It can be very frustrating as a writer to have a story turned down because it’s too unrealistic or unbelievable when you have written about something that really happened.
But they say truth is stranger than fiction.
A few weeks ago I wrote a story after an extraordinary and rather magical encounter. I sent it off thinking it didn’t have a chance, but it was accepted very quickly. I can’t wait for that story to come out as it is very special to me.
But in the last week, two more inexplicable things have happened. One of them I may try to turn into a story, but it really was so implausible I don’t have much hope. If I don’t get anywhere with it, I will have to tell it here because it really needs to be told.
The other one is more of a well fancy that sort of thing.
To keep Dusty from charging about on the marshes, I give him a tennis ball to carry. It means he’s not upsetting the birds and I’m not worrying that he’s going to hurt himself or go too far and get lost.
But what he does want is for me to throw it in the water. He jumps in after it and drops it as soon as he's back on dry land, sitting down waiting for me to throw it in again. He's got the fetch and drop thing; he just hasn't got the bringing it back part just yet.
You can see the ball in the first picture; in the other two, it is just out of shot, but that is what he's staring so intently at.
A couple of weeks ago, another dog pinched Dusty’s Wilson tennis ball and ran off with it, so the lady insisted on giving Dusty her dog’s Slazenger ball in exchange.
Then yesterday we were out quite a way along the beach when a friendly border collie came over to say hello. Beautiful dog which put me in mind of Black Bob. Long story short, Dusty did his usual rolling about on his back waving his legs in the air and the collie ended up taking the Slazenger ball. Luckily I carry a spare!
On our way back along the beach, we met a friendly little dog proudly carrying a tennis ball he'd found. I hadn't the heart to say it was Dusty's, besides he was now happily carrying his spare.
Last night we went for a walk round the field, but didn’t go down onto the beach.
After a ball game and a mooch round, I put his two tennis balls away and we returned to the car where Dusty picked up a tennis ball. I looked around. No one about that it might belong to and I had both tennis balls we’d brought along. It’s a Wilson tennis ball. I know there are a lot of Wilson tennis balls about, but I like to think it’s the one he swapped a couple of weeks ago.
It’s been a lovely week hasn’t it. I took this photo of Walton-on-the-Naze on a particularly calm day (one of my grandchildren says it looks like a crocodile). You can see the Naze (Hanoverian) Tower. Interesting place is Walton with a pier, nature reserve and abundance of fossils. I used to cycle over there when I was a teenager to go on the pier!
Between here and there is Hamford Water where Arthur Ransome’s Secret Water is set. There is a seal colony where some of the seals are rusty coloured from the iron oxide in the mud - you can see a photo here.
And Walton-on-the-Naze was mentioned in an episode of Blackadder Goes Forth we watched last night.
Life is one long series of coincidences isn’t it?