Hello everyone. Hope you’ve had some good holidays with your chums. I may not have a holiday this year, although Chris keeps talking about a place called Rock Beach in Cornwall. He says it’s a lovely sandy place where we can just walk for miles and play in the sea. But will we get there? It’s such a long way to go. Mummy says it’s much nearer to drive to the Welsh coast.
I’m really enjoying using my very own door. I can have it open as long as I like, so long as it’s not really, really cold or pouring with rain. Some nights I stay in the garden until long after dark when Chris goes to bed. One night it was so hot mummy said I could have the door open all night if I wanted to, but Chris closed it when he went to bed. However a few hours later he was so hot that he got up again and we both went into the garden!
We’ve been out and about having the usual walks, by the canal or the river, along the cycle path where I always get in everyone’s way (!) and to Gowy Park of course. I call it the park because I don’t really know what it is. It’s not a real park. It’s got lots of big open spaces where I can run about chasing rabbits, and there are a lot of young trees, a couple of ponds of course and there’s even a little river called the Gowy. Once when I went there with Chris I ran around madly with two other Collies, Ben and Ellie who is red. It was great. Another time when I went with mummy there wasn’t another dog or person there. But one Sunday afternoon, as we arrived, Ben and Ellie were just leaving so I missed running around with them and only had time to say Hello. Later, we were just on our second circuit when it started to rain heavily. Whilst we were under the trees we managed to keep dry, but out in the open we got soaked. As we were making our way back to the car there was thunder and lightning, which I didn’t much like and started to whine and bark.
We go to the woods occasionally too. It’s good when the weather is hot because it’s so cool under the trees. I’m usually allowed off the lead most of the time and go chasing through the trees looking for squirrels. However I sometimes make mistakes, like the other day when I jumped on a Beagle. Mummy was cross and I had to go back on the lead for the rest of my walk. There are two different woods we go to and we have to go in the car to both of them, so I get a ride as well as a run.
When we go out, I always seem to know where we are going depending on which roads we take, especially if it’s in the car. I’m quite clever like that. And I bark like mad because I get so excited. And Chris and mummy howl at me and we all make lots of noise. It’s great fun. I also bark when I want something, like the car windows open, or especially my breakfast or my tea. Mind you my humans have encouraged me to make this noise; but now that I know what to do I get quite cheeky sometimes.
We all went out in the car together one day and had two walks on the beach, lunch outside a café with other dogs and ice cream when we got home. That was a lovely day. I only blotted my copy-book once when a Wire-haired German Pointer came over to say Hello and I growled nastily at him. Oh dear, there I go again. His human said if I was ten years old then I wouldn’t grow out of that – but I thought I’d been getting better.
Sometimes when we go for a walk by the river or the canal near Tower Wharf in Chester, Chris and mummy stop for coffee or even lunch at a café called The Cake Fairy, on the canal, near where ships on the river used to dock a long, long time ago. Here is where the canal and the river meet up. When we went the other day it was really sunny and we sat outside, and everyone said how lovely I was!
One day when Chris was out with his friend Neil, mummy took me out three times and then I went out again with Chris after tea. Mummy took me to two places I’d never been before, both down streets with houses along them. The first one was to see Helen, a lady who trims dogs – would that be for me do you think? Anyway she was on holiday. Phew. The other was at the end of my afternoon walk, when we went to some shops. I had to be left outside on my own for ages and ages – about five minutes mummy says. I was ever so brave and didn’t cry once.
I told you about Tilly Newfie in my last blog, didn’t I? Well, on one of my evening walks with mummy we met her again with her humans. And she’d had a hair cut. She looked really neat and cuddly. Also, she had one of her chums with her and he was even bigger than she was. There was I stuck between these two giants; I didn’t like it much so I started grumbling. I often do that – go and spoil the fun – silly me. Anyway, as I was saying, the other dog was a huge white Great Dane called George. Poor George was a rescued dog, like me, but deaf, nearly blind (with ice-blue eyes) and he had no tail. His humans said that they had ANOTHER dog at home, who was an Alsatian. Mummy said to me later that their dog-food bill must be horrendous.
I mentioned little Woody Wood Mouse last time too, I think. He’s still about, and potters around the garden in the evenings. He comes onto the patio right up to the door even when it’s open, picking up little bits of biscuit that I’ve dropped. He’s really cute, tiny with big round ears.
