Move over Mr. Darcy, I have a new love in my life! He’s a very handsome chap and, just like Darcy, looks rather dapper in his black and white outfit. He also has a cold wet snuffly nose and four enormous paws, which I’m fairly certain Fitzwilliam Darcy didn’t possess.
Some weeks ago we took delivery of our very first dog, a Cocker spaniel puppy called Cublington Lord Nogman (get you Darcy – you were just a plain Mister!). I have to confess, though, that our aristocratic Lord Cublington is also known as Bertie … or Ratbag or The Beast, depending on what he’s got up to!
He shares some other characteristics with my beloved Mr. Darcy – a fine appreciation of the female of the species, a rather elegant manner (with a long nose he sticks up in the air!) and a tendency not to kow-tow to those considered beneath him. However, I’m pretty sure Darcy never rolled in cow pats, stuck his head up ladies’ skirts or weed on the rug … or maybe that was in the sequel to Pride and Prejudice that Jane Austen never got around to writing!
Bertie also displays a fine sense of impish humour: untying my shoelaces just as I’ve knotted them in preparation for a walk, stealing my slippers just as I’m about to put them on and putting a great big paw on the keyboard, causing some very interesting spelling mistakes. Perhaps then, he has more in common with my other Austen hero, Mr. Tilney?
Bertie’s all time favourite treat is a really good tummy rub and I expect Messrs Darcy and Tilney weren’t averse to those either!
There is one problem; I may never have the time to write ever again! Trying to work while Bertie the Beast patrols the garden, I have to continually break off to rescue him from bees, stop him terrorising the chickens next door and digging holes in our now not very pristine lawn. I can’t imagine Jilly Cooper ever having this problem!