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Old 06.10.2013, 17:36
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A Few Meanderings About A New Dog

I recently posted that Mrs TD and I got a rescue dog from a tierheim in Colmar. Well, having a bit of an active imagination - and for my own amusement - I've written what i think is the story of how he got to the tierheim. I hope you find it amusing.

Schotty – The Real Story:

Antonio Hidalgo paced in his cell nervously, it wasn't that he was doing a 5-stretch for aggravated sausage robbery – Hell, he'd done porridge before, he could do five easy, no sweat. No, the problem was that the suspect saveloys belonged to “Lucky” The Lab. He repressed a shudder. “Lucky” The Lab, the nastiest bit of pedigree cur he ever had the misfortune to cross paws with.

Yeah, everyone in the pound had heard about “Lucky” The Lab, the undisputed pack leader of the Nord-West Rhein, from Colmar to the Basel border. They say that, once, a pack of German Shepherds tried to muscle in on Lucky's turf; one day they were sniffing around St Louis, barking at the humans; then the very next day? Nothing, nada, gone. No-one could prove anything, but the cat-food company belonging to Lucky's so-called owner did big business that month. And he's good, oh yes he's good is Lucky. He's good at showing clean paws to the world: humans just see “Lucky”, the adorable Chocolate Coloured Labrador family pet, they never see the dog that makes Rottweilers piddle themselves in fear...

Hidalgo paced up-and-down, his guts tying themselves into knots. He had to get out, the screws were unbribable and he couldn't count on any of his fellow old lags to help him out. A right bunch of cell warriors, hobbits, window lickers, scroates and oxygen thieves they were as well. Either they were on Lucky's payroll or they were keeping a low profile, Lucky had snitches everywhere. Even the cool cats in the feline enclosure wouldn't help – despite Hidalgo doing a BIG favour to Blofeld, the white Persian top-cat, a few months ago.

Hidalgo started, locks were being keyed and doors opened on his wing. “This was it”, he thought nervously “I'm toast. Lucky finally got to the Prison Governor”. Hidalgo retreated to the corner of his cell, prepared to go down fighting. His cell door opened and Albert the screw appeared, a real nasty zombie. Hidalgo had bitten the arse out of Albert's trousers the week before when Albert was using a load of stick on a puppy. It got him a sticking and two weeks put on basic – but it was worth it. And now he had at least one Blud. “You've got a visit from some Swiss brief” snarled Albert. Hidalgo wagged his tail, insolently. “Yeah, keep it up, flea-bag” spat Albert, “just wait until I'm back on nights, next month” Albert attached the lead to Hidalgo's collar and dragged him to the visitor centre.

As Hidalgo entered the meeting room in the visitors centre, he realised that it wasn't the usual “do-gooders” like he'd had to deal with before. Alongside Soapy Sam, the chaplain, stood two elegant women. Hidalgo's nostrils twitched as he sussed out the two ladies. “I smell Chanel Grand Extrait, Patek Philippe, Gucci and Prada” snuffled Hidalgo “and hints of Filet Mignon, Sevruga and Dom Perignon Rose” No, these weren't the usual prison do-gooders, he mused, these visitors looked like serious money, serious players – the sort that could either make your life a complete paradise or a complete living hell. Hidalgo sat up straight, wagged his tail and gave the two women his best “I'm an adorable little doggie” number. Soapy Sam spoke “Hidalgo, this is Mrs TD and Mrs VA, They are representing a Swiss client who wants to make you a proposal. I suggest you listen carefully....” Soapy Sam bent down and whispered quietly into Hidalgo's ear “....if you know what's good for you. You're getting this chance because of what you did for that puppy – don't muck it up”. The chaplain straightened up and left the room without another word.

