Monday, 9 March 2015
Curiosities and Millie
Striking catkins dangling on a hazel tree are a reassuring sign that spring is on its way. These catkins are all male; watching them dance in the wind is a pretty spectacle all on its own, but knowing that this dance is also a fertility rite, and that the wind is busy pollinating them, gives added meaning to the display.
Squirrels have made good use of the fruits resulting from this annual period of mad procreation. Peering into a hollowed out fence post I found this cache of emptied hazel nut shells. I wonder if squirrels used the hollow for storing their autumn loot or if they came here to crack them open and eat the tasty kernels, leaving the shells behind?
A toothless tree witch watches over it all. Deep eye sockets, a bulbous nose and petrified braids of grey hair complete her picture. A sight to frighten children.
Millie isn’t frightened of anything, not even having her stitches removed. The vet and a nurse got hold of her between them, turned her over forcibly and went to work. Her hind leg trembled a bit but her tail kept thumping the floor. Funny girl.
The lump removed from her groin is a malignant Fibrosarcoma; the good news is that the likelihood of metastases is low and the sarcoma is not particularly invasisve. The vet has removed all of it, including a few millimetres of healthy tissue, which means that she is now probably clear of cancer. I sincerely hope so, both my previous labradors developed terminal cancer. As Millie will most likely be our last dog (famous last words) I hope that the lab report’s final sentence is true: ... "long term prognosis is good”.