Let sleeping dogs lie

44751726-a-cartoon-illustration-of-a-beagle-sleeping-and-dreaming- I had a lovely sleep in my favourite armchair at dear Ebony’s house this afternoon.   It was incredibly peaceful, unlike my own house most of the time, as Ebony, her Pack Leader Male and I all had an afternoon snooze in the lounge.  We had all been over-doing things, and needed a rest.  You could have heard a pin drop, other than the occasional snore, as we dozed contentedly.  I do find it irritating when She says things like Fat Chance of A Bldy Afternoon Snooze for Some of Us, as it shows clear lack of understanding of the strain I’m under at times.  For example, the window cleaner has just rung the doorbell, and someone has walked past my house with a labrador, so I’ve had to bark and go ballistic TWICE in the last ten minutes.  This is exhausting.

Yesterday was rather nice, as Lad decided to stay at home for the day so I had some civilised company.  Actually we just stayed in bed and slept all morning, but this was fine by me.  There was the usual stressy leaving home for school/work early in the morning, with Young Lad being told a million times to pack his football kit ready for that afternoon’s match.  They drove off up the road with a sharp list of “football boots? Kit? shinpads?” being barked at him, but unfortunately Young Lad fell silent after the “shinpads?” bit.  Yes, Readers, Young Lad had forgotten his shinpads, so they had to drive back home to get them.  This caused an atmosphere in the car, and is another Time Management issue for Young Lad.  Anyway, after all this shouting and kerfuffle, Gingercat and I went back to sleep.  There was nothing else to do, as all the bins had been moved and doors shut.  When Lad finally surfaced at lunchtime, I decided it was time to get up and joined him downstairs.  Lad had been told to give me a walk, but luckily this wasn’t one of the ridiculous 4 mile power walks that She insists on.  No – Lad took me round the Rec and up to Tesco Express to buy some milk and sweets. Readers, this was a new experience for me.  Lad was unaware of the food shop/hygiene/no dogs rules, and took me INTO Tesco Express!!  Oh it was marvellous, I thought all my Christmases had come at once.  The smells!  Amazingly, none of the staff gently and kindly explained to Lad that dogs aren’t allowed in shops, so She had to tell him, in the “you did WHAT?” kind of way, later in the evening.  Lad now understands fully that he can’t take me into Tesco Express, which is a shame.

Communication was something of a problem here yesterday, Friends.  Young Lad, as you know, has had an extremely busy week on the sporting front, and yesterday had a football match after school.  It had been arranged that He would collect Young Lad from school after the football match at 4.30–4.45pm.  When He arrived at 4.40pm, there was no sign of Young Lad in the school car park;  this meant that some panicky phone calls were in order, before walking round the corner to the football pitch and finding that the game was still in progress.

Well, in a rare moment of generosity I was taken to cricket training last night!  You will remember that I wasn’t taken to the match on Monday as I’m a “pain” and interrupt the socialising, but last night pity was taken on me and I was SO excited when I heard my lead picked up!  What a wonderful evening I had, wandering round and round the pitch, sniffing out bird poo and occasionally digging it out of the grass with my paws.  It was a warm, glorious evening and there was really no need to sit in the bar talking for the first half hour – this was boring and frankly selfish.  There was a sublime moment when I got my lead tangled round a table and She had to unclip me – Readers, I saw my moment and raced out of the door, with She running after me, shouting.  I didn’t get very far, sadly, as there were some crumbs on the grass just near the clubhouse, so She caught up with me quickly.  Still, it was a nice try.

Now, tonight poor Young Lad was supposed to have after-school cricket training and then a match.  Thankfully the latter was cancelled, due to insufficient players, and the former…..well, Young Lad decided he was too tired  after the double whammy of a football match and cricket training yesterday.  To be honest, I don’t blame him, and think too much is expected of Young Lad at times.  It is far better for him to be lying on the sofa under the red fleece blanket watching football on the telly.  Lad has gone to see his Lad friends today, and is on his way back via many trains and buses.  Lad enjoys all these trips on public transport and it is a lovely sunny evening for such an adventure.

