That year went by quickly. It seems like yesterday I was walking up those stairs to the Our Special Friends office with my mum and dad, Jonathan and Celia. I had my housemate Digby with me and of course he managed to disgrace himself and embarrass us all by refusing to climb the stairs. I pretended I wasn’t with him, although secretly I felt for him really, as he was only a baby then.
Mum and Dad stayed in a room whilst I was taken off by this lovely lady who talked to me, stroked me and took me for a short walk. She was really nice, especially as she gave me some treats. We then had our photo taken, without the baby. Apparently he had disgraced himself even more by leaving his little wet messages everywhere.
It wasn’t long after this that my mum took me, with another lady called Christine, for a ride in the car to a place just the other side of Bury St Edmunds. I was looking really smart wearing my bright orange neckerchief with the ‘Our Special Friends’ logo on it. We arrived at a bungalow on top of a hill and all went in to meet the lady who lived there. She was quite old and didn’t walk very well, but she was really nice and gave me lots of cuddles, which I always enjoy. She also gave me a biscuit, which is a great bonus. After that visit I started going there regularly, sometimes with my mum and sometimes with my dad.
A little later on in the year, I was taken to another place to meet another lady, who was even older than the one I was already seeing. This new lady was quite frail so I was very gentle with her. She had a sort of support thing on because she had broken her wrist, so I sat next to her and licked her hand to make it feel better. After that first meeting I went each week with mum and dad to take this lady out for a walk. Dad pushed her in a wheelchair whilst mum held me whilst I walked alongside. When we got into Abbey Gardens it was great fun, because there were lots of squirrels around, which I got very excited about. Mum wouldn’t let me off the lead to go and chase them, but I made everyone laugh.