We went camping last weekend. Fortunately, before the Ice Age hit us this weekend. We also met a bitch of note.
Irma and I checked in at The Dell close to Parys shortly before sunset. Nico and Rennie caught up with us about half an hour later and we pitched camp by torchlight. It was not long before we settled down around Nico’s campfire, snacking and sipping on “whatever”.
By the first turn of the meat, we were nonchalantly joined by a sheepdog. Wagter was a part of our party in no time.
A very observant dog, I must say. Not long after Wagter joined our company we noticed he turned his attention from the meat on the fire to a dark spot of our camping area. Chippie, the bushbuck, has arrived. It was clear that Chippie and Wagter were not the best of friends but Wagter tolerated Chippie. Chippie, on the other hand, simply pretended Wagter was not around and started begging for food. So she was fed some chippies. We were saving the meat for ourselves and Wagter. We were not going to turn this herbivore into a carnivore.
Wagter made sure he made friends with Nico – not only was Nico the one feeding the humans all weekend, but also the dog, bushbuck, ostriches, crabs, and fish. The fish loved the bait but would not bite. Wagter slept in front of the tent used by Nico and Rennie.
The next morning when we could see properly in daylight it turned out Wagter actually is Wagterina. She, fortunately, was not too offended by our lack of name-giving capabilities and decided to stay for the remainder of the weekend. She kept an eye on the bushbuck and ostriches. Whenever any of these visitors were getting too close and we would talk loud at them or wave hands in an attempt to get them out of our personal space Wagterina would jump up and chase them away. For the rest of the time, she simply stayed close to us.
Wagterina was struggling when eating the scraps Nico gave to her, mostly swallowing without chewing and he had to make sure he broke it into small pieces for her. Her grey hair also made it clear that she is not a puppy anymore.
I sent a mail to the owners of The Dell last week, thanking them for their hospitality and I also asked them about Wagterina’s real name. Jackie, it is, and she is 14 years old!
So, thank you, Jackie! You are an awesome furry friend, staying with us the whole weekend and protecting us from the “wild beasts”. We wish you many happy and friendly campers!
Will we go back? Yes – and we did go back less than a year later!