A bridge too far?

The steam was puffing off the tarmac as we left the beach today. All saturated, we huffed up the slipway slope in a state of sheer exhaustion. Missy was dripping wet from fetching sticks thrown to the waves, while I was sopping due to the fact that I’d been chasing every possible breed of bird through the shallows with never a hope of catching one.

The human on the other hand was wet right through from the heavy rain showers that unexpectedly arrived when we were 5 coves out with not the remotest sign of shelter. We momentarily took cover beneath a cliff but signs of recent avalanche activity in that general area soon sent us back out into the thunderous open beach.

‘Ah sure, can’t I change when we get home!’ I heard her say aloud. And with that we continued litter-picking on our merry way.

Some interesting finds after the windy weekend include a very heavy object which we thought might be from a road sign. But how did that end up washing in off the ocean tide we wondered? Nothing for it but to ask the Twitterati …

Sure enough we didn’t have to wait long for a reply. A helpful gent from Scotland explained… see screen grabs below.

I think a suitable music choice for today might be ‘Bridge over troubled water’ by Simon & Garfunkel 🎼🎹🎀

More anon!!

Some amazing finds

We have been busy. It’s been difficult to apply ourselves to blogging… so here goes, for today.

Our #2minutebeachcleans continue, though we spend a lot more time than 2 minutes. More like 2 hours. We three (Missy, who is here on holidays, myself & my human) have removed bags & bags of plastic from the local beaches. One weekend we had help from Hallie the terrier & her human. A lot the rubbish has been washed up but plenty is freshly discarded by careless humans. We know that because my human sometimes glances at the expiry dates on things such as crisp packets, yoghurt drinks bottles and biscuit wrappers, to name a few. Cigarette butts are our pet hates. My human tut-tuts every time she sees one.

We have found many items such as the obvious kids toys, buckets & spades etc. This one is ‘Tiny the puppy’ from the 2019 McDonalds fast food ‘Secret life of pets’ toy series. A Russian-made import (we hear)… we found it in the middle of a clump of shiny seaweed at the water’s edge. Still in perfect working order, it has a rolling wheel on the bottom that moves Tiny’s ears into a heart shape and then his ears flap as he’s propelled along by a human hand.

As seen at 3 minutes into the following YouTube video.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=11&ved=2ahUKEwjolLqY3ePjAhWQRBUIHVOIC1IQwqsBMAp6BAgKEAU&url=https%3A%2F%2Fm.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3D1Go6yElST3Q&usg=AOvVaw2RTT9JUC1c5oQoX_XZOhCK

πŸ’œ Awwww…. so glad he didn’t end up in a fish’s tummy. Or, shock/horror, imagine if he had crashed on the rocks & eventually broke into micro plastics & ended up in YOUR tummy.

More anon….

Hello again!

At long last I’m back at the Coves. For some time now I have been aching to outline my recent adventures in blog format but my human has been procrastinating.

Firstly let me say I’m all grown up now. The human says I’m the best dog in the world… but then adds ‘if only he’d stop jumping on people for cuddles’. 😳

I think the human takes good care of me. But not too sure at times. For instance….I no longer look like a spaniel/setter cross because the spa-man visited our house to give me a grooming session. (First in my life). The giant clippers & wind machine were frightening but it was heavenly in the summer heat that he took a lot of weight off my contours. However, now people assume I’m a ‘labrasomething’.

We also went to that house where cats and dogs visit and after telling the human I had tartar on my teeth, Jenny stuck needles in me. So after hearing that news, I started sticking my tongue out between my teeth in the evenings whilst lounging on my sun-room cushion and the human brought me to another cat/dog house for more needles, a long sleep, a missing molar, antibiotics & pain relief. The upside of that is I’ve been eating freshly boiled chicken with brown rice these past few days.

Last year I was all talk about the dogs we met on our outings and there have been plenty. The latest was a small bullock named Brady. Methinks the whole Brady Bunch was contained there in one dog’s body. He was ginormous. But well able to run & have high jinks nonetheless.

This summer the dogs aren’t quite the novelty for me anymore so I’ll mostly be letting you know about our beach combing activities. #2minutebeachclean to help clear the coves of plastic. Already we’ve had some interesting finds, a lot of which have washed up rather than being dumped. More anon.

In the meantime perhaps you might like to listen to the song ‘Message in a Bottle’. To put you in the mood for the next instalments.

SIGNED: I,Brufus.

I’m back!!

Hi y’all.

No doubt you’ve been wondering where I’ve been. Well so much has happened I’m not sure where to start.

After we left the Coves I spent a couple of days at my cousins’ house. I loved it there, although at times it was quite confusing. No matter where I ventured, indoors or out, upstairs or down, sitting or living room, kitchen or dining…. I kept seeing the same face. I realise my own human is getting on a bit in years & she is slowing down somewhat, but I found the speed of the two-legged in this cousins’ house to be amazing. One minute the grooming brush would be in action, quickly followed by a neck-cuddle, the odd screech, a tail-pull, a sly serving of indeterminate biscuit, TV cartoons in the background and lots of exciting sounds.

