My early start.

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It was the early 50’s. London was slowly recovering from the war, but like many other mums mine needed to work. If there were nurseries and childcare centers we didn’t seem to know of them. Instead my mother made hundreds of gathered swimsuits at home on her Singer sewing machine. My nursemaid? Not a movie ploy. It was a fluffy mongrel called Dusty, loosely resembling an old English sheep dog.
He would watch over me wherever I went, ready to lick my bumps and scratches or run barking for my mum if he felt I was in danger. Later were added a cat and a rabbit ( see “How a rabbit saved my life”). We all played and got on well together. In fact I was so well integrated into my animal society of friends that as a small child I still remember my dismay on hearing that I would grow up to be a woman not a horse as I’d hoped. (Sounds crazy but true).
I seemed to have an affinity with animals, even the most standoffish would come for an ear rub or tummy tickle. As I grew older and went to school my interests varied, I made new human friends,but my liking for animal company has never changed. Though I cannot have pets where I live my visits to my daughter’s houses never fail to find their dogs noses perminantly positioned on my lap, a process of mutual enjoyment.

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