Friday 30 November 2007

Keira - welcome to our World

A new friend! Being collected today from Romney Marsh by Xena the Warrior Princess, husband Steve and top Grandson Cole, an 8 week old black-furred ball of fluff German Shepherd bitch puppy. At least we hope so - was meant to happen at 1pm but Dad (whose colleague Xena is) has had no replies yet to his text. Pics and excited descriptions soon, we hope.

Go Keira!

Meanwhile, warm and wet. Dad's laid a fire because he promised Megan one last night, but we can't realistically see anyone lighting it - we'd bake!

Weekend is here..... have a crackin' one


Wednesday 28 November 2007

Howlin' Wolf

Funny ol' chap, Haggis on occasions. Normally fairly contented and happy with life, but always looking slightly anxious - see quite a few of the pics on this blog if you don't know what I mean.

But in H's world, he likes "order". That means when a phone rings, a human races to answer it promptly, and when an alarm clock goes off a human is not only in the bed, but also wakes up, stretches out a drowsy arm and silences the thing. Within seconds - after a few rings (phone) or beeps (clock).

If this does not happen, Haggis's little world falls apart. He is desolated and deeply distressed; traumatised even. He can cope for a few rings but then sure enough, drifting through from the next room comes Owwoo - owwoo - owwooooo, tentatively at first, but quickly rising to a crescendo of oWWOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! going on and on and on. It's no good just raising your voice, you humans and saying "OK Haggis - it's only the phone... shhh now!". Once he's up and running he needs a human to go to him and cuddle him reassuringly, where upon he'll calm down.

Humans, being humans are most concerned about this and hate to be a nuisance to their lovely neighbours, so they're mortified at the thought that he'll be heard and annoy anyone. The neighbours luckily love us and reassure Mum and Dad that "You'd never know you guys had three dogs - we never hear a peep out of them!...... except occasionally when we hear Haggis. We used to race round to see what was up, thinking he was in deep distress... but now we know it's just the phone". Dad hopes they're not just being nice, and it really is just "occasionally"

Impressive noise, though H!


Tuesday 27 November 2007

Challock Forest

We love these stray days off work Dad is taking to use up his hols (we're told you lose them unless you take them, but to us, every day is a holiday....). We always get a good walk - Challock Forest this morning which is all fallen leaves, just a few left up on the trees, and autumn colours even on the baby larches. The Dad is always coming and going on various errands. We all got bought a brightly coloured new bed today, as the old one, even when freshly washed, looks decidedly grey.

As well as that he's been up in the loft, down to the shed, under the sink and all over, ticking off jobs on a list as he goes. I think he's about to collapse for an "old gits lie-down", poor old soul


Monday 26 November 2007

Oooo-ow... My Tummy Hurts!

It is said that I may have dug up something unspeakable in the garden and eaten it. This has to do with Mum finding me coming back indoors with a wet dirty chin and looking a bit hang dog. Ears are down - in "Yoda" mode. It is further said that I do a good line in "dying swan" ("just like Megan used to do") to get sympathy when I am feeling awful and my belly aches. Ah well, I'm off my food to a point - cat food and sweeties are still attractive, but the bowls of standard dog food remain untouched or, at least, uncleared. Tonight I managed half a bowl.

Dad's no help. He disappeared again for most of Sunday, off with his 2CV boys ripping chunks off their project car, Mademoiselle d'Armentieres. We got a brilliant walk first, admittedly, all round the blackcurrant fields (as were) but even so I feel a bit of a 2CV widow. Made up for it tonight when he curls up with Top Gear and "Long Way Down", 2 hours of relaxing on the sofa with Dad, 3 dogs and 2 cats. Mum? She'd snuck off with a book - not a great one for Jeremy Clarkson, my Mum!

