Betty was duly humbled.

"AND," continued Giz, with a sly look in her eye, "Laddie has already barked that he is going to come...!"
"Oh!" exclaimed Betty, somewhat startled.  "Oh... well...  I suppose it might not be TOO bad if he'll be there..."

Gisèle giggled - but managed to tactfully disguise it as a cough.  And so the party plans begin...!


Still no sign of Ewan "up here".  I'll admit that this is beginning to concern me.  Someone as pure of heart and generous of spirit will not have gone to "the other place" - of that I am 100% certain.

Yet, where could he be...?

Monday, 22 April 2013

Monday 22 April 2013

This is my 400th blog post.  But I have no pleasure in writing it.  I take up my keyboard for the very worst of reasons and with the heaviest of hearts.

Our small part of the world has lost one of its greatest treasures - and is consequently a darker and less pleasing place.  One who was proud to bear the genes of Canus Canidae and did them much honour has gone.

Ewan is dead.

Yes - my dear gangly-limbed friend; selfless, warm-hearted, loving and adorably insane, Ewan, has breathed his last.

His owner and my partner noticed that he had been a little quieter than usual on Monday last week and remarked upon it, for Ewan was always very robust in health.  He seemed to get over it by the following day, however, and was still playing with his football the last time my partner saw him.

At the end of the week, alas, Ewan was noticeably quieter again and did not want to eat his supper.  He was taken to the vet the next day, where significant internal bleeding was discovered.  At first it was thought that there was some minor damage to his spleen, which could be safely repaired.  Tragically it was not to be.  When the vet commenced surgery the scale of the matter became alarmingly clear.  A massive tumour in poor, good Ewan's liver, too big and too far gone to be operated on.  The kindest decision was made - which was not to awaken him from his surgery and go on to usher him into that most eternal, peaceful, of sleeps.

I sped back to - well, you know, dear Reader, to find him - but I could not.  Only Kipper waited for me there, alongside my beloved Isolde.

I cannot describe to you, lovely Reader, the anguished wails and sobs of Ewan's bereft widow Fizzy.  They would break your heart, as surely they broke mine.  Her screams of grief, her denials - that he had only stepped away for a short while and would be back at any moment - and her pleadings: "YOU came back to bark to us Jazz, bring HIM back too!  PLEASE!"  I cannot.  I don't know why I came back.  Yet I never have, and I never will, truly return.  'Tis but a half-life, this return of mine.  Like the Resurrection Stone in the final Harry Potter books, it cannot truly restore the living; nothing can.  Only moving on to The Next Place can ultimately bring peace.  But poor Fizz-Bang's - and my own - grief is too raw for such discussions.  I, who have always been able to find something to bark on any occasion, find that I am empty on this occasion.  My barks are spent - there is nothing I can say to assuage her grief.

Jasper Horatio Stafford finds that there are not words enough.


Ewan's body was laid to rest in a peaceful area of a quiet, protected, woodland.

He sleeps now in eternal peace, in the shade of a vast, mighty ancient Beech tree.  Birds sing in the branches above him, a bank of Primroses blossom beside him, and before him lies a beautiful outlook onto verdant pasture and rolling hills beyond.

So please, after you have read this, I urge you to fill your glass with a favourite drink, raise it up, and send out a toast to Ewan - wherever his spirit roams.  Frustrating, funny, foolish - and Friend.

Ewan on my patio, whilst his beloved Fizzy watches on,
when they visited my home for a weekend-stay last summer.

He truly was the greatest of dogs.

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Sunday 14 April 2013

Well, it has been a week since "the attack" and Gisèle, I am happy to bark, is making an excellent recovery.  She and Betty are the greatest of friends once more (though this is more due to Gisèle's unequalled capacity for forgiveness and Betty's guilty conscience than anything else).  Giz still has a few days' worth of medication to take, but she's back to her normal levels of energy and mischief.  Betty's conscience is obviously still pricking her, as she pads very carefully around Giz.  Yesterday, Gisèle attempted to engage Betty in a play-fight.  Betty was pleased to comply - until Giz happened to turn her head, exposing her scarred and shaved neck.  The Giant Schnauzer gulped audibly and stared down at the pink and scabbed neck of her little friend with a stricken expression.  Muttering to herself, Betty backed off from Gisèle and took herself off to sit quietly in another room.  Poor Giz was left looking bewildered; my partner gave her a hug and then the both of them a chew each, but Betty couldn't be persuaded to resume the play-fight.

