Here I sit to write again and I am surrounded by my entourage. The inevitable Gem is on my right arm and a flotilla of floofy fluffy canines are milling at my feet. (Hmm, flotilla and milling? Oh well.)
When my grandson was crawling he joined my entourage. My entourage is usually made up of three floofy fluffs and Gem. The little fella was staying with Grandma (me! I know, right?) from the age of six weeks. Night after night, he went to sleep in my arms only to protest the laying down in a cold cot. (I tried warming the sheets while he snoozed on me but he was never fooled.) The floofy entourage watched this with decreasing interest as the nights waned.
My poodle, Miss Daisy Mae Starr (and yes, they do all have names like that), was enamoured of him from the get go. Absolutely besotted, she would stand on arms of armchairs to view him in his cot, wagging and talking all the while. He has taken the dogs attention for granted, never giving them more than their due and seemed to assume that he was one of them.
Wherever I go in the house, my entourage follows. It’s as if they are never quite sure what I might do. They follow in case I do something interesting and they don’t want to miss out. To the computer, check. To the kitchen, double check and hopeful wagging! To my room, check. To the laundry, check. To the toilet, check, check, check. I suspect they think that I will disappear when I go into a room where they are not. Fair enough. The toilet is a bit baffling though. I am often heard to call out in sheer exasperation, “Look you guys, I can go to the toilet by myself!”
When my grandson was finally crawling, he joined the entourage. He would faithfully follow the crowd down the hallway to the toilet, bathroom or laundry. If I had to answer the door, five little bodies came with me. Fortunately he’s never taken up barking though he did startle more than one visitor when bending to pat the menagerie, they noticed a baby in the mix. He didn’t seem to mind.
Now that he’s walking, running and exploring, the dogs are less interested. The cats have always been very tolerant of him, seeming to know that there is much he doesn’t understand. While the dogs generally treated him like a wayward puppy, my senior canine, Mr Wallace Gumble, has always kept his distance. The poodle is enamoured all over again as he is now of the correct height to hold his food just so, which Daisy delicately removes from his fingers. Portable snacks! My grandson always looks up at me with such consternation across his face, ever surprised by this turn of events. As I am an excellent Grandma, I laugh.
We went with the little fella and all the family on the local steam train, Puffing Billy, for his third birthday. He was so excited, he shivered and shook. It’s amazing how many people a cheeky, charming three year old can con into letting him clamber over them. Fortunately we only had the one carriage he could take over.
He still follows me much like my youngest did when she was small. It seems they never know what I might do next.