Thursday, 29 October 2009

Halloween.....Trick or Treat!

I am totally getting into the Halloween spirit this year. But no silly costumes for me. I have chosen something very stylish. And noble.

Meet Count Ottula. (Imagine you hear thunder rolling in the distance. And the hooting of owls.)
And from now on I shall speak in zer accent of zer Transylvanian. And I shall make use of my power to teach zer squirrels not to tease zer Count - zey shall get a fright when I flap into zer tree and give zem a BIG smile.... (Imagine more ominous thunder now, if you would).

Until zen, Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Am I grouchy? .... that depends....

People sometimes accuse me of being a little bit on the sulky side. I think that is totally unfair!I am not looking glum all the time. I am sometimes incredibly cheerful and virtually skipping through the world. Of course those are the times when I am OUTside. Not when I am cooped up INside. INside = ;o( But OUTside = ;o)
It's quite simple really! There are of course exceptions. Like mealtimes. Rain. Sleet. You know, things that can tip the edge of the mouth in the opposite direction.

But, whether you think I am cheerful or not depends entirely on where we meet.

Sunday, 25 October 2009

Clock change - schmock change...

What's with the daylight saving time? Who are we saving daylight from? Nightlight? Time thieves, who are just going to waste it? It's a mystery, wrapped in an enigma, to me. And I hate it when the clocks change. Already we were facing the usual weekend delay. I cannot get STAFF out of bed before 6:12am on a Sunday. I have talked to THEM about this laziness, but to no avail. So, in essence, my walk was already delayed by one (1!) hour. And then the clocks changed. So, now my walk was delayed by more than two (2!) hours. I was absolutely outraged at such a late start, which I knew, knew, would mean that I'd miss the fox, the woods would be full of over-excited "exercise on weekends only"-dogs, and, crucially, my breakfast would be delayed at least 2 hours. Not a good start!But when we got to the woods, I began to realize that I had perhaps , unusually so for such a optimistic and happy-go-lucky non-complaining chap like myself, been a touch pessimistic. Because the woods were full of Fun! (aka squirrels). And the fox's scent was still all over the place! And there were no other dogs. Wahey!
The only problem with all the excitement is that you don't know where to go first. Or whether to go there at all! I find myself making high-pressured adrenaline decisions all the time! If I go hither, will I miss something better tither? Oh, sweet torture of sensory overload!
I decided to get me a nice stick. I just absolutely ♥ chewing sticks. And as you can see I found a nice and big one. Of course the two-legged spoil sports tried to discourage me with patronising comments. Yes, I could see that it was technically a tree. And technically still in the ground. But I was working on those issues, dangit! A tree is really just a stick in the making, isn't it.
In any case, unrelated to STAFFs' negative comments, I got bored. THEY will say that I have a short attention span, but this is not true. I just have many interests! And I like to pursue them all at once.
I found a nice puddle to drink from. It had a really nice muddy flavour, with a hint of horse-apple. Delicious! I guess I have mud-lips. So? You should see STAFF when THEY've been on the hot cacao.
All in all, I cannot help but smile. I am having a fantastic morning outing. I am in such a good mood, that I was even cooperative with the picture taking. Normally I like to see how many shots of my bottom I can get STAFF to take by moving out of the frame at just the right time. But today I changed tack.
So, when STAFF said "let's try for a close-up" I spotted my opportunity! Down on THEIR knees THEY went, peered through the lens and then seemed to get a bit of a shock. Hahaha! THEY did say "close-up". Can't blame me for complying with THEIR wishes.
Teehee, I am still chuckling at that...And, of course, I had my Squirrel encounters. Little rascals! Sitting on the ground, eating nuts, but as soon as you move in to eat them, they go up a tree. How's that fair?
I made it very clear that I much desired them to come down again!
Very, very clear! And I called for several minutes. But nothing! Wildlife of today. No manners!

And now, after all the running and excitement and the late start, and the fox and the squirrels and the leafs and the trees, I am having a little rest.

Even a clock change cannot spoil my mood today. Life, right here and right now, is good!

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Autumn: Time to reconnect with my Fox buddies

I can't believe I've not been writing anything at all for nearly a whole month. Well, all I can say is that September and October are my busiest months. There's the last rays of sunshine to fill up the Sun cells, the dates with Lola the greyhound, the fox hunting, sending STAFF back to school.... It's a totally packed schedule!
STAFF bought the house we live in before I arrived with THEM. And as THEY didn't benefit from my expert advice at the time of purchase, THEY did not calculate that the sun would not shine unto the sofa during all seasons. Shockingly, in winter, we don't seem to get any sun on them at all! I find that a most lamentable state of affairs. And have intimated my discontent on this issue to STAFF. To no avail. I mean, something so basic, you'd have thought THEY could work that out on THEIR own. But, alas, you cannot take anything for granted with THEM.