It took some time to dawn on me that this was the house of the three sets of girl twins I’d heard so much about. No wonder that it seemed one person could be everywhere at once πŸ˜‚

After a few thrilling days here my uncle & Missy came to drive me to the city. More excitement abounded but no sign of my own human. I resolved not to be sad. At least I had Missy to help keep my spirits up.

Two weeks later, the eventual joy of my human reunion knew no bounds. I love her so much, couldn’t be mad at her for leaving me.

By all accounts she was lounging around in the Italian countryside…. yeah- that fits alright. She has the look of someone who’s been eating pasta….

(Note to self! Apply for a doggie passport.)

Jewels in the crown?

It started off reasonably well. Usual parking space, tucked in tight to the farmer’s wall. Bounded from the boot. No other cars. No lead required. Glancing down from the brow of the slope, the tide was way out & there were no obvious beach walkers – this promised solitude for the human & glorious freedom for me.

Mmmmm…. Okaaaay…..We were mysteriously joined by Fred the seal-dog on Cove One. Dunno where he popped out of. Doggie playtime ensued until he was summoned by a resounding human whistle from above. Back he went as we ventured forward.

When we reached Cove Two I saw a bright orange object approaching from the water. Buoyed by the waves, its size was difficult to determine but the nearer it got, the larger it became. Soon I was able to identify that it had a multicoloured, bobbing crown.

By the time we reached Cove Three the mysterious phenomenon had changed course and was rapidly progressing towards the sandy beach. Shortly thereafter, it paused, 6 individual jewels of its crown took on a life of their own, popped off the hindquarters, into the wavy water and proceeded towards shore at the far end of the bay. One dark, moving part remained attached to the carrot-coloured shell.

Not sure if this new presence might be threatening, I continued to observe cautiously & we both proceeded with care. They started shedding their glowing outer skins, each revealing sleek & shiny black coats, not badly unlike my own – but less hairy. And then ….I realised they were human, had merely removed their life jackets and were spreading out on the rocks in their wetsuits for a picnic. Duh!!

My human chatted to the Mama picnicker momentarily but my interest in the kiddies’ sandwiches convinced her that we should do an about-turn and head back towards Cove Two. Well what do ye know?! There was another intruder approaching there. I realised that this one was a boat; a small, white vessel, with two fishing rods cocked straight up into the air, seeking a spot to come ashore. We stood & studied them. They waved. She waved back. I barked a ‘hello, but could you not find somewhere else to land?’ questioning sound. Interesting and all as they might be to meet up with & chat about local mackerel & pollock stocks, it might mean I’d be put on the lead & there’s not much fun in that kind of restraint on a beach.

Back at Cove One on our return journey the skies cleared & the sun beamed down BUT if there wasn’t another punt beached in the sand. No evidence of life around this one but I wondered if it was a sign of things to come. Sloops in every cove? Hope it won’t curtail my freedom & exuberance.

Back to the boot & homeward bound I presumed (no! I’m not going to choose that song todayπŸ˜‚) but as we were leaving the laneway our 🚘 turned right instead of the usual after-walk left. Mmmm. This could be interesting. Soon we passed the sign for the harbour without making the turn, which intrigued me. Oh man!!! We were headed for the lighthouse & cliff walk. Brill!

Janey-Mack, the place was jammed with tourists, camper vans, tents, walkers, picnickers, kids playing jumbo Jenga & life sized chess, amateur photographers zooming in on the colossal Bevel chair, toddlers, bouncing balls and queues for the cafe, shop & tours.

My human offered to take a photograph for a French couple who were using a complicated looking camera. But oh! She got it wrong. Great one of the lighthouse but the people were missingπŸ˜‚ …tried again. They seemed happy.

On we went along the cliffs (me on my newly purchased, elasticated, comfy lead but I didn’t mind being under control- simply delighted to be there). The waves were just right; lots of sound but at a distance & not threatening-looking. The sun was shining, everyone we met said hello & smiled. (‘Miles away from Twitter-land’, I heard a passerby comment.)

My human took time out to greet a visiting couple. They had stayed at a renowned local hostelry overnight and had a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Well! they went on to have a looong conversation about the locality, things to do & see, & their chit-chat even included all about ME! (The usual rescue/surrender/well-behaved/delighted with him/he blogs etc … palaver). I behaved very well for the duration. A lovely couple. Something tells me they will return to the area.

Our uplifting (if slightly contradictory) music choice en route home was ‘Fisherman’s Blues’ by The Waterboys. Windows open, wind blowing, straight road ahead… both happy. 🎼🐾

More, and more and more!!

These mornings the temperatures are a wee bit cooler so it seems that the ripples of the water sound clearer. Not that we are beachside every morn these days! Somehow our routine is different than it used to be. Not to worry though. I’m a patient lad and am starting to trust this human of mine more & more each day.