I’m a little annoyed with Lad, actually, as he has dobbed me in.  This morning, in between having a nice long lie-in, I did wander round and found a crisp packet or two, and some empty boxes put out for the recycling (or chucked in the back porch, as it is more accurately known.)  I decided to place all these things on the lounge carpet, and then rip them into small pieces which I could then spit all over the shop.  It was fun.  There are still several of these under the dining room table, which rarely gets cleaned under, so nobody will find them for months.  I do feel Lad has been a little disloyal in telling on me, and will be discussing this with him tomorrow.

Do you know, I was only thinking the other day that I haven’t updated you on a couple of things for a while.  Readers, Homeless Guy outside Sainsbury’s hasn’t been there for quite a while now – indeed, he has chosen a new pitch much closer to Costalotta.  This may or may not be a subtle hint; who knows.  He looks rather poorly and She is definitely going to find the time to buy him a coffee and talk to him soon.  But will still go to Dreggs to save the 50p.  The next update is more shocking, and I’m really quite embarrassed about this.  It is June.  Christmas was in December.  The Christmas lights that went round the windows are STILL dumped on a box in Lad’s bedroom, and have never been anywhere near the loft, which is where they are meant to be stored.  I make that 6 months of slovenliness whereby nobody can be bothered to pull down the loft ladder and put the bldy things away.  Readers, do you still have Christmas lights dumped in a bedroom?  Of course you don’t.

Meghan Markle definitely doesn’t still have Christmas lights dumped in a bedroom six months after the event.  Her house is clean, hygienic and doesn’t have dubious stains on the carpets.  I want to live in Nottingham Cottage South Ken, and it’s about time I started thinking about Plan B.  

See you soon,

Russell

 

 

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G’day!

australia_b915348b-000a-42e5-9891-bf2d04f8aceb Yesterday was simply marvellous, Friends, marvellous.  I was visited at home by people that genuinely like and understand dogs.  These people had come all the way from the other side of the world to see me!  Wow, I couldn’t believe it.  All the way from Australia they came, as they wanted to spend time with me.  What an honour.  Pardon?  Well, yes ok they have been to London to go on the London Eye etc, and visited loads of relatives, but the highlight of their visit to England was definitely coming here yesterday.  I’m sure they said so.  And I know for a fact that their dog is allowed to sleep on their bed with no shame or secrecy attached to it – indeed, this is celebrated.  So I had a wonderful day, rolling on my back in the sunshine while my tummy was tickled, and my ears were stroked, and soft cooing noises were made to me.  In fact, Readers, I even showed off a little!  Whilst balancing precariously along my spine on the grass, legs stretched out in an impressive yoga pose, one of The Australians said how long can he stay like that then, and there was some chuckling.  Well. It turned out I could hold this pose for a very long time, such is the strength of my core muscles and abdominals!!  I must have been upside down perfectly balanced on a narrow ridge of bone for a full ten minutes!  How everyone admired me.

Lunch was eaten al fresco, which was rather pleasant I must say, and it was the everlasting picky bits, which seems to be about the only “luncheon” She can ever think of.  At least there was no Chocolate Baileys Cheesecake this time, which did make a refreshing change.  Lad was here all day yesterday as his exams have now  finished bldypraisebe.   Lad tried hard to remove a Fish Fingers box from my mouth, after I had dragged it out of the recycling bag and run under the bushes with it.  Lad failed to remove it from my mouth, and it was one of the Australians who used something akin to the Heimlich manouevre, and stood behind me, grabbed the box and removed it successfully.  I didn’t see that coming, I have to admit.  Australian removal techniques seem to be more efficient.   However, if my family think they will try this, I will still have their hand off.

Earlier in the morning, I had a lovely walk at the river although we still couldn’t go up in the woods due to the ongoing camping holiday.  She says it will  be months before I can go back up there.  I was  thinking to myself that the Bastard Swans haven’t been down there for ages – I haven’t seen them now for months.  What a terrible shame.  Dear Chuck was down there, with his silky coat shining in the sun, and we spent a while inspecting each other’s rear ends as usual.  I would have preferred a slow, leisurely walk with plenty of sniffing, but oh no, we had to march fast as there was a lot to bldy do and we needed to crack on.  Readers, you can imagine the tune to which we marched round Far Field.  Yes indeed.  Something by Ted Drearen, or whatever he’s called; one of his rockier songs, obviously, as you can’t walk fast to a ballad. 

