Friday, 8 March 2013

Z calls a Halti

Phil, Amelie and I took Ben for a walk on the marshes today, while Toby had a nap and Lisa kept a watchful eye, or possibly took the opportunity for a well-earned rest.  I made the mistake of not putting on Ben's Halti and he was quite overexcited and pulled hard.  I could barely manage him.  However, once we arrived on the field and I let him off his lead, he had a wonderful time.

There was a swan relaxing on the water near the opposite bank to the cattle's watering hold and Ben was quite interested.  I was quite anxious, because I know how tricky swans can be, and Ben plunged cheerily into the water - but only to paddle, he didn't go out of his depth.  He ran around for quite some time after that, then found an area where the farmer had taken a tractor and the ground was quite churned up.  He loved wallowing in the mud.

I looked at this dog, covered in mud, wet through and blissfully happy, and I felt happy myself. This is what a dog's life should be, I thought.  He's a retriever, after all, running round the fields and going into the water are natural to him.  Amelie wondered how I'd catch him to put his lead on and I assured her he'd come when I called.  Before that, he went through another stream and washed most of the mud off and then we set off for home.

There's a beck that runs between our garden and our further field (which is known as Humpy's Meadow) and he decided to plunge into that too. Startled, Phil let go of the lead.  I was just getting that sorted out when Ben had a good shake.  The river water doesn't taste *that* bad, but I still spat several times.

After putting him in the porch, where I rubbed him down with a towel, we went to visit the chickens.  One had just laid an egg and clucked obligingly.  Another ate out of my hand, the Sage picked up a black hen for Amelie to stroke and she was able to find three eggs to take back to the house.  So she has learned a fair bit about living in the country.  Phil and Lisa have discovered that we're even more peculiar than I portray us as here.  

8 comments:

mig said...

Obviously you've been needing a dog very badly. If I was looking at a mud-soaked retriever, happy isn't exactly how I'd feel!

martina said...

It all sounds so wonderful! But then, you know I love dogs as much as you do.

Rog said...

Amelie must have been wide eyed at such an adventure. Sounds like appearing in her own story book.

John Greenwood said...

That's what Labs were put here for!
Country folk aren't peculiar, it's the opposite!

Phil Gardner said...

Let's face it, we already knew you had a stuffed leopard on your landing, so you could never be that much more peculiar than we anticipated.

Anyhoo, we're now home safely, and had a lovely time, so thank you (and the Sage) very much. I can even provide a photo to illustrate this blog post:

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-eAbPQV7sgls/UTtqxRYpVPI/AAAAAAAANn4/PDwKzjISC7E/s1600/Ben+Swan.jpg

I'm off now to try and write one of my own which won't attract the attention of the local police...

Phil Gardner said...

Oh, I see Blogger comments don't automatically make links clickable. Let me try that again with a bit of HTML...

Click here for the photo.

Phil Gardner said...

Am I going slightly mad here? I'm sure I posted a comment prior to that last one..? I may have to go and have a lie down...

Z said...

I think like a dog, Mig. Martina and John, he was doing what came naturally, wasn't he?

Amelie is adorable and was so adaptable. She took everything in her stride and often came to chat to me while her mum and dad were busy with Toby.

Thanks, Phil - that was the point at which he decided not to jump in, but to wade from the shallow end. Your first comment went to spam, oddly enough.