Puppies in Africa


 Apologies for the slight pause in posting. We've been upping sticks, moving to Zimbabwe and finding our feet on a chicken farm. Still, we're here and we've settled in but the journey was quite a story. 

N writes; 

“If you could do this for me I will give you both a kiss on the mouth”
“What kind of puppies are they, Ezra?”
“I’ll leave that as a surprise”

I (a junior doctor) and Georgina (a food stylist) were less than twenty-four hours into our year in Zimbabwe and had already been coaxed into transporting two, 6 week old puppies of unknown breed or size, the 450km from Harare to Bulawayo. 

We arrived at the house in Harare and I piped into the intercom at the gate “Hi it’s Nick and Georgina here to pick up some puppies for...”  I was cut short as a white Zimbabwean voice interjected “Yup, that’s fine. Come on through but stay in the car, just stay in the car!”

Few things are certain in Zimbabwe but one undeniable truth was that Ezra had a penchant for big dogs and was already the proud owner of two, enormous Boerbull-Rottweiler cross. This fact combined with the shot across our boughs (and, frankly, my bowels) via the speaker lead us to the conclusion that potential death lead ahead, not just for us but also our little Kia Picanto which was sure to be dwarfed by the monsters within.

The gates opened and the barking began. It grew louder and louder and louder still and yet we still couldn’t see the beast. The reason for this was that all the noise was coming from a rather average-sized (but nonetheless spirited) miniature dachshund that was swiftly joined another (presumably it’s mate and the mother of the puppies).

Surprised by Ezra’s change of heart and feeling slightly sheepish for our own fear we stepped out of the car with calming words of “Hello doggy.  How are you? Yes yes  yes. You’re a good doggy aren’t you!”

Then the ground began to shake. Mummy and Daddy were charging across the lawn and didn’t look like they were a) particularly pleased to see us and b) likely to be amenable to the kind of canine niceties we had been purring at the dachshunds.

I (showing distinctly less resolve than Georgina) started pawing feverishly and the car door which suddenly seemed quite complicated to operate but nevertheless managed to dive into the air-conditioned safety of the hire car. Soon after I was face to face with the growling jaws of two, enormous Boerbulls.

Few things are certain in Zimbabwe but one undeniable truth was that Ezra had a penchant for big dogs.

After a slightly emotional/terrifying goodbye from Mummy dog in particular we left Harare and headed south with two, utterly adorable Boerbull puppies. Seven hours later after three water stops, two in-car defaecations and one change of clothes for Georgina post-puppy travel sickness, we arrived in Bulawayo.

Our African adventure had begun and had successfully avoided becoming a dog’s dinner.