Mr. A's Most Providential Boots

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A fun blog of 'soft' philosophy about the life and times of a Westiepoo called Chester. Written as a prelude to a more serious novel raising the question: Who is the most bankrupt: the banker who won't whistle-blow or the chef who loses her livelihood?

When it is Sunday afternoon and the February sky is cloudless, the canal is the must place to go. There I can play with wayfarers and hikers, get in the groove for smell, and run the towpath to the strengthening sunlight. Only this dream of mine might not be at all possible but for Mr. A's most providential boots!

For those who don't already know, my co-master, Mr. A., is the king of my walking. Almost all of my rambling comes under his leadership and direction. He tries very hard to make the scenery of such walks pleasing to my scent by varying my routes, but during rainstorms and the mud fare of winter fields, it is not always attractive to his Dr. Marten shoes. He has a couple of pairs of them: his everyday Charro Brando leather shoes — a full grain, waxy leather that changes appearance with age, creating a distressed look — and a second, Purple Arcadia, high shine shoe for special occasions. Suffice to say, apart from concrete pavements, asphalt paths and gravel tracks, his DMs lack the resilience and robustness to survive saturated land. So much so, that last winter, my walks became restricted to the same pathways around the same park, meeting the same people. Don't get me wrong, it's a pleasant walk, in one of the prettiest parks in England with lovely people, but it does get a trifle monotonous each and every day during the dreary and dark days before the spring equinox. This winter has however been somewhat more enjoyable; all because of a wonder.

You see most dog-walkers in drenched fields rely upon their Wellington Boots to protect their feet from slipping and sliding on the wet, sodden, muddy ground and dirtying their regular footwear and clothes. However, Mr. A doesn't possess a pair of Wellingtons and couldn't afford to buy any. He suffered a catastrophic event two years ago that meant his livelihood disappeared, rendering his purchasing power virtually null and void. But, it just so happened, that when Mr. A was at the local recycling site last autumn, dispensing worn out clothes in a one of those bring bank containers, there was a pair of new, RockFace hiking boots in his size lurking unattended left to be rescued.

Now, ordinarily, it's not a sound idea to retrieve clothes or footwear from a recycling bank (I think of The Big Bang Theory and the episode where the three girls donate clothes but end up stealing them instead and justifying it by doing other humanitarian work). Nevertheless, the RockFace boots were, as if, deliberately left on the lip of the swing lid's jaws in such a way that the previous owners wished to gift them to another visitor to the amenity. Perhaps they were even ashamed and embarrassed to discard such an excellent pair of boots?

"Wow," thought Mr. A to himself, taking their new condition as a miraculous provision for the benefit of yours truly: a timely intervention, if you must, from an unknown benefactor. So the canal walk plus the field trails, plus the disused railway track walk, are all possible without the ruination of his precious Dr. Martens.

I now wag my tail excitedly every time Mr. A's RockFace boots are taken to the front door and gnaw his coat impatiently waiting to be free and dance like a prince in the fields.

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