To the Manor Born

A Guest Post by Henry

As I write this, I am being held captive in a condo, somewhere in California. Of all places. Do not ask me how I came to be here, as I cannot recall. I was but a wee one when I arrived. Though, I dare say, I have frightful memories of the automobile ride here.

It was a terrifying experience. I’m pretty certain that I was blindfolded. Either that, or I was too bewildered to open my eyes. Indeed, I was shaking like a leaf, having never been in a vehicle before. So nervous was I, that I pooped in my trousers twice. Though, at the time, I wasn’t wearing any.

I am Henry, a King Charles Cavalier Spaniel, descended from royalty, and to the manor born. ‘Twas on a sunny day in spring that my life began. The cherry blossoms were in full bloom and sycamore trees swished gently in the breeze. For the first few weeks, all was well with the world. Then, quite suddenly, I was plucked from my mother’s bosom and taken from the only home I’d ever known. A tragedy, I know. I was eight weeks old and barely a lad.

I cannot fathom why this happened, but I imagine it was a cruel joke, along the lines of The Prince and the Pauper. I, of course, being the prince. And now, here I am, trying to make the most of my pauper life, finding out how the other half live–and let me tell you, it’s quite ghastly at times.

Maybe someday I will be able to return to take my rightful place on the throne. On the queen’s lap, of course (though they tell me I’m rather big for a Cavalier and would not be able to fit on her lap). Until then, I shall muddle through in this modest, cluttered home.  I suppose I could do much worse. I try everyday to make the most of things, living with my people. After all, noblesse oblige.

I live with three people. First and foremost, there’s Cook. She prepares all my meals, though I’m peeved that she never checks to see if my food has been poisoned.  Those of noble blood cannot be too careful, you know, which is why I am forced to check my food myself. Each time I devour it, I am sure I am going to croak. But so far, that hasn’t happened.

Cook has a blog, one that is all tangled. I don’t know why she calls it that. I’m hoping one day to have a blog of my own, so I can regale you with stories of my adventures here, including my vain attempts to get the attention of my humans, which isn’t easy when they are watching the telly.

Also, living here is my Lady-in-Waiting. This is humiliating, because kings should not have Ladies-in-Waiting! But I come from a strong ilk, so I take such slights on the chin. In any case, my Lady-in-Waiting is seldom here. She leaves periodically for school, or something to that effect, and stays there for months at a time. I never know when she is going to leave or when she will return. As a captive, I am most often kept in the dark.

Then there is my valet. A strapping, young gentleman, who Cook calls son. I am pleased to say, my valet is kind enough to see to my needs, as I have many. He feeds me on occasion—when Cook has the day off—and escorts me to the park, protecting me from the legions of unruly dogs that want to sniff my backside. It is, no doubt, their way of paying their respects to me.

I rather enjoy taking my constitutional with my valet. For, unlike Cook, he often brings a tennis ball so that we can play fetch. Some might say I’m obsessed with tennis balls, but I’m just having a jolly, good time. Indeed, they are my passion. I can sniff out a tennis ball more than 20 feet away, and I fly off the handle when I do. The ball can be buried in the bushes, caked with soil and other dogs’ drool, yet I can always detect it. Cook has said, many a time, “If a tennis ball ever commits a murder, Henry will find it out.” And she is quite right!

That is all for now. I do hope Cook allows me to post again. Perhaps she will, with your encouragement. In the meantime, if you see my mum, please let her know that I miss her dearly, and that I will always wear the mantle of my royal heritage with pride.  Better yet, please send me a map so I can find my way home.

Until then, cheerio!