And, with that, I must conclude this little update.  Gisèle has made it clear that she does not wish the unfortunate episode to be discussed any further, for the sake of Betty's feelings.  I can't say that I share Gisèle's empathy.  If I had been the one that had been savaged, then Betty would now be awaiting the return of her owner in boarding kennels, never to return.  But Giz is now the alpha-dog in this household; it is therefore her decision and not mine - and Giz loves Betty and therefore Betty stays.  So: enough.

The weather is very changeable at the moment; summer seems reluctant to arrive.  My partner has bought lots of seeds for the garden, but has not yet planted them.  The reason for this is that Betty and Gisèle have found themselves an exciting new entertainment: digging.  My partner is keen to get her garden seeded, in order to have borders full of fragrant blooms in the late summer and early autumn, but clearly sees the futility of planting-up, only to have everything turned up immediately afterwards by a pair of giggling furry clowns.

In the absence of home-based mischief, therefore, Betty and Gisèle have been content to sit on the patio, enjoying the surroundings and the warmer weather.  And thus it was yesterday, with Giz pottering around the borders in the garden whilst Betty dozed on the sofa, when the wretched scion of evil that is Peaches the cat sauntered past on the lookout, as always, for trouble.
"Alright, bum-fluff?" he sneered at Gisèle.
"That is not my name. My name is Gisèle." she replied.  Peaches merely sniffed disdainfully.
"That great fat grey old sow staying with you at the moment?" he continued.  As Giz opened her snout to reply Betty, with most unfortunate timing, wandered into the garden through the French Windows.  "Ay-aye; The Kraken wakes..." he muttered.  Betty simply glared at him and sat down as far away from him as she could muster within the garden, having long-ago concluded that any breath spent on Peaches was breath and effort wasted.
"Betty is not fat." Gisèle persisted.  "She is a very big dog with lots of thick curly fur, but she is actually quite slender under her coat."
"Alright hippo-hips?" hailed Peaches, ignoring Giz completely.  As the little Jack Russell Terrier turned around to look back and roll her eyes at Betty, still sat at the back of the garden, Peaches noticed the still horrific-looking wounds in her slender little neck.  "**** me, who did that to you?!" mewed Peaches.
"None of your business!" yipped Giz, not looking at the wretched black cat, as Betty shifted uncomfortably on her patio slab.  Peaches, not being one to let a sudden uncomfortable tension in the air pass him by, looked slowly from Gisèle to Betty and back again, a malevolent smile forming on his leering face.

"She did it to you, didn't she?!" meowed Peaches, unable to suppress the malicious glee from his voice. "So she's not as stupid as she looks!  Well, well, well...  I'm getting a new sense of respect for you, lardy... What happened?  Did the little rat try and sneak a bite of your 87th pie of the day?!"
"Oh, p*ss off." grunted Betty, shaking her head.  Peaches laughed.
"What I can't understand though," he went on, cackling to himself, "Is why you didn't go the whole hog and finish the job?  I mean, obviously there's no meat on the rat, but the satisfaction of killing the annoying little tick would've more than made up for it..."

Peaches grew suddenly tense.  "Better luck next time, tubby!" he called to Betty as he sprang over the fence to the river and hastened towards the allotments.  We couldn't account for his rapid departure until we heard the click of claws on pavement from the opposite direction and turned to see Laddie, the Cockney market-trader's dog from the far cul-de-sac, trotting up.  Back along the road behind him, we could see his owner washing his small van.
"Little git." muttered Laddie, watching the last glimpse of Peaches' tail disappearing amongst the compost bins on the allotments.  He then turned to the girls "'Ullo treacles!" he grinned.  Laddie was very sweet on Betty, who didn't seem to return his affections quite as passionately.  "How yer doin', duchess?!  That little claw-rag bothering you?"
"I wouldn't waste my time and effort on being disturbed by that ghastly little insect."  replied Betty with a sigh, coming over to greet Laddie politely.
"Laddie, Peaches was REALLY rude to Betty." piped up Giz, "He said some very mean and nasty things to her."
"Did he now?" frowned Laddie, "Don't you worry darlin', I'll give that little scrote more than nasty words if I catch hold of him."

