Sunday, 27 February 2011


A bit off topic (if there even is a topic), but allow me to recount the mayhem that ensued when today I took Plato, my 8 month old Shih-tzu, to buy a bottle of water in my local newsagent.

As we were approaching the newsagent, Plato was on the lead, marching excitedly ahead of me, waggy tail high in the air. He was in a particularly bouncy mood.  

The newsagents I go to has a stall of fruit and veg on the outside.

 Plato loves colour and the site of melons, pears, oranges and bananas immediately rooted him to the spot. This is where things got bad. 

A man walked inside the shop and left his great dane (a very big dog) tied to a large shelf  of fruit. The dog was pretty chilled and found an orange on the floor that it held between its paws like a ball.

 Despite trying to bring up my shih-tzu to have the right values, the sight of the great dane enjoying his orange wrongly imbued Plato with a misplaced sense of ownership towards the fruit and a foolhardy boldness. 

So. Plato tricked me into thinking he was unperturbed and as we walked past the dog he  suddenly my ran towards him barking and purring (like a tiger, not a cat). Understandably the big guy got upset. So he got up, ROAREEEEEEEEED and leapt towards Plato.

As he did this, he pulled the metal stall of fruit away from the wall and it came crashing down on his head. ORANGES, APPLES, GRAPEFRUIT EVERYWHERE. The dog was so alarmed that it bellowed and ran into the middle of the road, with the metal shelves crashing behind him at the end of his lead.

Buses beeped, cars swerved. I closed my eyes as the canine came terrifyingly close to the wheels of a 4x4.

The owner ran out of the shop at the commotion- blinked at the chaos and started screaming after his dog, who at this point had crossed the road and was racing down the street- until the shelves got caught on a lampost and he was forced into a halt.

I looked around me at a scene reminiscent of a Hollywood action movie. A crowd of open mouthed spectators. Cars stopped with the drivers standing in the road staring. Fruit everywhere. A corner shop proprietor who staggered out of the shop and gasped at the damage. And me and my dog, creeping quietly away, unnoticed from the scene of the crime. 

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