Now I am wise to the situation, when autumn comes, I charge my sun cells up, to make sure the warm, content feeling imprints itself on the memory cells in my fur and tides me over through the cold winters. It can be quite stressful following the sun around all day. But what's a man to do?

Once I have charged up with all the heat and warmth, I am naturally loathe to let go of even a single little heat molecule. And in my quest for heat preservation, I have learned several interesting facts:
  1. Even looking a little bit cold will have STAFF come running with a blanket.
  2. When you pull the blanket over your head, you are in an oasis of peace, quiet and nice smells (leave the nose out though!)
  3. when you make little grumbling sounds, STAFF look very happy and report immense job satisfaction.
  4. Point 3, increases the chances of 1. happening again. A very Happy Cycle!
In any case, as I was snoozing I was contemplating a couple of very important things. First and foremost a most exciting development on the Front D'amour! Oh yes! Lola, the sexy greyhound I have been carrying a torch for since the day I first sniffed her, is coming over to my house! A date! I am so excited, I can't even sleep at night! And, if I am honest, I worry a little. I have never had a date. What if we run out of stuff to say? What if she notices that the accident at the vets makes me flinch every time someone says 'balls'? What, and this is most likely to happen, STAFF embarrass me? As I was lying, worry creeping through me like a snail through a lettuce patch, slowly but surely gnawing away, I noticed a hitherto unconsidered source of worry and concern. My feet. Or, to be more precise, the lusciously hirsute state of the space between my paws! Is this normal for a guy? What if Lola doesn't like it? Should I shave or wax or trim or leave it as it is? I just do not know. And it is pointless asking STAFF.... I have caught THEM looking at the furry tufts with the unmistakeable intention to fluff them. A raised eye-brow was enough non-verbal communication to put a stop to that plan. Honestly! Get a grip! So, I shall have to remain unsure. And just not know...

Well, I can't worry about that now. I'll have to wait until she comes over and hope for the best.

It is that wonderful time of year when the days get shorter and the morning outings are all in the dark. STAFF and I always really look forward to that. Well, I assume STAFF do. It is hard to tell with THEM... THEY aren't always as bright-eyed and bushy tailed in the morning as you'd expect. So, it is very important for me to get THEM out of bed and focus THEM on leaving the house. And early! And quickly! Otherwise all the good wildlife might have been snapped up by someone else!
It is always very tense when I am waiting to see when we're going or, goodness gracious, if we're going! All this is a source of immense stress to me until we are actually in the woods. And I am out of the car. Because we did once drive into a deer park, and straight back out again. STAFF muttered that it was closing and we couldn't stay, or something. I am not sure. Couldn't hear THEM very well over the barking!

In any case. Once we are in the woods, STAFF trudge around with THEIR head torches, trying not to fall over stuff. And I, well I get to do my own thing. THEY can't see me! Frreeeddddddoooommmmmm! Of course I check in every now and then. It makes THEM feel better. And me.
Mainly because I get a snack! I have trained THEM well, if I say so myself.... In any case, I used to think it was a bit of a nuisance to have THEM trudge round like great, big lumbering, stumbling Cyclopses. Scaring away all hunteables. But, I now realise that THEY create a marvelous diversion, and when the wildlife flees before the lumbering One-Beamed-Vision, the Grey Ghost Hunter can pounce!
My favourite hunting buddy is a Fox. Cute little thing. We meet most mornings. Have a good run and hunt and then wave good-bye until the next morrow. Here you can see me in Red-Eye hunting mode. Scary, huh?
And I am particularly pleased with this action shot of me hunting the fox. Do you see it? No? Look more closely! Oh, ok, it might not have come out so well, but I was within a whisker of getting him. Oooh, it was exciting!

After that nice hunt I was filled with an immense sense of pride. And satisfaction. I was born to hunt. I love every second of it! And the thrill is in the chase. Catching the fox would totally ruin my fun the next day. Who would I chase then? I am taking a long-term perspective on this. Hunt, let live, hunt again. That's my, not very snappy, motto.

And just look at us here. No wonder we are scaring the wildlife! Makes me chuckle!

