We drove through pleasant countryside for about twenty minutes on roads that became more and more deserted and potholed. The last of these was a steep and narrow winding lane. After a very jerky ride we arrived at his hacienda.
I saw before me a dilapidated cottage, an ancient mobile home, a chalet, a nearly finished bungalow and 2 greyhounds in the bottom field. Around the buildings were piles of wood, stones, plaster and general detritus. The cottage was used as a kennel to house another eight greyhounds; the mobile home to keep the dog meat in and the chalet was where he slept.
The woman he had been living with slept in the bungalow he said and he always slept in the chalet. She was gone but still he preferred to sleep there and I knew why. First there were no animals in it and secondly it smelled pleasant because it was timber clad and there was a woody aroma.
He brought me into the kitchen of the bungalow and introduced me to the cat and budgie and made me a cup of tea. There was one of those long lasting lavender candles burning on the kitchen table which he later confessed was to hide the smell of the cat. In the sitting room there was a fish tank containing one sad, hardly visible fish.
Before we arrived he told me that we were going out again to make a delivery. Apparently he has a knacker’s licence which entitles him to buy meat in large quantities to feed the greyhounds and he sells this on to other dog trainers. He left me in the kitchen as he went to feed his dogs and load up the van with the meat.
When I got into the van the smell from the ‘delivery’ wafted towards me and I was nearly sick. Of course he doesn’t smell it anymore he is so used to it. We finally arrived and offloaded the meat and he said he was taking me to a hotel for a meal. How in the name of Jehovah did he think I was going to walk into a hotel with him in that state? He had just unloaded ten bags of offal or whatever it was. As we pulled into a car park I saw a small café and said that I could prefer to go there.
The meal over we set off again ……………