Real-Dad, Hector finally got to the vet about his hedgehog scar, and is now on 6 weeks of antibiotics. First-Dad is dispairing, running out of cunning ways to hide pills. Our Dad has it easy,as we're all suckers for cat food at breakfast time. A teaspoon after he's fed the cats, hides Meggie's Vetoryl, and we don't mind that ours contain no "secret additives". First Dad though has tried old favourites like cheese triangles (Hector can suck the cheese off then spits out the pill -- pftui!), normal cheese, crumbling the tablet into ice cream , and even icecream with crumbled ginger-nuts. Hector's gonna be free of infection but 30 kilo's


Saturday 24 November 2007

Albertine and Stag Beetles

The gang have been off work today, so they've been catching up on a few tidying jobs around the garden, which is good for us, because we get to snuffle about "helping" eaten up by curiosity at some of the human antics. First job, it seemed was to trim the enormous Albertine climbing rose adorning the back of the house. This involves Dad scurrying up and down a ladder with secateurs and lobbing prickly bits of rose down to Mum on the terrace below. Her job is to gather these up and bag them in a huge "Builder Centre" one ton bag, before we dogs can get entangled in them.

Occasionally this also involves Dad getting entangled himself, as she is a thorny old girl, but I think calling her a "vicious, spiteful demon" is a bit unwarranted. Also this is the chance to rake out the old sparrow nests from the "sparrow terrace" (all 3 compartments used this year) and the other nest boxes among the Albertine.

Mum and Dad are fascinated by the building materials the spugs seem to use - lots of dog hair as you'd expect - still identifiable hanks of Megan's wavy belly-hair -, but also loft insulation lagging, bits of a green spongey ball they can recall me ripping to bits on the paving, baler twine and so on. Even a mummified dead dried up unsuccessful fledgeling buried under a 2nd nest (we dogs have grabbed that and run off, but we are spotted by Mum who yells and chases us, saying it's "gross").

Dad also digs up the buried B+Q buckets of shredded rotting wood, buried last year up to their rims as part of a Stag-Beetle survey for the People's Trust for Endangered Species ( . We rummage through the old wood but no stag beetle grubs this year

Our nice long walk takes us round the boat yard and back through town, where the loud speakers are now playing Slade Christmas songs and all is festive jolliness... Hmmm. We meet a couple who live up the road opposite where my Sis' Ellie lives. They have a 5 year old westie (Jock) and a "cav" called "Twig" (Twiglet?). Jock is always immaculate - bright persil white and always looking "just groomed".

This must be a high maintenance system, which is (in my unbiassed opinion (!)) bad for dogs and should be discouraged at all costs. We don't mind looking, by comparison, grey, shaggy and scruffed, Dad, especially Haggis who, despite being shampoo'd a couple of weeks back, looks like he's not been bathed for months.

The pictures? That's Megan on the left, haggis centre and me right. Felix is far left

Enjoy the rest of the weekend


Friday 23 November 2007

Shut out by the Angel

Possibly divine punishment for chewing that lighter. I love, at the moment, as soon as I'm released through the back door, to race down the garden and check out the builders and their cars through the beech hedge; the guys working on the huge building sit behind our house.

The Angel Betty had come round during the day to let us out and then had nipped upstairs for something. Shutting the door, she'd gone back round to her house. A couple of hours later, Jim was saying to her "Ahhhh.... (Deefer's Mum) must be back - is that Deefer I can hear barking?". Later still the Angel B had looked out the front and noticed that our car was not back, so she asked Jim "Are you sure she's back?".

They decided to check on me and my occasional shouts (it's these builders - they need telling!) and realised that they'd shut me out for a couple of hours. No damage done - it was a warm day. I had shot out while B was upstairs and then kept quiet while the Angel vamoosed! Cunning escape plot huh?

Have a great weekend


Thursday 22 November 2007

Solvent Abuse

Ahhh Busted again! This time I'm not so much in trouble, as the subject of curiosity among the humans. The lighter pictured was found in my bed (with the bits) and with puppy tooth marks around the hole (allegedly) chewed in it. Now come on! That's not conclusive proof. The cats use that bed sometimes, M'Lud.

Round here, though, there's no justice. Just because I destroyed a similar lighter about 2 weeks ago (allegedly) chewing the top right off. It didn't go on the blog at the time and I would have got away with it as a "one-off" but now Mum and Dad are thinking there is a pattern forming, and are looking under my dog-bed "rug" for Evostick tubes and plastic bags.

