### Two and Two Make Five

This is not bad a lesson in maths, this is about getting
teamwork. Do this successfully and you'll create something
where the value of the whole is greater than the sum of the
parts. It's a true story that will show you exactly how to
make two and two add up to five, or more.

At around 7 p.m. on May 3, 2001, I was taking my dog, Holly,
she's part Rottweiller, part dog (sorry, I mean Shepherd),
for her evening constitutional along the local lane.

We were almost home, not 50 yards from the bridge at the
end of my driveway, when we heard a squeak coming from the
undergrowth. It's not unusual for the lizards to squeak.
Sometimes, when I whistle the cats, the lizards answer me
back. The first time, I nearly jumped out of my skin!

"Who's there?"

The squeak resounded again. This time, however, both dog and
I cocked an ear each and glanced at each other askance. Now,
I have no idea what she was thinking, but I suspect, much
the same as me as she dragged me off in the direction of the
sound. "That ain't no lizard!"

Down ditch and up bank, we caught our first glimpse of the
owner of the voice. A contender for the title of World's
Smallest Kitten and, we were just in time to see it scurry
back up to huddle with two better qualified entrants.

All alone, middle of nowhere. Oh bother! Now what do we do?

Well, to cut a long story short, I decided they were far too
young to be out on their own and went and collected them. I
took a cardboard box and if it had been only a shoe box, so
small they were, I could have lost all three of them in it.

Brought the box home and, looking at the comparative sizes
of half ounce furballs to 55 lb. muscle-bound mutt, decided
the box should go up on the table, out of reach.

Holly paced the floor of the hallway, back and forth by the
side of the table like an expectant father waiting for news
of the birth. And she howled and she whined and she cried.

(Maybe because there were no cigars in the house?)

When I could stand no more, I got the box down, crouching
close to see what she would do. Now, bear in mind that one
of these little things had already tried to bite the end off
my finger - it was a nasty nip for one that size. And they
came fitted with sharp grappling irons on each tiny hoof.

I thought Holly was pretty brave to shove her snout straight
down into the box, let alone pick up our noisy friend, ever
so gently, place him on the floor, roll him on his back and
then started to lick his now not-so-private parts with a
tongue that could bath an entire kitten in one swipe!

She knew, instinctively, what, at the time, I did not. That
*mother* has to do this to stimulate said apparatus to work.

The box stayed on the floor and the dog didn't leave the
side of it for the next three days and nights together. If
someone within so much as hiccuped, she was there, snouting
around to check on her newly adopted charges.

She stopped short of attempting to breast-feed. Oh, the
kittens tried, but Holly yelped as those needle sharp teeth
impaled on tender flesh! I therefore got the job of shoving
milk in one end with a syringe at two hourly intervals. I
wiped little hands and faces with a damp cloth, then held
each kitten up for Holly to take care of the other ends.

It was like a factory production line! And it was truly
magnificent to watch, be a part of and to learn from.

Do you see what I am getting at?

Those kittens obviously could not have survived without
food. But they also would not have survived without the
dog's attentions. Neither task was more, nor less important
than the other. Neither of us was competing, we simply HAD
to work together to get the job done. The result is the
lives of those three tiny, helpless mites who are now
growing up to be very fine and strong young cats.

(OK, a little confused about their identities. How many
cats do you know who come when their *mother* barks? :-)

It has also done masses to cement the relationship between
me and the dog. The responsibility she took on has changed
her personality entirely from self-centred to co-operative
and caring, but I think I learned more than anyone.

Teamwork is not always about competition and scoring points.
It's not about bosses and subordinates, there should be
*what's in it for me*, nor even you.

It's about what can be achieved together that's bigger than
itself and goes out beyond itself, yet still brings back
much more in terms of repayment and satisfaction.

results add up to way beyond the sum of the parts.

"The universe operates through dynamic exchange ... giving
and receiving are different aspects of the flow of energy
in the universe. And our willingness to give that which
we seek, we keep the abundance of the universe circulating
in our lives." ------Deepak Chopra