As Gisèle beamed up at the charming Laddie he couldn't help but notice, as Peaches had done before him, the significant scarring on Giz's neck. "Bl**din' Chr*st, gal, who did that to you?!" he exclaimed, forgetting his manners.  Recollecting himself, he muttered an apology for his language although he still looked with a stunned expression at Gisèle's wounds.  Giz looked uncomfortable and Betty positively squirmed.
"Erm... I can't remember..." mumbled Giz.
"Blimey, you can't remember?!  You're lucky you wasn't killed, princess - they're close to all the important veins in yer neck, them wounds!  How'd you survive that?!"
"Erm...well it sort of happened quite suddenly..."
"Must've been a big b*gg*r, the size of them teeth-marks!"  He turned his attention to Betty.  "What about you, duchess?  They didn't go for you as well, did they?"  Betty mumbled something indistinct.  "How come you weren't able to defend the little 'un?!"
"I think Betty was a bit busy at the time." yipped Gisèle, eager to avoid embarrassing Elizabeth.  "But it's OK, I'm all right.  It doesn't hurt any more and it looks loads worse than it is!"
"Blimey." muttered Laddie again, shaking his head and sighing as he looked at Gisèle's neck again.  "Well, you were d*mn lucky, that's all I can bark.  D*mn lucky.  You look after yourself, treacle - you're too sweet to get snuffed out by some dirty ol' thug."
"Excuse me..." mumbled Betty as she stood up and crept guiltily back into the house.

"She all right?"asked Laddie, watching her go with regret.
"Oh yes!" replied Giz, "I think she's just a bit tired today, that's all.  Listen, Laddie, I've got a plan for Peaches - d'you want to hear it?!"
"Do I want to hear it?! Oh yes, anything to sort out that rotten stinking apple!"
"Well," began Gisèle, "I think that Peaches must be very, very unhappy deep down inside himself.  He's so mean to everyone and I've never seen him with any friends-"
"He don't deserve no friends."
"No, but everyone should have friends!  Peaches must be so lonely.  Maybe that's why he is always so mean?  I think that I would like to be friends with Peaches and then he wouldn't be always so very angry and horrible to everyone.  So I have decided.  I am going to have a big party called "I Love Peaches Day" and lots of people can come and make friends with Peaches and then he won't be so miserable."

I have to confess that I was stunned.  Laddie seemed similarly affected as, when Gisèle looked up at him after she'd finished chattering, he was gaping down at her with his mouth hanging open.
"What d'you reckon?!" she grinned, wagging her tail.
"I reckon you're a couple o' plums short of a full fruit salad." muttered Laddie in disbelief.

But Gisèle was not to be deterred.
"You'll come to the party, though, Laddie, won't you?" she asked, fixing her lovely brown eyes on him beseechingly.
"No way!" he barked, shaking his head firmly, "I'd sooner roast me own 'nads off than go to anything involving that evil creature!"
"Betty will be there..." added Giz, with a sly smile.
"I'll bring some snacks." retorted Laddie without missing a beat, which caused me to burst out laughing.  "Little pies, sausages, dips, y'know.  An' I'll see if I can get some of me girls to come along..." (by this, Laddie meant his increasing fan-club of female feline groupies, who followed him around and hung on his every word with slavish devotion).
"Yayyy!  Brilliant!"  cheered Gisèle, going on to explain in further detail her plans for her "I Love Peaches Day" and how making friends with him would lead to lasting happiness and peace for all...

You may call me cynical, dear reader, but I cannot see any good coming from Gisèle's scheme.  In fact, I suspect things may go very badly wrong...

Until next time, then...

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Sunday 7 April 2013

I know you were expecting Peaches-related developments.  Alas, however, I have wretched news to dissemble.

Gisèle has been VERY badly injured.  By Betty.