Both are wishing they could have been flies on the wall when I bit through the casing and got my first mouthful of the lighter fluid. How mean is that. Cleared my sinusses out a treat!


Wednesday 21 November 2007

How do you manage three?

All warm again, but fairly wet. Dad home fairly late, but armed with a surprise - a yellow tough-plastic frisbee, like the one I tried to half-inch off Bindy. But this one's mine! It's excellent - Dad throws it edge-ways so it rolls and rolls, gradually curving in more and more as it slows down and leans over. And again... and again... and again

All three of us thoroughly approve of this. I get to run myself ragged, and come home panting like a marathon runner, while Haggis gets a night off from being persecuted by me chasing him about and launching "Kato" attacks on him ("Not NOW, Kato!"). Megan gets to mooch about in a casual manner, as befits a Dowager Duchess of advancing years

On the Rec we meet a young father returning from the kiddie's play furniture with 2 tots (maybe 18 months and 3?) and a very smartly groomed 5 year old bitch westie called Magic (which seems to get shortened to "Madge" which I'm sure can't be right!). The father asks our Dad "How do you manage three?" as Magic runs in circles chased by me and derailed occasionally by Haggis. Unseen, the oldest tot lep's out of the push chair and takes off across the grass. "A bit easier than you manage three where only one is a dog", says Dad. The father sees where our Dad's pointing and laughs.. "Oy! How did you get out of there?". Child is safely retrieved and strapped more successfully into push chair


Monday 19 November 2007

They said there'd be snow...

Ooops - can't quite get the keyboard into the right position - Haggis sitting on the wire!

Well - mighty cold it may have been yesterday and there was talk of snow on the radio, but it just kept on raining, and now it's turned a bit milder, so I guess we'll have to wait. Haggis was actually 6 by the time he saw proper snow - just the way it worked out with his youth and 5 mild winters. In Megan's pup-hood, there was so much snow that Dad remembers building her an igloo, then lobbing "sweeties" in through the entrance so she'd go in for them and he could get photo's of her emerging.

These wet evenings, and with Dad liking to lay the fire before he walks us, it's often dark by the time we go out. OK for us - we're white, so we can be seen in the dark. Tonight we met Darcie, a young black cocker with a red flashing collar. Good idea!


Sunday 18 November 2007

Jim, Gigot and Mademoiselle

Up early this morning and off on a nice long walk round the boat yard and back through town. We meet up with neighbour Jim and brown cocker Megan (no relation) - very confusing to have 2 Megan's next door to each other; "ours" keeps hearing Jim talking to "his" and thinking he's calling her. But Meg-next-door was a rescue dog and came already named, so there was no getting round it.

We also meet Gigot's family out for a stroll as we're crossing back across the Rec. Gigot (see his sad story in an earlier post) is obviously thriving in his new family and looks extremely well. He's just been clipped and groomed too, so he put us raggamuffins to shame with his gorgeous clip. Maybe it's a "show" clip, I'm not sure, but he even had his ears almost shaved except for a little frilly pom-pom on the end of each. (Dad - don't even THINK about it!). Out with him are his housemates, Truffles and Storm. We also see the Jack Russell "Bindy" and have a great chase about.

Once we're back, Dad's shot off to Preston, east of Canterbury to find his 2CV mates to finally start work on the club's project car, known as "Mademoiselle d'Armentieres". Today, they tell me, they're in destruct mode, taking off doors, bonnet, roof, bootlid, removing engine and gearbox, and starting to cut out rusty floors and bulkhead. And all in among those lovely farm buildings where we have such fun when we're on 2CV camp.

Dad comes home freezing cold and starving, to be revived by some Mum soup. It feels like it might snow. It's cold and damp, and with the wind chill we can all beleive it. The news is full of snow reports in places up north like "Snake Pass" and even down as far as Kidderminster.

