“Come And Meet My Grandmother”

Jack Riskit and his wife Holly were my great uncle and aunt John Richard Evans and Holly (née King). Their story is told in my earlier post ‘Holly’.

This morning, my sister Jacqueline related a quite incredible supplement to the tale.

Jacqueline keeps fearsome guard dogs at her home in Boston in Lincolnshire. At the time of her encounter with a complete stranger, perhaps ten years ago, the canines numbered two

Cane Corsos. (Image from Dogster)

and pair of

German Shepherds. (Image from thedailyshep.com)

In the normal course of events these frightening creatures, barking their heads off, would fall over each other to be the first at the gate whenever a stranger approached her home and stables.

On the day in question – about the time I produced the photograph used as today’s header – my sister turned round the corner of her house to witness a gentleman with his unmolested hand over the gate stroking her silent guardians patiently awaiting their turn. Upon enquiry he told her that he had just moved into the area and was a circus performer working with horses. This prompted Jacqueline to mention our great uncle and aunt.

“You must come and meet my grandmother”, was his response. Jacqueline did so. Far from being a wolf, the octogenarian turned out to be a woman with a long memory who described precisely the act featured in my post of 19th October 2013. She had known the performers well. Now, there is a Boston in South Australia where the Riskits may have appeared, but this exchange took place in England’s Boston.

Ian had returned to the fold for dinner this evening. Jacqueline had gone back to Elizabeth’s. Jackie fed us on shoulder of lamb cooked with mint and garlic; crisp roast potatoes and parsnips; firm Brussels sprouts; and crunchy carrots. I finished the Fleurie while Becky and Ian drank a Virtuoso red wine.


  1. There are 36 places around the world called Boston!
    From the US, UK, South Africa to Cuba you know!
    Include Ireland, Sweden, the Philippines and Bolivia for sure!
    Add in Andorra, Jamaica, Colombia, Italy, Peru to the mix.
    And you’d still have 22 more Countries to get your total fix!

  2. Amazing six degrees of separation. I’ve been bitten three times in my life by dogs, one of which was very serious at the time, but I still love them. All the same, I’d be wary to pat a dog, especially two, on their own territory without the owner present. He must have been a dog whisperer.

  3. I would have been very impressed to meet someone who could quieten two territorial dogs on their own property. And I wonder, was the grandmother able to inform your sister as to which bit of the original Holly’s anatomy the wire was attached? I find the different meetings and associations of names and places quite fascinating – life is often full of mysterious serendipities .

  4. The number of connections that appear in unusual and unexpected places really is intriguing. I’ve often thought that if any of us talk to a stranger long enough, the connection will appear. This was a great one!

  5. Wow! A very interesting and wonderful story!
    I adore dogs, but I am very careful around dogs I’ve never met before. I give them respect and space. That man MUST have had a special something that animals could sense/feel and so they trusted him. I have a friend like that. I’ve never seen any dog, or other creature, that didn’t trust him. 🙂
    HUGS and Happy New Year!!! 🙂

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