I was rather disappointed last night, Friends, to find that I wasn’t allowed to go to Young Lad’s cricket match.  Now, you know how I love walking round the cricket ground over and over and over again for a couple of hours, but no. This was deemed to be too annoying, as it means that you can’t sit and chat to people when  you have a Beagle on the end of the lead, barking every time you stand still. Standing still talking to people HAS to be the most boring activity ever, and yet She manages to do it for hours!  It’s so dull.  Anyway, I was left at home on the pretext that being “on teas duty” meant nobody would be able to supervise me.  What nonsense.  “Teas duty,” my foot.  How hard can it be – cups of squash, a plate of biscuits and some cake.    He, She and Young Lad all spent the evening at cricket, and I was left home alone with Lad, to watch the England match.  It was quite good but on the whole I slept through it.

Young Lad struggled to wake up early this morning, and to be honest this is only going to get worse this week.  Poor Young Lad has 2 cricket matches, a football match, and cricket training all in the space of four days.  This is an appalling amount of physical activity for Young Lad, and I worry about him.  Admittedly he is happily lying on the sofa at the moment in a very relaxed way, stuffing breadsticks, but I fear he will have wasted away to nothing by the end of this week.  Poor Young Lad.  Lad, on the other hand, is enjoying a life of leisure for one week, and we have the house to ourselves as everyone is at school/work.  I won’t tell you what we get up to.  What goes on tour….  

Lad made a late decision, today, to go out with his friends, so I was dropped off at Ebony’s house mid-afternoon.  I was disappointed with this, as I only had a couple of hours there – but this was enough to eat lots of bird seed, so there will be an interesting texture to my comfort breaks again tomorrow.  I also had a walk over the Rec with Ebony, and found myself running – yes, running! – at full pace, and really quite enjoying myself!  How light-hearted and energetic I was this afternoon.  Maybe it was the birdseed.  That said, I am very tired now and lying upside down in my chair with my eyes tightly shut.  He looked a little like this, on the sofa, just before dinner, albeit He wasn’t upside down.  This is due to poor He working ridiculously long hours at the moment – He and I have really been pushing ourselves too much.

Well, I can only hope that Lad stays at home with me tomorrow, and doesn’t make a last minute decision to abandon me in favour of his friends.  Plus there’s cricket training and I will be furious if I don’t get taken this time – there is bound to be lots of fresh bird poo around.

See you soon,

Russell

And your point is?

IMG_0089 Yes, I did empty the revoltingly full bathroom bin round the landing and Lad’s bedroom.  Yes it was spectacularly over-full after Lad’s three fellow Lad friends had slept here for the night, but what of it?  I was bored, for the forty minutes I  had no company this weekend, and had no choice but to throw tissues, toothpaste tubes, cotton buds, sweet wrappers and toilet roll cardboard tubes all over the shop.  It was a shocking mess, I’ll grant you, but it was fun.  If I hadn’t been left on my own, while they went into town to buy Fathers’ Day cards etc, the problem wouldn’t have arisen. So I can hardly be held accountable.

Anyway, I had a marvellous time with Lad and his friends, who against all expectations managed to navigate the late night trains and find their way back from the end-of-exams party in one piece.  As predicted, they all slept in the lounge on an array of mattresses and the sofa, and there was a huge pile of snacks on the table.  It smelled marvellous.  Unfortunately I wasn’t allowed to sleep with them, as I would have whined to go out for a comfort break at 6am and they might only just have fallen asleep, so this would have been unfair.  However, when there was still no sign of life from the lounge at ten o’clock the next morning, She sniggered that it was time to “send in the dog”, so the door was opened for me to run in and climb all over the sleeping bodies.  They enjoyed this.  So did I, as there was a plethora of Pringles crumbs and chocolate in between the beds.  I hoovered it all up.  Now, the plan had been for Lad and his friends to go up to London, in order to buy lots of lovely over-priced designer clothes to wear now that school has finished until September.  However, Lad and his friends were still lounging on their beds  at lunchtime, happily playing on the Xbox and eating a cooked breakfast, and so it was decided that nobody could be bothered to go shopping.  I would have liked the cooked breakfast but nobody offered me any; though to be fair, I did end up with a miniscule piece of over-cooked bacon that had dried up.  It wasn’t great.