Winter's here alright


Saturday 17 November 2007

Levee loop

Dad had been hoping for some frost this morning, to get some nice white pics, but it was not to be. If there had been any, then it had gone by the time we stirred from the "scratcher". No matter - we got a lovely long walk out through the allotments, then east along the North side of the railway line as far as you can go. We turned north through the fields to Nagden's Farm and came back along the creek's levee bank. Normally we can't do that in November (unless it's frosty) because it's so sloppy wet, but not this year.

Aside from that, a nice lazy weekend day, with the humans doing a bit of shopping and a lot of sitting around reading. They've now lit a fire, so we're doing a lot of sitting around basking.


Friday 16 November 2007

Jack Frost nippin' at your nose

Freezing evenings and cold frosty mornings. Proper frost to scrape off the car in the morning before Dad can start driving. First thing Dad does when he gets home is lay the fire. A pure indulgence - the house has central heating and in fact (Says Dad) the thermostat is in the dining room where the fire is, so the fire heats the thermostat, the heating turns off and the rest of the house goes cold!
Never mind, we (That's especially Mum, but also all three dogs and both cats, plus Dad) love a coal and log fire, so here's a pic of us stretched out tonight after our walk. Mississippi on the left, me centrally (natch!) and Felix right. Look carefully* and you can also see Haggis peering round the fire breast on the (oops - very grubby) dog bed to the right. Look even more carefully and you can see, bottom left a small fragment of Meggie (trust me! it is!). Dad is taking this shot. Mum is sitting at the dining table just out of shot to the right, reading a book, warming her "kiddlies". A blissful Friday night, when all's said and done. The entire family enjoying a real fire.
Have a great weekend
ps -* I assume, dear reader, that you've sussed that if you click on the pics here you can expand them up to full screen size and even save them down to your own machine.

Thursday 15 November 2007

Phone the RSPCA

Fantastic walk tonight - all round the back of the allotments, but AT NIGHT! Night noises - animals scurrying for cover - rabbits and r*ts, frosty air, damp grass. Even Meggie was all fired up and electric in the dark, racing about like a young one, rather than her usual slow plod. I, unfortunately, raced through a particularly fluffy dry pile of old compost and got absolutely covered in bits, so I needed a brush out. I hate that! Dad tells me to shoosh and that he's not pulling much or very hard, but I enjoy a good "drama queen" squeak every now and then, just to scare him!

No such sympathy from Mum this morning. She sends an email to Dad from work which covers all sorts but ends with .....

" She's also off her feed. She seems to think she'll be better later though, as she was carefully guarding her food bowl from all comers. In the end, I picked it up as the sight of her desperately trying to find a way to go out and pee while remaining on guard - in the face of a slying circling Haggis - was making me laugh too hard."

Now, I ask you, is that anyway to treat a poor defenceless puppy.

Somebody should phone the RSPCA


Wednesday 14 November 2007

Dash to the Vet's

Mum was having a nightmare morning. It's never a good sign - Mum is rather like the Dowager Duchess Megan when it comes to mornings. Mornings are for lying in bed luxuriating while reading the papers and being brought cups of tea by those of a male, early riser persuasion. Felix had pee'd up a door post in the kitchen, and a spreading puddle of pee was taking over the kitchen floor.

Time was pressing on towards "going off to work" time. Dad was already long gone in the main car. Megan decided that Mum trying to empty the sink so she could fill a basin with bleachy water, was a good time to poke Mum's calves with her (Meg's) nose in an "I want attention, or at least my water bowl filled up" manner. I chose that moment to sneak past Mum and raid the cat food bowls. I got shoo'd out, I thought rather harshly, and headed upstairs to persecute the H, who was on the put-me-up bed in the spare room. Mum lifted the cat bowls to clean the floor, much to the loud protest of Missi, who already had her nose in hers

Mum sorted the floor, replaced the cat bowls and, having long since run out of time for a dog walk, called us down for a farewell "sweetie" (= dog treat). Half way down the stairs, she noticed me stop running and go to try to attack my own cheek with a front paw (not anything you want to try on a steep flight of stairs). I was struggling for breath, and had started choking. Mum tried to look in my mouth, but I'm a wriggly perisher at the best of times, and she couldn't see anything. There was no immediate danger of me choking to death. Mum, still in "dog walk" casuals, grabbed me, threw me in the 2CV and headed for the vet, while I struggled to dislodge the foreign body, which was squeaking rather like rubber on teeth.

