Gladschtul’s text woke me at 3am. We’d done it. Only five of the exotic beasts left on the planet, and only one would now remain in private hands. Mine. I poured a celebratory cognac, Delamain’s exquisite Le Voyage, just right for the moment, and toasted to my long awaited union with the splendid Lithuanian Hocker Hound.
Please don’t confuse the Lithuanian with the far more pedestrian Hungarian Hocker, who not only has had Hocking bred clear out of the line, but suffers as well from an insipid bark and a slight tail rise that I find quite unappealing.
The Lithuanian is a true Hocker and mine is by all accounts one of the most facile and gifted in the august history of the breed. Video footage Gladschtul obtained of a non sanctioned hocking display in the thorny scrub outside Sveksna was breathtaking. We counted three, maybe four dozen quail loogied in one twenty minute span alone!
After touching down in Vilnius we were escorted to a private hangar, where a hulking, yet distinguished looking gentleman named Petkevicius approached me and said something in either Lithuanian or Latvian. I turned to Gladschtul, who’s simply crackerjack with Baltic languages. He whispered: Petkevicius says, “You are a very lucky man!”
Suddenly and with great flourish a thick black curtain was whisked away, revealing the majestic hound. He mounted slowly to all fours, raised up his massive snout, and let fly a raw pitched keening howl and spit right in my eye.