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Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Animal welfare: or lack of it. Yesterday, around lunchtime, a hideous noise started. Beloved thought it must be a donkey, but Handsome had seen what was happening; man over at half-built house furiously belabouring the poor dog with a stick thicker than his arm. Handsome yelled at him and man yelled back, but did not resume. Dog so badly injured it could only crawl away. We debated what to do. Too late to do anything by then - animal shelter closed for day. This morning man stopped and told Handsome to mind his own business. Handsome retorts it is his business. Was it his dog? No? Had it bitten him? No. Had it bitten his child? No. Any more such he'll report it to the police. 'It's nothing to do with them.' Oh yes it is - Handsome on sure ground here. He's conferred with police pal who says indeed they would do something if it's reported to them. Impasse. Dog still presumably in bad state. Animals are always treated like shit here. Dogs on chains all day and night, never let out, fed scraps. Not fierce either - though they look large and threatening, they are pussy cats. If you talk to them they seem pathetically pleased not to say grateful for the attention.

Handsome's unson-in-law going on OK. But in state of shock because he could so easily have been dead. One young man who'll take life more seriously from now on. Story now is that he ran out from kebab shop to rescue his cousin who was on ground being kicked by three youths. Two more appeared from nowhere, one or two with knives. He put his arm up to protect his face - arm badly slashed; then got a knife in the back which punctured his lung and only just missed being fatal. Bit of his lung was cut out but the blade is still in there. Cousin last heard of in even worse state - had knife in head which has blown up like football -danger of encephalitis and god knows what damage. Not nice. Gang arrested though. One side effect at least is total reprochement between the Handsomes. Handsome has taken Mrs Handsome's clothes home. She will return when matters sorted out. Meantime she is minding her grandchildren back in Blackburn.

Another murky morning. Yesterday it was cloudy up here most of the day and hazy everywhere else. Today wind is light and fog possibly lifting, tho' still masking hill tops. No sign of sea or islands.

Attic woman's dog is loping around after toe operation complete with collar, and in stand-off with unimpressed marmalade cat. Granny has done power walk round land on new health and exercise regime. What are you doing? asks Beloved. Getting fit says Grannyp, who was not impressed at her puffing up hill yesterday. We'll see.

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