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Dreams and Wishes


Rusty Broadspear

In the heat of the lazy, hazy, out of focus, insect loaded mid morning sun, sitting on a bench in a nearly deserted park, I spilled all my troubles, all my wishes, all my dreams.

Sally, a very dear friend, listened without interruption. Occasionally her eyes would widen as if I had totally surprised her, sometimes she would tilt her head like she felt deep sorrow for me but more often than not she would grin in agreement.

I'd finished, nothing more to say, I waited for some sort of response. Sally was in deep thought, (there was a lot to think about), so she mulled it all over for maybe a couple of minutes and eventually replied with about four chuffs, (sort of whispered barks).

Smiling, I patted her head, which in turn switched her tail into fast mode, I had no choice but to cuddle her and thank her.

As for my troubles she'd said, "Look behind you Rusty, how many troubles can you see that you've scrambled over, fought through, leapt over, kicked to one side, ignored and they've gone away."

I thought the latter solution had been my favourite, looking back.

"Dreams and wishes," now she spoke very carefully, deliberately. She was oh so wise, "Dreams are there to be fulfilled. You have many, many more crossroads and junctions ahead of you, just look out for the road sign saying Dream Boulevard, take it, give it your best shot."

"And wishes?," I asked her, with maybe a little too much hope in my voice.

"Now they are so different than dreams. Compared to wishes, dreams are substantial, objective and have a good chance of becoming realistic. Wishes are so much like the breath of a mayfly, here today, gone tomorrow. Now heed, my Master Rusty, wishes were also given to us for a reason. We all have wishes and many of them, the secret is to pick out the strongest wish. A wish that will benefit others instead of or as well as yourself. Then nurture this wish, maybe change it slightly, give it time to grow and mature and eventually this wish will magically turn into a dream. A dream that has stemmed from a wish is a very powerful dream
indeed, one that has every chance of fulfilling itself."

Sally was sitting alert by my side on the bench catching flies and spitting out wasps. She was so content, she passed wind a couple of times, as was her want.

She hadn't said any of the above, for that would be too silly for words and one would have every right to say I was going dog crazy. She said it all telepathically, which was good - keeps it very private and doesn't encourage peculiar stares from anyone who happens to be passing.

I fed her one of my ham sandwiches, which on this sort of occasion she always accepts and eats, purely to be sociable. I know for a fact she doesn't like bread and butter. She swallowed with a forced gulp, looked at me and gave me a wink. I winked back.

Well, time to go. I gave her a quick tour of a few bushes, past numerous signs that read, Dogs Must be on Leads at all Times and Keep off the Grass and No Ball Games and Clean Up after Your Dog. The latter was something I know I should do but could never bring myself to do it. First reason because of the pure yuckiness of it. Second reason because I thought it very demeaning for Sally. I tried it once and she gave me a really filthy look. I suppose, after much thought on the subject, it is a canine way of sending emails. They read each others, look for new ones on early
morning walks, sometimes Sally reads some really interesting emails and some she virtually ignores (canine spam I suppose). Quite often in the evening she'll send new emails of her own.

I realise I spent quite a few words on dog mess, maybe trying to cover my guilt.

A mixture of bewilderment and excitement radiated from Sally because we weren't taking our usual route home. We were out of the park and for maybe an hour we'd been street walking. She took the opportunity to sniff loads of canine strangers, many of which ended up doing the circular canine dance, (I'm sure you know what I

We were walking up a wide tree lined residential avenue, and standing way back from the trees at the end of long driveways were some splendid houses.

One had a signboard at the gateway. Victoria House Hotel for Pampered Pets. My feet crunched the gravel surface, the heat of the sun was noon hot, Sally was panting or laughing at one of her mind jokes, the house didn't seem to get any nearer, until I was at the front door pressing the bell. Sally helped herself to a bowl of water on the front step. Eventually a girl of about 18 years answered the door.

"I have a 12.15 appointment..."

"Ah you must be Sally," she said, looking directly at me.

Sally looked up sharply at the girl, throwing a string of water and saliva over her ankle bracelet. The girl laughed, got onto one knee and stroked Sally, apologising at the same time, she introduced herself as Geraldine the Head Housekeeper. Housekeeper??

I told the Head Housekeeper that Sally's possessions had been forwarded to the hotel earlier in the morning. I confirmed I had booked her room, (room??), for 6 months and that I would be in regular contact.

Occasionally in the past Sally has stayed with friends or relatives and has had a couple of short stays in kennels. It surprised me how relatively easy it was to say goodbye - maybe in light of her advice earlier this morning.

The plane took of on time. I looked down on white clouds that looked safe enough to jump out the plane and land on to with bare feet. Dreams and wishes.

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