Friday, 18 July 2008

A Chance Encounter


The above picture has nothing to do with post but is what I feel like doing now. A few nights of not sleeping well leaves me grumpy and knackered. But I digress.

It's been a busy week, what with sending my novel off to the agent in Ireland - my baby is well and truly on its way so think of me - or rather, it - and cross fingers, please. I feel sick with nerves at the thought of it, so I am trying to focus on Other Things. Like an interview with a cartoonist next week and a free zero balancing session courtesy of the very nice lady I interviewed last week.

One day last week I was walking Moll up near a farm where there is a camp site. Adjacent to this are two fields where I throw her ball so she can race through the stubble and have a good run, so knowing this she ran ahead and stood at the entrance to the field with her head on one side, waiting for me.

As I rounded the corner, I laughed and said, “look at YOU! Just LOOK at you!” (For non dog lovers, I’m afraid this is typical of the kind of conversation a lot of doglovers have. Sad but true.)

Mollie didn’t reply, but a rich, deep voice to my right said, “Who, me?”

I jumped and found myself looking into the widest, most open smile in the blackest face I’ve ever seen. He saw my amazed expression and flung his head back, revealing white teeth with a hint of gold. His face just rang with enjoyment of life. I laughed too – how could I not? And he asked if my dog would bite him if he shook my hand.

“I don’t know,” I said. “Let’s try.”

Mollie might be small but her teeth are very sharp and her jaw is made of steel. I don’t know if he knew that, but he did look rather apprehensive. We looked at Moll who looked up and wagged her tail.

“She’s a good judge of character,” I said.

My new friend exhaled loudly and with evident relief. I asked him where he was from – “Coventry,” he said. My wife and I come down and camp three times a year. We love Cornwall.”

I told him about the private view I’d been to at Morvah, last weekend. I told him how beautiful West Penwith is, and how he should get there.

“We’ll go tomorrow,” he said, with that wide easy smile and we talked some more. About where they’d been, about what I did. “Tell me,” he said, “what do you think makes a relationship work?”

I grinned. I like this kind of conversation. We shared our views and I found that he has remarkably similar tastes to Himself. Though to look at they are somewhat different. For one thing, Himself isn’t into camping.

We laughed and I threw the ball for Moll and he said, “Isn’t this great that we’ve only just met and we’re standing here getting on and having a good time?

“It is,” I said. “It’s a shame that more people don’t do this. Have respect for others and enjoy different company. Life would be much more enjoyable if we did.”

Again that lovely grin. He held out his hand to shake mine once more. “Gabriel Fry,” he said, and clasped my small hand in his comfortable large one. “Nothing to do with chocolate. I hope we meet again. I’ve so enjoyed this meeting.”

“So have I,” I said, and reluctantly said goodbye.

It’s amazing how a chance meeting can engender so much good will. I walked off feeling ten foot tall.

17 comments:

Aoj & The Lurchers said...

See, if that happened around London, you'd think you were dealing with a nutter and run as fast as you could in the opposite direction.

That's why I love Cornwall.

Flowerpot said...

aoj - yuo're quite right. I have to say there are certain people about whom I'd think the same thing - but he felt OK - if you know what i mean!!

Crystal Jigsaw said...

A nice encounter for you, it can be quite similar up here but coming from the town I'm always a little on my guard.

CJ xx

Flowerpot said...

Crystal - I am usually, too, but this felt different. And I'm here to tell teh tale!

rosiero said...

Just like I was saying - if you didn't have the dog, it might have been different.

rosiero said...

And I meant to add.... I wish we could all be more friendly, like that. What a better world it would be.

Mopsa said...

Dogs let you enter a whole world of uninhibited friendliness - it's amazing how it melts starchiness and fear. What a great tale.

Grump said...

I hope you told him about the lovely camp site on top of the hill at Treen. With easy walks to Porthcurno and the Minack Theater. Just joking. What a lovely encounter. This used to happen a lot down Treen way, especially in the summer. We looked after a pottery shop for a summer and met sooooo many lovely people. And yes having a dog does mean you say the most endearing things to mans best friend. I'll send you a pic. of Tilly the wonder dog if you like.
Woof x

Flowerpot said...

rosiero - that's very true. Dogs are a great ice breaker arent they?

Flowerpot said...

R - yes I think it would make the world a much cheerier place.

Mopsa - dogs make all the difference don't they?

Grump - yes please send a picture of Tilly! No we havent got to Treen yet but we will...

ChrisH said...

Sounds very intriguing - but how lovely that you could have such a conversation.

Here's wishing your baby every success.

Just off to read your previous post now which doesn't look so good.

Flowerpot said...

chrish - hope you had a good sail - and the weather was OK for you!

wakeupandsmellthecoffee said...

Since I've had Jake, I've had several such encounters. It restores your faith in the human race, I think, and how wonderful that canines can bring humans together.

Flowerpot said...

WAKEUP - Yes it's as if dogs give us permission to talk to other people. Good for them!

Maggie May said...

I guess if you have a dog with you, you get away with it! If you don't have one, there's a problem!

Flowerpot said...

Maggie - I think you've explained it very well. Thank god for dogs!

Trubes said...

The dawgie in the picture should be a model with legs like that !

Oh how I envy all you dog owners. Sadly we can't have a dog as my husband is desperately allergic to them.
Stangely enough, and thankfully, he's not allergic to our cat Chloe.
This just as well as he' have to go! He he!