Rory Stewart was offered a large dog who seemed to have a few health and other ‘issues’.  I like that his decision to take the dog seems to have been triggered by the animal’s feeble attempt at a tail-wag and a tiny signal of friendliness. I also like that ten minutes after accompanying his new master on his great Afghan hike, Babur decides to go no further. 

The relationship between the man and the dog is a delightful element of this charming travel account.  

‘I couldn’t decide whether he was very depressed or very old or both.  He looked over his shoulder and saw me. The stump of his tail moved slightly and he took a slow step towards me.  I decided to take him back with me to Scotland … Half an hour later, having given some money to the villagers, I left with the dog.  I called him Babur, which means tiger … After ten minutes’ walk, Babur met the cold wind on the crest, lay down and wouldn’t move.’ 

 

Source: Rory Stewart, The Places in Between (London: Picador, 2014), p. 153-54

Photo credit: ArmyAmber at pixabay

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