Hidalgo wuffed and wagged his tail even faster. The woman identified as Mrs VA spoke: “let's cut the BS and get to the bottom line. My client, let's call him Train Doctor, needs a trusty companion, one that is faithful and will execute his duties perfectly”, she sighed, “for some reason his psychological profiling analyses of all the inmates here flagged you as the best candidate, God knows why.” Mrs VA opened her briefcase and pulled out some papers and quickly scanned through them “in exchange for providing loyal and faithful service you'll get a new name – Schotty – a new nationality and a secure home in Switzerland” Hidalgo's tailed wagged even faster “this could be it” he thought excitedly “my ticket out of the slammer and away from Lucky the Lab's clutches” The elegant woman identified as Mrs TD then spoke for the first time. “our client, known as The Train Doctor or the fat Italian cook, expects only the very best.” Hidalgo gave Mrs TD his classiest “I'm a wonderful doggie” number – the one that had melted human hearts from Colmar to Hegenheim and looked at her expectantly: tongue lolling from the corner of his mouth, tail wagging nineteen-to-the-dozen. “But I must warn you” Mrs TD continued “you'll have to pass an audition...” she paused and added, darkly, “we know about the suspect saveloys and a certain chocolate brown Labrador.... failure is not an option”.

TO BE CONTINUED...

Last edited by TrainDoctor; 06.10.2013 at 17:45. Reason: Spelling, wordage
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Old 06.10.2013, 17:38
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Re: A Few Meanderings About A New Dog

Schotty – The Real Story:

PART II

Mrs VA continued: “if you agree to this audition, bark twice and make a pawprint, here”, indicating a sheaf of paper. Hidalgo wuffed twice and placed his paw on the inkpad and then on the paper. Normally, Hidalgo didn't bother to read what he pawed as he usually intended to be long gone before the paperwork had gone through, but this time something made him look carefully at the papers. The document was impressive: heavy vellum, wax seals, text in 4 languages, this looked expensive, Hidalgo sniffed the document, it smelt expensive and when things got this expensive, things got hairy...

Mrs VA went on, “we have made arrangements for you, You'll be off basic today and we're moving you to the medical wing. You'll get a complete check up and you will be given better meals in preparation for next Saturday.” Hidalgo shivered and whined, the medical wing was where the warder Albert usually worked, a cushy number for someone who was both a sadistic zombie and a complete plonk of a FLUB. Mrs TD noted Hidalgo's unease and said, in a flat neutral voice that scared Hidalgo more than any of Lucky's threats, “We noted your little difficulty with the warder Albert. We want the best out of you next week, so we have removed this inconvenience to your performance.” And without further formalities, Mrs VA and Mrs TD turned and left the room.
________

Later...
________

Hidalgo awoke with a start, disturbed by the hacking cough coming from the end of the medical ward. “Stanley”, hissed Hidalgo, “are you all right mate? Do you want me to call the matron?” “Don't bother” wheezed the elderly Beagle, “it's just me emphysema, it'll pass...” Stanley coughed hard and expectorated, “It's me own fault for being an 80-a-day dog. Imperials full-strength they were, and a good smoke too...” Stanley's voice tailed off as he dimly remembered youthful days. Silence returned to the ward and the two dogs curled up and started to doze.

After a few minutes Stanley spoke again: “listen up, son. I'm not much use nowadays, but I keep me ears open and a little birdie tells me you are in a big nob's very good books and I mean a very big nob”. Hidalgo's ears pricked up, when you're doing porridge it always pays to have powerful friends. “How big a nob”, asked Hidalgo, “bigger than Alsatian Rex, the Boneo-snout King?”
Bigger!
Bigger than the Governor?
Oh, MUCH bigger!
Hidalgo's widened in awe, “how flamin' big then?
Stanley coughed, “let's say he drives a 1956 Bentley with CD plates and doesn't have to think about the cost of a T-Bone when he fancies one, if you catch my drift. And when he asks a favour of you, it is on the express understanding that favour gets done. Otherwise he takes it as a personal insult, and sends round one of his “trusted advisors” to have a quiet word....”
Blimey
Stanley's ears twitched in silent laughter, “oh, yeah, and I forgot to mention, he has a young Border Collie puppy he absolutely adores, used to belong to his late wife. A Border Collie puppy who lost his ID tags and ended up here, facing a sticking by a right nasty bastard....
You mean the pup that I helped?....” Hidalgo yelped in surprise.
Stanley half-laughed, half-coughed, “you got it son, see what you get for being nice, heh, heh, heh.” Hidalgo was at a loss for a reply as Stanley's wheezy laughter said more than words ever could...