Luckily the 2CV started obediently (Mum HATES that car, so if it hadn't it would surely have been berated with a heavy rock, so Dad was releived at this!) and soon we were at the vets. First our man John couldn't see anything but Mum insisted he look closer, as I'd still been squeaking as recently as at the reception. They found, in the end, the pictured small cylinder of soft plastic / rubber wedged on the inside of the gap between my right canine and the tooth in front, John whipped it out, and we all relaxed.

For being so "bold" I got an anti-inflammatory jab ("Meep!"), and Dad got a text which relayed all this misfortune and ended "and all I've got to look forward to is this chuffin' soup!". The humans are on diets, so lunch is no longer bacon butties, cakes and all the good things in life).

The offending item is the rubber foot from the laminator, which had been lying on the spare bed...... I have (of course) no idea how it got wedged between my teeth.


(not a puppy any more so I don't chew stuff, honest)

Tuesday 13 November 2007

Archie is "Thug" says vet

Ahh, poor Archie, my beloved brother. Contrary to my story last week, he didn't get his jabs on the same night as me, as there was a mix up with the dates. He was last night, with real-Mum, Mollie. Mollie is apparently no problem, licking the vet's face and taking her treatment in true, hard Scottish style. But she was so long on the table that (First-Dad says) Archie got bored and by the time he was up there he wasn't having any of it.

Possibly from as long ago as his hedge-hog carrying-indoors incident, real Dad, Hector has a scarry lump under his chin and the vet needed to look at it, but Hector was not going to co-operate, first-Dad had to wrangle him solidly under an arm while he wriggled and protested. First-Mum was reported to be curling at the edges with shame, as the vet was laughing "Have you done nothing to train this dog?"

I'm proud of them both! They are true blue members of the Monarch* family!

Dad must stop at our vet's tonight for Meggie's Vetoryl, so time he's got in, lit a fire and waited for Mum, it's dark. We go a normal walk - known as the Macknade loop, but at night it's much more exciting - all those unfamiliar sights, sounds, smells! It's cold and spitting in the blustery wind. Some of Dad's work lot were reporting flurries of snow this morning over "Bluebell Hill". Winter is on it's way, for sure


*Monarch? First Dad's mission is to own a gang of westies, all named after characters in the TV series "Monarch of the Glen" - hence Archie, Mollie, Hector. We are all waiting for "Gollie the Ghillie". Dad recalls the series with a laugh - wondering how they got to write lines like "Ach... Don't be silly, Mollie, it's only Gollie the Ghillie" etc

Monday 12 November 2007


We checked the diary. I have now been living at Mum and Dad's a whole year as on Saturday just gone (the 10th)

We have just been for a lovely race about on the Rec. It's really chilly, so it's good to run about and warm up, and what better way than to persecute a plastic bottle. Frijj Strawberry flavour this time, so I can have a surruptitious slurp in between leaving it for Dad to kick or throw and giving it back to him. I do look rather wistfully though, at "proper toys" - had great fun the other day with a soft, luminous green frisbee, and tonight tried to wrangle a ball-on-rope off a golden retriever, but he wasn't having any of it. Da-a-ad..... When's Christmas?

The cats, meanwhile, think they have got away without being "Frontline"d, but Mum was at Mississippi with the fine-tooth comb (=nit comb) while the two were sitting in the easy chairs warming their knees at the coal fire last night, and I have heard the humans plotting. I'm thinking those cats are gonna get sorted as soon as Mum is home from work

We are, it seems, a constant source of education - no local Mum can resist, when they come upon us, asking their toddlers "How many Doggies?". All local children will have a firm grounding in counting up to three, anyway. Most of them get it right, but Dad was chuckling at one little pink-clad mite tonight who proudly declared "One... Two.... Six!"


