Where is this year going to? I have no idea. I thought life would slow down once I was out here, but no, it has not. Last week was another busy one, and little done in the garden on account of torrential rain on Thursday. It was another kind of busy. Work and deliveries and writing and trying to find some time in between all of this to raise awareness of a local news story that is having a direct impact on a part of my life.
Last week, the prosecutor in Angoulême called on Nadine, the refuge director, to go in and give an opinion on a black market puppy farm they were investigating. Nadine left with 30 dogs, as many as the refuge could take, leaving 120 dogs behind. Luckily, the 30 Million d’Amis association, among others, stepped in, but it still has put enormous pressure on the refuge. At 200 dogs already, full capacity, and dogs being brought in all the time, it becomes an impossibility to take more. If more are taken, various authorities can place pressure on the refuge to euthanise animals. Euthanising 30 otherwise healthy animals for no reason at all other than overcrowding as a direct result of humankind trying to make money off puppies is just disgusting to me. I dare not even pass comment on the condition of the mums brought in with their pups. It makes me hurt in my heart.
So I spent my in-between classes hours on Saturday promoting the story on Facebook and any other social media sites I could, hoping to draw attention to this and relieve a little pressure on the refuge by homing a few of the dogs. It’s working, a little bit. Two potential homes, two foster families and one certain adoption. That’s a small step in the right direction, though not enough. I wish it could be more. I wish I could go tomorrow and there would be no dogs. I wish there would be no need for refuges and animal programmes and Paul O’Grady getting sad-eyed about boxers and dogs homes. I wish that everyone felt the same as I do, that we are caretakers on this planet whose job is to curate the planet and look after it, not plunder it on some mission to make as much out of it as we can and sod the consequences. I wish whatever selfish button people have in them was something we could switch off. But it is a sad fact of the situation that my Facebook post about this story gained fewer comments than a thread about iced gem biscuits. The iced gem biscuits thread just ran and ran. I can understand why my fellow animal-loving ladies sometimes blow a gasket and people call them the Animal Mafia. I felt like blowing a gasket as well. Guess I am Animal Mafia too.
I firmly believe you should have a licence to have a dog, that you should pass a test. You have to do so in order to drive. I think you should have to pass a test to have a child, too, but that is another matter.
Anyway, today was more restful, thanks to a lovely lady who organised a spa morning at her house. I had my unruly eyebrows beaten into shape and got to see my gorgeous lady friends for a few hours. It is never enough time with them. They restore my faith in humanity. They share my animal outrage. They share my sense of humour. They make me laugh endlessly. And whenever I have needed them, they have been there. It certainly gave me a bit of a boost to the week’s beginning, especially as I am lurgy-fied and I sprained my wrist and hand on Friday (not badly, but it was sore and claw-like for a couple of days and has now given way to twinges) so I needed a little bit of cake and coffee, waxing and chat. Tomorrow through to Friday are busy, busy days. On Friday, I am helping at a food drive for the refuge. Lord knows, they need all the support they can get right now. Luckily, the end of term is in sight, although somebody asked me about crash courses today and I felt like saying ‘Give me a break!!’ as I am very much looking forward to five days where I do not move from my house and garden. As you can see from the photo, things are growing like crazy!