Emergency surgery this afternoon saved Giz; it's touch-and-go at the moment - she returns to the vet at 8.30am on Tuesday.  Betty is distraught and racked with guilt.

Please remember them both in any prayers you may offer up.

And please don't blame Betty - she had been "wound-up" by a third party (certainly not me - but who shall remain nameless) and is mortified by what she has done.  Her noble owner will be paying for Gisèle's surgeries, medicines and pain (though she does not know this yet).

But Gisèle, true to form, has ALREADY forgiven Betty - even though the little dear-heart's life still hangs in the balance, she took the time to kiss Betty and assure her that she bore no malice or ill-will, before my weeping partner carried her back up to the darkened bedroom to lie in peace in the hopes that, with tranquillity and repose will come recovery.

A close-up of Gisèle's neck - she lies on the bed, her
left ear & eye are under my partner's bloodied fingers.

Please pray for sweet Gisèle's survival.  She is too, too young to lie beside me yet in eternal repose.

I thank you.

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Saturday 6 April 2013

"She's so beautiful..." sighed Ewan (for it was he - the gangly dog belonging to my partner's colleague, Ewan being irresistibly lovable and seemingly eternally youthful, despite having a small broccoli floret in his head where the brain should be), "Who would have thought that someone so very small could be SO lovely?"

I frowned, feeling a little confused.  Fizzy, Ewan's black labrador wife, was certainly a handsome woman (if a little prone to fluctuating corpulence) and, although diminutive for a labrador, could certainly not be described as "small".
"Fizzy?" I queried.
"No! Not Fizzy - Gizzy!"

Well, I couldn't deny that he was correct.  Little Gisèle is exceptionally pretty.  I have yet to see a photograph that has captured her exquisite beauty with even a modicum of accuracy.  It is remarked upon by almost everyone she encounters and, last year, she even won a sweet pink rosette in a dog show for being "Prettiest Bitch" (which we keep carefully hidden whenever Betty comes to stay.  Though she carefully guards it, I believe that I can detect within Betty a certain jealousy over Gisèle's beauty).  Fizzy, however, is OPENLY a jealous woman, immediately apparent were her muddy paw-marks on Giz's back and sides where Fizzy had "brushed past her" a little too vigorously.  But Ewan was quick to confirm that Fizzy had no cause for concern.

"I mean, Gizzy is lovely, but Fizzy is my true-love.  I loves Gizzy as a friend.  She's funny and she makes me laugh." explained Ewan.  "But listen to me!  I's wasting so much time! Jaspey, it's nearly summertime and I has got an ALL NEW business plan!"

With a rapidly sinking heart and the deepest sense of foreboding I recalled how, last year, Ewan, was inspired (by overdosing on a new "home-business" channel on his owner's television) to become a producer of artisan cheeses.  Cheeses made from dogs' milk.  The whole sorry débacle is described in a previous blog post and was thankfully brought to an end when Fizzy got wind of what Ewan was up to and beat him to a pulp until he agreed not to act on his plans.

"Ewan."  I said sternly, "Please assure me that your new business plan has nothing to do with making products from canine bodily fluids."
"What, hahaha, oh right.  No.  Of course not!"
"Good.  Because I'm sure you remember the thorough hiding that Fizzy gave you when she found out what you were planning."
"Ohhh..." said Ewan, wincing and absent-mindedly raised a paw to his cheek where Fizzy had delivered a particularly sharp slap, "I do remember that.  I don't want that again."
"Well, think on." I barked, "So what are you planning this time?"

I don't know why I asked; I ought to have known better.

"Well," yapped Ewan, his eyes shining as he launched into what was clearly a well-rehearsed speech, "On a hot summer day, when you's out for a long walk or a game, what is the one thing you will want? Yes, indeed, a cool refreshing delicious drink!  And everyone everywhere will thank me because I have invented the best one of all:  Ewan's Tasty Doggie-Drink!"
"This wouldn't be a milk-based beverage, would it...?" I asked suspiciously.
"Hahaha!  No, of course not!  It's juice."
"What sort of juice, Ewan?"
"Dog juice!"
"Here's the thing," replied Ewan, lowering his voice to a whisper, "What I has noticed is this: If you pee in a clear bottle, it looks like tasty apple juice!"