TO BE CONTINUED
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Old 06.10.2013, 17:42
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Re: A Few Meanderings About A New Dog

Schotty – The Real Story:

PART III

Hidalgo's body language was the very picture of misery; his body hunched, his tail held tucked between his rear legs and his ears flattened back on his skull... Hidalgo sat back on his haunches and started howling: Stanley, the elderly Beagle, had died during the night and now the humans were cremating his body.

Stanley, by no means a “top-dog”, was a real Diamond Geezer. Everyone's mate and nobody's patsy: reliable, solid, trustworthy Stanley. He may have not cornered the snout market like Alsatian Rex, or inspired fear like Lucky The Labrador, but Stanley was rich in respect. Even dogs like “Mad Frankie”, the South African Boerboel who laid into anything on two legs or four, had respect for Stanley...

Hidalgo continued his howl and one-by-one, all the other dogs in the tierheim joined in. And for one memorable minute the entire inmate population was united in respect for their “diamond geezer”. As the howling died down, Hidalgo recalled one of the last talks he had with Stanley before Stanley was taken to the intensive care station...
______________

You got a great chance with this Train Doctor bloke, son, don't blow it” said Stanley. He went on; “I know what you're planning, boy, you get nice, you get out and you then get 'lost'” Stanley coughed and continued “don't even begin to think about it. I've heard of this Train Doctor, you really - and I mean really - don't want to mess him around...
What? 'hard” is he?” Hidalgo scoffed “'hard' doesn't frighten me
Stanley coughed and wheezed on; “no, he's not 'hard', he's worse than 'hard', he's...
Oh, yeah”, Hidalgo broke in “he's worse than 'hard', right”. Hidalgo snickered.
Shut your gob for once and listen”, Stanley snapped angrily, “there are things worse than 'hard', he's a medical research scientist...
So?” Hidalgo wuffed.
So? So?” Stanley shook his head in amazement, “you just don't get it, do you? If he, as a senior medical research scientist, decides that your euthanasia serves the public good, he'll order the procedure without even blinking and you're a dead dog walking. And not one human will say otherwise. Why else do you think that Lucky The Labrador never expanded into Switzerland?”
Oh sh1t” Hidalgo moaned “what have I got myself into.... that Mrs TD lady said that failure is not an option and now I know why”, Hidalgo shivered and whined, “I'm a dead dog, I'm toast”.
Stanley coughed and wheezedly eased himself into a more comfortable position. “Nah, you're not toast son, at least not yet - if you do it right. Listen to me, do what I say and you'll be OK
What do you mean Stan?” asked Hidalgo
You go into this whole heartedly”, barked Stanley “keep to the straight and narrow and become the Train Doctor's faithful companion and not only won't you be toast, you'll have a life most dogs can only dream of
OK” said Hidalgo “I can do that, easy. But why are you telling me this? How do you know what will happen?
Stanley's eyes teared up. “Many, many years ago when I was a young dog, full of myself, the Train Doctor visited the kennels, he wanted to take me with him, give me a home, but like the idiot I was, I bit his hand as he tried to feed me...” Hidalgo stared, amazed, good old Stanley biting the hand that fed him! “What happened next?” asked Hidalgo. “Nothing”, replied Stanley with a lump in his throat “he just moved on to the next cage and took my best mate, Harry, instead”. Stanley gave a heavy sigh, “Harry kept in touch through the evening howl, did very alright for himself did Harry....” Stanley shook himself, coughed and then stared Hidalgo in the eyes. “You get yourself sorted with the Train Doctor, stay with him, be a good dog to him, don't be an idiot like me...” Stanley turned and retreated to the corner of the room where he curled up tight and said no more.
______________

Saturday morning dawned cold, clear and sunny. “This is it”, thought Hidalgo, “judgement day”. He knew he could be a good dog, no - a great dog, if he could grab the chance, pass the audition and be welcomed by the Train Doctor.