Of course the house-viewing is still on-going. We went to another one near the canal, so I had a lovely walk there. Next time we went to look at one near the sea – that was good. We had breakfast outside at an airfield place where helicopters kept buzzing about. They made a lot of noise and mummy thought I needed to wear ear-muffs. THEN we had a brilliant walk in the sand dunes. It was quite windy and the tide was up to the pebbles, so we didn’t go right down to the water this time. Mummy looked at the wild flowers and butterflies and I was allowed to charge about all over the place. We stopped to talk to a couple with 2 Deerhounds. Mummy wanted to take them home with us! Angus was about 2 years old and a bit of a wimp and stood close up to mummy’s leg. Hugo was a puppy and came right up to me, cheeky devil, so I barked loudly at him and he moved off. I had a fabulous time and I’d like to go there again. On the way home we stopped and had another lovely walk with just a little paddle in a stream which ran into the sea. By the time we got home I could barely stay awake long enough to eat my tea and I was starving. In fact I’d had such an exciting day that I was too tired to go for my evening walk.
Have I mentioned my near-neighbours to you, Polly Retriever and Max Russell? For some reason they don’t seem to like me very much, especially Max. He’s not a very nice person to know. He makes the most awful high-pitched barking and snarling noises at me, which sets off Polly. If ever we meet them on a walk . . . WELL, it’s bedlam. His mummy says he doesn’t do it with anyone else. One day he managed to get his head out of his collar and ran across the road to me. Luckily for him there was no traffic just at that moment. He’s got no road sense at all; but I can’t talk – I haven’t much either, although I am improving.
I’m not doing very well with my diet. I do so like my food, especially when I get little samples of what my humans are eating (unless it’s vegetables – yuk). I tried a bit of mummy’s home-made curried chicken one night – that was delish. And, of course, if there’s bacon and sausage available I’ll have a bit of that. Yes Please! Sometimes for my lunch I get bonios with a bit of cheese rubbed on them (my very own cheese & biscuits!). I must tell you that I tried a little piece of swordfish too – WOWIE! But these treats are only on special days, not every day (I wish). But, on the occasions when Chris has tried to give me less of my own food, I go asking for more.
Where’s my tea? Oh, do come on, I ‘m starving!
Ah, that’s better.
One day mummy went to visit auntie Elizabeth and on their way back from shopping mummy’s coat fell on the floor with her mobile phone in the pocket and auntie Elizabeth drove over it in her mobility scooter! So the next day I had to go to a shop with mummy to help her choose a new phone. On the walk home we met Sammy Wolf. He’s huge and looks just like a wolf, but I don’t know what he is really. By the time we’d walked home I was ready for an early tea.
Chris and mummy are always saying how clever I am, because I understand lots of words they say; then mummy had a letter about homeless Collies, which said that we are clever because some of us can understand up to 250 words. Wow, I wonder if I do.
Ahem. Oh dear. Helen came back from her holiday and a few days later I was taken to visit her. Chris left me with her for ages and whilst I was there she gave me a bath and a hair cut. Whilst I was waiting for her to finish one dog and start on me, I had to wait in a cage and it was horrible. Actually, I didn’t like the whole experience much and Helen said I’d been a wimp. Thanks. But I did feel a bit better afterwards when Chris came to pick me up.
Ha! The following week it was mummy’s turn for a hair cut. As Chris was away that time with the car, I was looking after mummy. She said she didn’t feel like walking all the way to the hairdressers and back so we went part of the way . . . by BUS! I’d never been on a bus before. When we got off the bus I had to be tied up to a fence for a bit which I wasn’t keen on and barked a bit. Steve, in the hairdressers, joked that I’d pulled the fence down and run off with it!Anyway mummy soon came out of the shop for me and we walked back home along a new footpath behind the village.
I’d been so good on the bus that the very next afternoon I went on a bus again, but this time I had to pay 45 pence. Mummy told the lady driver that I was a pensioner too and should be able to get a bus-pass. When we got off the bus we walked along the canal around Chester. It was a Race-day so we saw lots of people and eventually ended up at The Cake Fairy again. After I’d had a drink of water and mummy a coffee we walked all the way home along the canal, through a village and back along the lane passed the Rugby Club. I knew my way home from there. We’d been out all afternoon and were both tired. Mummy said she hoped I wouldn’t want to go out again after tea.
Must dash now. It’s time for Chris to take me for my evening walk.
Lots of love from Alfie