And then at home, I get a toweling massage. And to sweeten an already sweet deal, STAFF issue me with a little pile of snacks first.
But I have to wait before I can tuck in. Seconds turn into minutes. Minutes. Into hours. Hours into days. Days into weeks. Weeks into months. Months into years.
And still I am waiting.
And then more waiting before I am allowed to do my morning's biscuit treasure hunt. Really, I feel for those chaps waiting for Godot. I am sure I do more waiting than that!
I wonder whether they ever tried the cute Puppy Pester Look. That normally works for me!
And of course I have been experimenting more with blanket positions and coverage. On a cold afternoon, is there anything better than being snuggly on the sofa?

When the heat builds up I gently unfurl. Making sure I do not lose too much heat!

All in all, autumn is such a busy time. Tomorrow I'll try and get a picture of my friend the fox. If only I could convince him to stand still for long enough! But no matter how much I call after him, he doesn't seem to want to stop. Strange. In any case. I'll try again tomorrow.

Good night.

Sunday, 4 October 2009

September - full of ups and downs

So, September. I like September. It heralds the beginning of autumn. And autumn has plenty of interesting things rustling in the colouring leaves. Oh yes. And some of those very interesting autumnal rustlers are right in my very own home territory. A fox, vulpes vulpes (so good they named him twice!), lives at the bottom of my garden in the ivy covering the garden wall. Moving into a hunting hound's garden takes some courage and I admire that. But I am still going to try and catch the little bugger! Much hunting is, of course, not a matter of high adrenaline chase-excitement, but hours of muscle-cramping stake-out staring.
And here I an in full hunting action mode! I held this pose for hours. There wasn't any movement in the ivy for hours, but as you know, the fox is sly! I knew, as soon as I turned around it would move. I couldn't let that happen! So I stayed. And stared. Regrettably, STAFF have no real understanding of what it means to be a dedicated hunter. So when I started shaking all over from muscle cramp, THEY forced me to go inside and thaw out by a roasting fire. Gaw, THEY can be so despicably mean!

After my disappointment with the fox hunting I was naturally a little wound up. So, imagine my surprised excitement when I chanced upon a squirrel who was paying a lot of attention to gathering nuts, but altogether too little attention to the shadow that started looming behind, blocking out the sun, letting out a mighty roar and pouncing without pity. (Er, that was me, if you didn't get it from the description) So, that squirrel was mine! No more squeaking and chattering at me from the safety of a tree! That little squeaker was dead!

Buoyed by such success and with STAFF taking me on very long morning patrols, crashing through the best woods, at the break of dawn, sniffing, chasing, hunting, I was feeling alive and buzzing! I was a happy chap. No, credit, where credit is due, STAFF made me happy. Until....

.... until THEY forced me out on another early morning jaunt to the woods. Did I mention these jaunts? Forcing me to run for miles through woods? Where did THEY get the idea that I like this kind of stuff? I'm sure I don't know! Anyway, on one of these stupid jaunts, I was traveling backwards along the path, jumping, and conveying a list of grievances to STAFF (all perfectly normal behaviour!) when a tree root jumped up and took out my back leg! Aaarh! I was sure it had been a clean amputation! Ok, so there was no blood. But I could not put my leg down, try as I might. Naturally, one STAFF went immediately to fetch the car and I waited with the other STAFF. And before I could even say "I'm fine, really" I found myself at the vets. Bad. The vet gave me an injection. Double bad. And told STAFF to keep me captive inside the house for at least 1 whole day. Triple bad! And there was nothing even really wrong with my leg. Which I told them. It is all beyond the pale!

So, now I am forced to lie on my bed. And do nothing. I got so bored I fell asleep. Captivity was unbearable. Years had passed. But when I asked STAFF THEY tried to mess with my mind by saying that we only got back from the vet's 5 minutes ago. Is there no end to THEIR depravity?
Incidentally, this monogrammed blanket is just the coziest thing I ever have had! But that is by the by! I have a whole other 1/2 day of this! How will I cope?

Well, actually, I got together with a few other smart canines and we have formed a secret adventure gang. I am totally incognito now. Smart, eh! Now I can go on adventures STAFF won't even know anything about.

I just hope that I can also resume my morning and evening patrols soon. I do so miss my trips to the woods.

By the way, there are no logical inconsistencies in this. It all makes perfect sense to me! If you think it doesn't, well, perhaps you need to study the Weimaraner School of Logic in some more detail. I am offering correspondence courses for the serious student.