Saturday 10 November 2007

A Delicious Roll

Some nice pics for you today. I am hoping that following deep research which established that they will appear in the blog in the reverse order to that in which they were uploaded, I can describe them in a sensible order.
The day starts with a lovely walk through Challock Forest - all dried, crunchy, rustly autumn leaves and opportunities to scurry about. Also a chance for a gorgeous delicious roll in the leaves to pick up all the scents a dog could possibly need. Pic 1 is of Meggie (left) and the H walking towards the camera. Pic 2 has Haggis (bottom of shot) and my good self rolling in the leaves.
I am back in the doo-doo having chewed the sole liners out of one of Mum's favourite comfy shoes , so Dad (if he wants to live, apparently) has to get in touch with a guy called the "Shoe Doctor". It's a dog thing. I cannot tell a lie. I did chew up the shoe.
Exhausted from our Challock walk we are delighted that Dad has decided that winter is here and has bought in coal and logs for some real fires. Here is a pic of myself (left) and the H stretched out in front of it
Fianlly, after 3 years of yowling and hissing at each other as soon as one got near the other, the two cats seem to have settled their differences and are now able to sleep together, curled up on the carver chair, much to the amazement of the humans. So here is photographic evidence of Felix (black and white) and Mississippi (brindled) in case we all wake up in the morning and think we've dreamed it!
Have a great weekend
Wound up by the continuing fireworks

Friday 9 November 2007

Tidal Surge

Recovering from my assault by the vet (only joking Rosie, doesn't do to get on the wrong side of medical people. You never know what they'll get called upon to do next!) I find Mum a bit concerned at the possibility of a "tidal surge". It seems that North winds have created a big 3m raise in water level progressing down the North Sea which, if it coincides with high tide at some points might be enough to over-whelm the sea defences. Our town, being on a tidal creek, is among those listed as vulnerable, and all the news broadcasts are mentioning East Anglia and Kent

The tide has already over-topped the Standard Quay once this year, where Dad's beloved Thames Sailing Barges moor up for maintenance, and they only draw about 2 or 3 feet soaking wet, so he's wondering if he'll find them up on the concrete, high and dry.

As it happens the surge bimbles down the coast and passes us without any breaching, so the evening news is full of relieved Environment Agency types saying things like "hair's breadth" and "within a whisker". Mum and Dad relax again.

Loving "Autumn Watch" at present (though we have a night off tonight). Single birds, rabbits, mice - anything scurrying or moving fast has me in full alert mode - ears up, neck craning, tail up, head cocking from side to side. Probably a favourite programme on TV just now.

Ah well. It's the weekend and we have nothing planned. Nobody visiting us, us not visiting anybody, so lots of relaxing and some nice dog walks are planned. A nice bit of forest and the autumn leaves would do me just fine!


Thursday 8 November 2007

Jabbed up!

Megan! I'm never gonna talk to you again. You had it all kept quiet what "annual inocculations" meant, so I went all unsuspecting into that dark night. Now, of course, I know that an apparently nice sweet young lady in a white coat fusses you all over, lets you sniff her face, prods and probes gently to get your trust, then ZAP! (Eeee! EEk! Yip YIP ! EEeeeeeeee-eeee!) ... Ahh, stop being such a drama queen (Dad says). Searing pain between my shoulder blades. She stuck something sharp in me!

I hear that Archie and Mollie are suffering the same fate tonight too, and Archie is reckonned to be as much a drama queen as me.

Worse part was that at the exact moment Dad was leading me round the side of the house to the car the heavens opened and a full waterfall of rain went whooshing down the back of Dad's trousers (he says... drama queen?) as he lent into the car to unhitch my lead from my collar. Payback time!


Tuesday 6 November 2007

Autumn-Watch Foxes

Ahhh... it's that time again. Bill Oddie's back, with strangely coloured hair and with (Dad sighs) Kate Humble. More importantly, so are the foxes. We westies LOVE foxes, and as soon as one appears on screen (or even a fox noise is played back with no image) we're there, gazes fixed on the screen, ears forward and locked, heads cocking this way and that, legs "stacked" like a show dog. Little excited whimpery noises are optional.

