George and Meg as puppies
For the last ten years I have always had a diminutive co pilot.
For ever since her arrival at the cottage, Meg has always insisted that she sits next to me when we are out in the car. She has never left my side since.
The other dogs and even Chris have all bowed to her superiority when it came to her passenger position, and today, even in her weakened state, she insisted that she assumed her normal driving seat as we drove up to the vet's surgery on her final journey.
I cried quietly for all seventeen miles of the trip and the receptionist kindly ignored my blotchy face when we entered and informed me that the vet was running a " good few minutes late today" She asked us to take a seat, but I couldn't bear the wait in the impersonal, aseptic surroundings,
So I told the girl that we would just " pop out for a moment" and " would be back in ten minutes or so"....I lifted Meg back into her passenger seat, where she sat in her usual position. Back straight, head gently placed to one side facing me and off we went.
Even today, as she had always done, she watched my every move through tired brown eyes and as she did so, I rested my left hand gently around her face....
And for one final time, in a knackered old Berlingo full of egg boxes and discarded scotch egg wrappers....we drove around the country roads of North Wales together.