Oh no.

"I beg you to tell me that you aren't thinking of selling urine labelled as fruit juice, Ewan..."
"You've guessed it, my very clever friend!" grinned Ewan, with a demented cackle.
"Your own, or is there any clobbering of unsuspecting parties involved in this one?"
"Probably to start with just me.  And, you know, you can get different colours and that.  So if it's nearly clear then it's lemon, if it's darker it's apple and if it's green-"
"Ewan, if your wee is green then I urge you to see a vet as soon as possible.  And I thought you said that this plan had NOTHING to do with bodily fluids?!"
"It doesn't!"
"Urine IS a bodily fluid, you muppet!"
"What?  Oh right, hahaha... Brilliant. Yes.  So anyway, here is the REALLY genius bit of everything.  I gets juice from Fizzy..."
"Good luck with that..."
"...and calls it 'Fizzy Juice' - but it isn't fizzy, it's a still drink!  So it's called Fizzy but it isn't fizzy! Hahahaha..."

I'll be honest with you, dear Reader, I was not impressed.  Ewan was watching me closely, clearly expecting me to collapse with helpless laughter at his mastery of wit.

"What's the matter Jazz?" he queried, "FIZZY - but NOT fizzy!  Don't you get it?"
"Oh, I get it Ewan.  And you will certainly get it if Fizzy hears about this."
Ewan adopted a sulky expression.
"I thinks you is less intelligent now you is dead."  he muttered, as he stalked off in a huff.  I watched him go, but didn't follow him, grateful that he was wandering off to a place where I was not.

After passing the remainder of the morning much more peacefully, watching Gisèle snoozing in the New Teal Megane (not so new these days), we got out and saw Ewan at the edge of the car park talking animatedly with Mac the spaniel in the next-door garden.  Mac was wearing a very forced, fixed smile and his eyes were glazed.  Ewan hadn't noticed this as he chattered away.
", you see, it's Fizzy but not Fizzy..."
"Help me!"croaked Mac out of the corner of his mouth.  Sweet Giz immediately trotted over to Ewan and, before I could stop her, asked him what he was talking about.  As soon as Ewan's attention was off him, Mac leapt up and fled back into his house, kicking the door closed behind him with a heartfelt cry of "Thank G*d!"
Ewan, oblivious to this, was explaining his plan to an increasingly confused Gisèle.  When he'd finished, she shook her pretty head.
"Eurrrrgh!! Ewan, that is gross!  It's disgusting, how could you even think of it?!"
"I wouldn't even drink my OWN pee-pee!  Not even if I was really thirsty!  So why would anyone drink that horrible muck?!"

Ewan looked crestfallen, almost as though he might cry.  The always-gentle and kind Gisèle patted him on the paw and tried to encourage him.
"But look, Ewan, what might be good is if you don't sell it for to drink!"
"Sometimes it happens when you're out for a walk, you know, and you want to leave a scent-marker but you haven't got any pee-pee left in you any more - well, you could use some from the bottle instead!"
It took Ewan several long seconds to process this idea.  Suddenly, his eyes lit up again and he sat down.
"Ohhhh... Ohhhhhh.... OHHHHHHH!" he cried, raising a fore-paw and frantically waving it up and down.  This was a gesture that I had seen before - indicating that Ewan was so overcome with the genius of an idea that he was unable to express himself.  Finally - "That is GENIUS Gizzy! Genius!" he panted.  "I will call it 'Message in a Bottle'  Yes! YES! And there is that song by a singer that my mummy likes, can't remember his name, it's Waspy or something-"
"Sting." I muttered quietly, annoyed that this madness was continuing and glaring at Gisèle, who had sufficient experience of Ewan by now that she really ought to have known better.
"Yes! String!"
Oh, for goodness' sake.
"And he did this song called um... erm... err..."
"Message in a Bottle."
"Yes!  And we can get him to do the adverts and sing his song!  He can even be on the bottles if he wants!"
"I'm sure Sting will view that as the very pinnacle of his career..." I muttered dryly.
"Well, yes!" grinned Ewan, oblivious to my sarcasm.
"But the irrefutable fact remains, Ewan, that - regardless of any involvement by Sting - it would be humans who would buy this product for their dogs.  And, at the end of the day, it's STILL a bottle of rancid old p*ss... No-one will buy this.  Stick the idea in the bin with the dog-cheese plan - and go and get your football."