A really good shot will have us leppin' off the sofa (usually across any humans who happen to be in the way), chasing across to be nose-up to the TV. A good noise will see us charge to the back door to be let out to repel the obvious threat to our garden space

Ahhh Autumn Watch


Monday 5 November 2007

Remember remember

Haggis started it! Awake and scratching all night. "Company" they call it round here, so now Dad's been off to the vets and come back with some Frontline. Dad's done we three dogs already, but the cats are a 2-man job, plus "we" have to do Mississippi first, so she doesn't see Felix getting done and get all upset (I mean, as in "upset wetly all down the front of Mum's Chanel jacket"). Their time is to come, but Mum's not home yet.

Meanwhile, despite the fact that we've had fireworks going off all over the weekend, tonight is yer' actual Guy Fawkes, so we can expect a good bit of sporadic crackling, flashing and banging.

A card comes from the vet, through the post, especially for me. I have no idea at all what "annual inocculations" means but it sounds technical and fun. I heard Meggie say to Haggis "Act nat'ral, say nuttin' ". I'm booked in Thursday at 5pm. I'll tell you all about it when I get back


Sunday 4 November 2007

Woof, woof, Woof, WOOF, WOOF!

Woof, woof, Woof, WOOF, WOOF! - Haggis repelling all boarders of a fireworky nature, attempting to enter our air-space. The Nerve! How dare they!? He races outside and shouts them into submission. Megan joins him sometimes for a half-hearted "Ruff" but there's not much passion there. Me, I tend to protect the rear flank from a strategic position on Dad's lap.

Lovely walk round Reculver this morning. Mum had the "proper car", so we were in the 2CV. It was a lovely warm sunny morning with a gentle breeze blowing, so we did our whole usual loop. From Reculver towers we head Eastwards onto the sea wall, but cut inland (south) "behind" the oyster farm, and along the raised bank to the railway line. Then we head east along the railway till we meet a crossing point plus a north-south path that takes us back to the seawall just where there are some lagoons. Here we drop down onto the beach for a bit of a paddle, before heading back westwards to the towers and the carpark.

We meet a very handsome, newly clipped westie boy called Finlay, plus a "grumpy old git" (the owners words) spaniel who has to stay muzzled and on the lead. The explanation for his (Finlay's) name involved him coming from Romford but we didn't catch that. Perhaps there is a place called Finlay in Essex?

In the afternoon, I've been helping Dad shred all the apple, vibernum, quince and plum clippings. My help seems to involve mainly watching the output chute end to see if anything exciting, or edible should emerge. I promise you, it doesn't, but it's better than being stuck indoors.


Friday 2 November 2007

Terrier Heaven

Heaven! We were just setting off on our walk tonight, headed for the allotments when, coming down the side of the house, we were hailed by Ellie, (my sis) and her Mum, and all four of us immediately decided to head for the Rec where we sisters could have a long overdue run-around together. It's been ages.

We are still similar in size, even though Ellie's a bit shaggier, so she looks a bit bigger. No sooner were we off the leads than we were tearing round in small circles bowling each other over, with Haggis piling in occasionally to unbalance anyone who was still standing up.

We were joined by a lady who knew Ellie's Mum, and her young Jack Russell, Bindy. Next arrived another lady out with a black collie cross, Ben, and then the young jack Russell Mac, who we met the other day. Last came another JR, Patch and a young spaniel, Molly. 4 westies, 3 JR's and 3 other dogs all variously running about, chasing each other, or mooching round the humans. It was great fun - best gas for ages!

Bindy had appeared with a soft, hollow-centred luminous green frizbee, and we soon started chasing that, with Dad lobbing it huge distances, so that we young ones all got really tired

It was dark by the time we were done, and we met Mum walking back across the Rec towards the house.

Terrier Heaven!

Guy Fawkes night coming up, so fireworks to shout at. Not sure I'll have the energy!