TO BE CONTINUED
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Old 07.10.2013, 13:48
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Re: A Few Meanderings About A New Dog



(Schotty has got his paws firmly wrapped around your heart, doesn't he? )

Eagerly awaiting the next installment...
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Old 29.07.2015, 13:42
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Re: A Few Meanderings About A New Dog

Schotty – The Real Story:
PART IVa

As Hidalgo paced up and down his kennel, newly manicured paws clicking on the hard floor, he reflected on the strange week he’d had...

On Monday, one of the screws from the feline wing dropped off a small box at the infirmary. Curious as to who might have sent him something, and what that something could be, Hidalgo carefully opened the parcel. To his immense surprise, there was a bloody mouse’s tail and a note, which read: Tanquam ex ungue leonem! Acta est fibula; plaudite.* B. “What the hell is that all about”, thought Hidalgo, certain only that the note came from the top cat in the Feline enclosure: Blofeld.

That Tuesday, was another strange day by Hidalgo’s reckoning. As he was having breakfast he overheard two warders, Fat Harry and Scottish Jock, talking as they had a crafty fag under his window.
You know that nasty bastard, Albert?” asked Fat Harry, “well he was killed, yesterday
No? Really? What happened?” replied Scottish Jock.
“Well, you know how tight fisted he was”? Scottish Jock grunted assent.
Well, the cheap rope he was using to lift the car engine he was fixing, well it snapped. And splat, one ex-Albert” Fat Harry laughed.
Looks like an accident”, continued the warder “the plod said that the rope had been gnawed badly by mice, so it wasn’t strong enough to hold the engine’s weight”,
Hold on a minute”, ventured Scottish Jock, “didn’t he get a cat from the cat enclosure here for that mouse infestation in his garage”?
Yeah, he took Ms Polly, champion mouser she was”. Fat Harry took one last drag on his ciggie and stubbed it out, “funny thing though, the plod couldn’t find her. Just a few tailless mice”.
I don’t blame her for bu99ering off” Scottish Jock ground out his fag-end, “You know how he was, the evil sod. I’d have done the same. Still it couldn’t have happened to a nicer bloke”.
As Fat Harry and Scottish Jock walked off, Hidalgo wuffed to himself in amazement as the meaning of his strange present became clear. Blofeld had certainly repaid his debt. What was it Blofeld once said? “revenge is a dish best served cold”. Hidalgo shuddered and thanked Anubis he was in Blofeld’s good books.

Wednesday, Hidalgo reflected, gave him one hell of a big surprise. As Hidalgo was relaxing in his basket, Lucky the Lab’s messenger boy turned up. A large Afghan Hound everyone called “Plank”.
Hidalgo looked at the Afghan Hound, flanked by two Argentine Dogos. “Hired muscle”, he thought contemptuously and dismissed them from consideration. He turned his attention to the long haired dog.
What do you want, Plank?” Hidalgo asked, warily.
M’name’s Taži Spay”, the hound placidly replied without rancour, “I’ve got a message for you from Lucky”.
Hidalgo eyed the Afghan dog, Plank might well be as thick as the proverbial, but he was a reliable messenger.
Go on” he wuffed.
The Afghan furrowed his brow, concentrating: “Lucky would like to say that the business with the saveloys was a de-plor-able mis-app-pre-hension and he...” The Afghan Hound paused, “and he’s giving you this small gift of a kilo of prime sausages to show his boners fido
Hidalgo smiled inwardly, “I think you mean Bona Fides
Yeah, I meant Bona Fide” Plank continued, looking puzzled, “What’s a Bona Fide?
Hidalgo couldn’t resist: “Like a regular bone, but meatier
Oh!” Plank gave a baffled shrug.

As Plank and the two goons ambled away, Hidalgo whistled inwardly, Lucky cut no-one, but no-one, any slack and for him to back off, well this iL Dottore bloke must be a really serious player. A sudden wave of panic enveloped him, what if he didn’t make the grade? What if he failed the audition? Whining softly to himself, Hidalgo turned around and around in his basket, trying to get comfortable.

(*We know the lion by his claw! The play has been performed; applaud!)

To Be Continued...
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