An early morning walk on the Étang de Leucate
Each morning follows the same pattern. I climb out of bed early, make a coffee, try very hard not to wake Cynthia, and try even harder not to wake ever-energetic Abbie. I need to focus on work. I need to find a way of generating more of an income. We rely on Cynthia’s pension too much. Cynthia doesn’t mind. I do. I’m supposed to be the hunter-gatherer, the provider. I’m not.
So I take my MacBook and my coffee, unfold my Lavolta bed table, climb onto the Hymer’s fixed rear double bed. I tether the laptop to my iPhone 7 Plus, sip my coffee and compose my thoughts. I’m focused and ready to work.
That’s when I hear the beast awaken.
I feel the vibration as it stirs from a deep and dreamless sleep. I hear the slap of elephantine ears being shaken, and then a thud as sixty-five pounds of quivering muscle lands on the Hymer’s double-skinned floor. Abbie’s awake. She’s jumped down from her nighttime blanketed couch, and she’s heading my way.
I feel the thin concertina bedroom partition quiver as a hesitant nose pokes through. It’s soon followed by a long and powerful body. Abbie stands on her hind legs, places her front paws on the edge of our bed, and stares at me. She stares until she wins. I close my MacBook, climb off the bed, and unhook her lead from its wall-mounted catch. What can a man do? How can you resist this look?