"Yaaaayyyy!  Football!!"  And with that, Ewan and Gisèle enjoyed a frantic game of football, stepping up the pace even more when Fizzy came out to join in.  And there ended another nightmare encounter with the mind of Ewan.

Next time - Betty returns!  Plus, Peaches the Hellcat reappears - and Gisèle has plans for him; but they are not at all what you might be expecting...

Pip pip!

Monday, 1 April 2013

Monday 1 April 2013

OK - well it is me again.  Gisèle.  Jasper says that I have to write this by my self and he is not going to check it.  He say s that I have been very good and clever in my lessons of writing and reading with him and that he is trusting me to write something good.

But I am scared.  What if I write this and everyone thinks that I am stupid and not as good as Jasper?  I KNOW that people don't love me as well as they loved Jasper.  I write an article for a magazine last month and all they say is that I am stepping into Jasper's paw-steps.  I can't ever be Jasper - I have not got a willie for one thing, but a lady's fou-fou instead.  But actually I am glad about that.  I am glad I have only got a lady's fou-fou - look at what a not-neutered male has got!  I am a busy girl.  I do not have the time to deals with all of that equipment every time I wants to sit or lie down.  Far too much unnecessary business and, I might add, very inconvenient for a busy dog about town.  No.  I am glad I am a girl.  Yes.

Anyway.  Here is the article that was in last month's magazine from me, all about eggs and Easter.  I hope you like it.  If you don't, blame Jasper and not me because of he made me put it here for you to see:

I’ve always enjoyed a tasty egg.  Boiled, scrambled, fried, baked or poached with a bit of watercress on top - it’s a little bit of joy in a shell.  But I’ve often wondered about the intrinsic connection of eggs with Easter.  As far as I can tell, Jesus and his companions were very fond of fish and bread, olives, the odd fig or two, all washed down with some good wine.  But there are few mentions of a particular penchant for all things eggy.  So why is it now virtually impossible to picture Easter without the flash of a gaudily-wrapped egg creeping in there somewhere?  It certainly doesn’t have anything to do with chocolate.

Dipping my toastie-soldier into the rich yolk of history, therefore, I find that the early Mesopotamian Christians (we’re going back to before 410AD here) had a custom of dyeing and decorating eggs at Easter. They were stained red, in memory of the blood of Christ, shed at His crucifixion.

Symbolically, the humble egg also represents life from seeming death.  The outside of the egg looks cold and dead but inside there is new life, which is going to break out (unless unfertilised - but even then the cooked egg within brings life and sustenance to the hungry). The Easter egg is a visible reminder that Jesus will rise from His tomb and bring new life and/or nourishment to all who seek it.

There is an additional legend (make of this what you will) that Mary Magdalene, following the Ascension of Christ, continued doing her utmost to promote the Gospel and found herself having an audience with Caesar.  She told him that Jesus Christ had risen from the dead, whereupon the Roman Emperor pointed to an egg on his table and stated, "Christ has no more risen than that egg is red." After making this statement it is said the egg immediately turned blood red.

In 1610 the Christian Church officially adopted the egg as the symbol of Easter, Pope Paul V proclaiming the following prayer:

Bless, O Lord! we beseech thee, this thy creature of eggs, that it may become a wholesome sustenance to thy faithful servants, eating it in thankfulness to thee on account of the resurrection of the Lord.

I like these stories - infinitely preferable to the cynical attempts by sweet-manufacturers to sell overpriced chocolate simply because it is egg-shaped.  I would rather have a traditional hen’s egg.  Although I’d probably steer clear of any green ones...

Gisèle the Parson Jack Russell Terrier

N.B.  Given the present scandals within the food industry, there is no truth in the rumour that traces of sea-horse have been found in fish-fingers...

Bye-bye until later,

Love, Gisèle x