On the days we don’t get to our morning exercise, my excitement actually knows no bounds, because usually it means there’s a surprise coming later in the day.

For instance… we spent time at the harbour near the cliffs a few days ago. The small beach nearby was our first stop for some galloping exercise, followed by some leisurely lead-walking around the piers, past fisherpeople & campers, locals & tourists, boats & cars, dogs and cats.

CATS!! PLURAL!! I strained forcefully on the leash, but all to no avail, so had to content myself with what my human refers to as ‘good behaviour’. Onward we strolled towards the arched entrance to the cliff walk (now newly wheelchair accessible for public toilet purposes). Grandpa was with us that day but he & his super-carer paused on the little bench and did some people-watching by the pier while they waited for us to return.

The scenic beauty of this locale never fails to amaze me. The farmer’s crop on my right as we head off continues to flourish to the edge of the well-defined, springy pathway which has been trodden flat by walkers feet. To my left are sheared escarpments, ridges, rocks & hollows of various depths & dimensions. Always the same (since I’ve been here) yet always appearing varied in their colour & consistency, placement & layout.

It was busy! Lots of comings & goings…we passed walkers, strollers, loungers, fisherpeople, dogs their owners, groups, singletons…all sorts. We came upon a couple who were resting at the path’s edge with their little dog, Belle. (Yikes! Snappy! She didn’t like my waggy tail!).

‘Lovely name’, says my human.

‘We call her that ‘cos she’s our doorbell!’ The gent responded & they all chuckled.

Further along, a group of fisherpeople were returning to base… laden down with equipment, rods & cool boxes.

‘Catch much?’, asked my human.

‘N’ere a bite at all, girl’, was the response. His sad, empty bucket was at my eye level. I could have told her that myself.

‘Mackerel not in so?’, she questioned… but they were gone.

Time to do an about turn & get back to Grandpa. But not before pausing to study the edge-of-the-rock-based, hopeful technique of adults (mostly male) teaching kids (mostly male), all continually casting into the depths in the hope of at least a pollock for supper. Extended family members lay strewn around the flatter rocks close by with liquid refreshments, sandwiches & verbal support. The scent of sausages cooking on a disposable barbecue made me pause momentarily but my human said ‘ Not for you, Brufus’. And on we journeyed.

I’ve two songs to mention today. ‘More & More’ by Joe Dolan to start with, because this new life of mine just keeps on giving. But I also like the idea of ‘Ring My Bell’ by Anita Ward. In honour of the little Belle we met upon a bluff on a glorious August evening when the air surrounded us with contentment. Merely bluffing, she didn’t really mean to snap at me. 🎼🐾

Am I that easy to forget?

I’ve been feeling a bit forlorn these past couple of days since Missy & Hallie left, to be honest. Having the bed all to myself isn’t all it’s cracked up to be πŸ’€ However, I feigned much delight when herself made moves towards the 🚘. A change is as good as a rest as they say & it’s good to be outdoors even if it’s raining.

I spied a new ‘friend’ on the slipway as I arrived and we met half way. His name was Bob & he had the look of a British Bulldog

‘His tail is wagging so they should be fine’, chirped my human delightedly as we converged. (OMG she says that every day to one dog owner or another).

‘Bob doesn’t have a tail to wag’, replied the other lady, laughing.

Meanwhile, us canines were becoming acquainted in a doggie sort of way. I was liking what I smelled. Next thing I know, we’re moving in opposite directions as our humans take control and propel us in a guidance of their own choosing. I gazed longingly at his squat little bottom waddling upwards but had no choice but to follow ‘herself’ downhill!

The whale-like mounds of ocean weed had reduced slightly overnight but we still ran the risk of sinking or sliding. Once I had carried out my business & filled a poop-scoop-bag to the brim, we picked our steps carefully along towards Cove Two. Then!, just at the narrowest junction between the coves, up pops the gorgeous Ollie, a Cockapoo, in the company of his three humans.

‘His tail is wagging so they should be fine’, chirped my human delightedly. (OMG did I mention that she says that at least once every day). They proceeded to chat about rescue/surrender/breeding/crosses/size/temperament/training/freedom…… etc….. before parting company.

Cove Three is where I miss Missy and Hallie most. It’s difficult to muster up enthusiasm for running when I’ve no pal to chase or be chased by. An empty beach hasn’t quite the same appeal as a stick-fishing expedition. Nonetheless, I wandered about the place at a lesser speed than usual & found plenty to exercise my mind. For instance…what the heck happened this rock? Was it by human hand or ocean spray that these holes developed, I wonder?

Maybe Missy or Hallie left a coded message for me? Just then the rain became much heavier & we headed briskly back towards our transport.

Jim Reeves sang us home with ‘Am I that easy to forget?’🎢 And I had tears in my eyes wondering if my doggie companions of the last few weeks have forgotten me altogether πŸ™ 🐾