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Sunday, June 24, 2012

6: Billy The Dog and Simone The Cat Bother Mrs. Nede

Here's the latest chapter of my novella I'm now calling Life's Funny That Way.
This chapter incorporates a few elements of my life prior to Japan - back to the days of the black and white photograph of myself that offers a brief description of who I am (always a confusing thing to write as I am still trying to figure out just exactly who I am today... I keep changing!).
I was born in London England, in the area of London where this adventure takes place, and while I did indeed have the exact type of dog described in this tale, my dog Tin-Tin (who was named after the beautiful marionette from The Thunderbirds TV show in the 1960s) was a 'she'. Tin-Tin is a Malaysian word meaning 'sweet'. Tin-Tin was a birthday present from my folks when I was 2-years-old. A great and beautiful dog, she was my best friend for 10 years. How could I not recall her image when creating this story? She really didn't like cats. And there really was a Mrs. Goody who used to look after me in London while my parents worked. We lived in a basement flat in her house. I'm sure she has long since passed away. And my cat Sam (who came along about five years after Tin-Tin passed) was an ordinary Tabby-White who hated dogs, ruling over my three Rottweilers! He died a week before my grandfather did while I was in  my second-year in Japan. I am writing out this tale right now in the same room he passed away in. My mom pretty much died 10 feet away on the other side of this room's walls 2-1/2 years after him). To say that this story of reincarnation brings back bittersweet memories, is an understatement. Life's funny that way.

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4 
Chapter 5

Billy The Dog and Simone The Cat Bother Mrs. Nede
chapter vi

Billy and Simone emerged from the blackness that was a whiteness into separate families in the same area at the same time. Neither remembered the ivory tunnel or their past encounters in the future that happened now. All they knew were the rigors of birth as they were expelled once again into the harsh realities of life.
Billy-boy was a blue roan English Cocker Spaniel. That's pretty special if you know anything about dogs. But Billy-boy didn't, so the Author supposes it is rather a silly point to have mentioned. Billy's naturally blue-tinted coat shone splendidly whenever the sun shone down. But that wasn't often. Billy-boy lived in England.
Simone was an ordinary tabby-white cat. Which isn't so special, but being a cat - she didn't know or care about human labels. At least not at this point in her lifelong career...or is that career life-long?
Mr. and Mrs. Nede were barking mad and bonkers to boot. They were out in their backyard trying to absorb some sun into their pale skin cells, even though the star was invisible due to a large gathering of grey clouds. Of course, this is England, Lambeth County, actually - or, to be more precise, Walker Lane in the year 1960. Not that time is so precise anyways. Despite it being late in the summer day, they didn't seem to notice the white mist that was always there sometimes. The Nede's placed great emphasis on privacy. After all, as Mrs. Nede was quite forceful in telling Mr. Nede, "A man's home is his castle."
Simone didn't know that of course, and wouldn't have cared even if she did. Being a cat meant never having to be obedient. And she was very definitely a cat.

Her daily ritual usually involved jumping up on old Mrs. Nede's fence and mewing till she was chased away by the huffing and puffing pasty-faced Mr. Nede. She loved how he always wheezed and choked after running the 20 meters to try and scare her away. For a 2-footer, he was pretty funny.

When she got tired with the 2-footer Nede's she went over to the 2-footer Goody's yard. They had a stupid, floppy-eared Woof-Woof who always barked at her. She knew the dog was always on a chain, so she could pester him to her cold kitty heart's content. 
Life for Billy-boy was the typical dog's life. Wake-up, scratch that itch that was always there, prance around the 2-footers till one of them takes him for walkies-walkies. Then he'd be chained up to his dog house, with a nice bowl of ice cold water, that always became tepid in the afternoon when he needed it the most. His only life's bane, though, was that stupid Meow. She came everyday to annoy the hell out of him.

"Her time will come one day," seethed Billy-boy.
Today was no day special to the people in this story. It was hot and it was cloudy, and a white mist rolled lazily over the ground. However, in the interests of plot development, it should be noted that Billy-boy's chain had developed metal fatigue after the amount of stress put on it.
Simone landed gracefully on the grass. Today it had been more fun than ever. She hadn't seen a 2-footer turn that shade of purple before! Sensing that today would be special, she ambled over with her tail high in the air to tease the Woof-Woof.

Climbing on top of the meter-high fence, she mewed softly at the dog, who was already in a frenzy.
Tugging and pulling at his chain, Billy-boy barked furiously. Turning circles and jumping high in the air, the chain suddenly snapped.
Simone heard the chain snap and froze in shock.

Billy-boy tumbled head-over-heels following the chain’s sudden release – and then froze in shock.

The cat, having better reflexes, recovered first and began running away from the frothing Woof-woof.

Billy-boy hoped the low-white fence and followed musing at how: “Dogs like a little pussy now and then.”

In her panic, Simone headed straight for Mrs. Nede’s yard and scaled the low fence with ease.

Billy-boy followed with an insane appetite for destruction in his eyes.

Simone ran across the Nede’s porch and directly under Mrs. Nede’s feet as she was bringing Mr. Nede his cup of Orange Pekoe tea.

Unfortunately, the Author isn’t allowed to print Mr. Nede’s scalded comments.

Mrs. Nede landed on her backside and fumed in disgust “That horrid dog has just chased that horrid cat up my beautiful apple tree!!”
Simone, in tired desperation, scampered up the gnarled apple tree. She moved quickly out onto a limb and shivered in fright.
Billy-boy barked angrily below the tree – he’d almost caught her that time!
Simone tried to rectify the situation by swatting a large green apple down atop the carnivorous canine. But, being a cat, her aim wasn’t as good as a frog’s tongue. The apple thundered to the ground and rolled a few feet away from Billy’s maniacal body.
Though it had nearly brained him, Billy-boy was not about to let the apple go to waste. Besides being a rare breed of dog, he was a notorious over-eater as all Cocker Spaniels are. He ambled over to munch on the apple, but did not notice that Simone was quietly climbing down the tree.

The apple was delicious! Suddenly, Billy-boy perked his ears up and remembered!
Mrs. Nede came running with her broom at that instant and chased both Simone (who had just hit the grass) and Billy-boy out of her garden.

“And don't come back!” she huffed.
Billy-boy ran after Simone again - this time not in anger, but rather because he had remembered. He remembered!

He shouted after her. Unfortunately, Billy-boy was a dog, so everything he said came out as, “ROWF! Rrrrrr-ROWF-ROWF!”

Simone ran faster! But Billy-boy was quicker! He had almost caught up to her when the last thing either of them would hear in this world screeched its brakes at them and smacked them with a sickening, “THUDdddd!”
Neither had any recollection of the same thing happening to a bird 35 years from now/then.
The Author supposes it’s not important to tell you that the car driven by Mr. Nasta, the Mambo King of Yorkshire, was not damaged, which was of no consolation for Billy-boy and Simone, who were.

As Mr. Nasta shimmied his way out of his Jaguar to survey the carnage, Billy-boy and Simone were already chasing their separate multi-hued light together.

Life’s funny that way.

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