I was sad when Lad’s friends finally headed off to the station, as I had enjoyed their company.  This was partly why I had to pull everything out of Young Lad’s school bag, and trash the bathroom bin, while She, Lad and Young Lad had gone to the Card Factory.  Young Lad’s school bag didn’t have any food in, which was disappointing, but I chucked his maths equipment and Science book round the study anyway.  It was something to do.

Then I had a marvellous walk at the river, in the afternoon. Many, many of my friends were down there,  including Rocco the oh so inspirational three-legged dog.  Now, Friends, there was a rather unfortunate moment for Rocco, as he was accompanied by some children who were on scooters.  Unfortunately, one of the children mis-timed their stopping ability on the scooter, and crashed into Rocco.  As Rocco only has three legs, it’s hard to balance at the best of times, and once a scooter and child collides with you, it’s nigh on impossible.    Rocco was a very good sport, though, and rolled around on the ground quite happily for a while.  He truly is inspirational.  We went over the bridge and into Top Field, which made a pleasant change as we haven’t been up there for a while, due to the people in their white  caravans and transits, who appear to be having a nice camping holiday.    We walked to the top of Top Field, but once we realised they were still having their camping holiday, we very swiftly turned round and came back down.

Today has been busy.  Poor He had to go into work at silly o’clock again this morning, and I feel very sorry for He.  Especially as it was Father’s Day.  The good thing was that he returned mid-morning, and a Family Brunch of bacon rolls was had, with everyone sitting down in a civilised way with mugs of tea.  She didn’t have a bacon roll, of course, due to the calories factor, but joined in with the mugs of tea.  I could have had her share of the bacon rolls, but nobody offered me one. They smelled divine.  Then He went off to play cricket and Young Lad was told to get on with his homework.  Young Lad needed this repeated several times over the next half hour, and I felt very sorry for him because he misunderstood the instruction.  Young Lad thought “get on with yourbldy homework” actually meant, “just write down the list of homework, then faff around on your phone for the rest of the morning.”    Poor Young Lad.  This was an easy mistake.  Anyway, after much shouting and general tension, Young Lad understood that he actually had to do his homework, rather than writing down what the tasks were.  Readers, I felt even more sorry for Young Lad when he was told that his Maths work on Volume was DISGUSTINGLY  scruffy, and he was not bldy well handing that in, the shame of it.  Poor Young Lad had to write it out again.  Young Lad was close to tears, and so was I to be honest.

This afternoon things looked up a little, as She, Lad and Young Lad took me down to the cricket club to watch He playing.  Now this was unprecendented, as Lad hasn’t set foot in the cricket club for quite a long time now, and She was fully prepared for a battle over this.  But no!  Lad quite understood that it was Fathers’ Day and he WOULD be coming down to the bldy cricket club to watch his Father play cricket for an hour.  This was marvellous, Friends, as Lad and I rolled around on the grass together and had some special bonding time.  I think Lad forgot to watch the cricket, but that’s because he was so busy playing with me.  It was lovely.  Young Lad forgot to watch his Father playing cricket, too, as Young Lad was busy practising in the nets with his friends.  Still, it’s the thought that counts.

Tonight there has been a lot of baking as Young Lad has a cricket match tomorrow night, and it’s our turn to make the cakes.  However, as usual there was an appalling error of judgement and not enough cake mixture was made for 30 cakes.  This wasn’t helped by Lad constantly trying to eat it.  Some mild swearing was heard, once the penny dropped there were only 20 cakes made and this is not the same as the total of two cricket teams plus the coaches, plus Lad and Young Lad who will want one.  So the mixer had to be plugged in again.  Readers, this is shoddy organisation and it really isn’t that hard to calculate 11 plus 11 plus a few more.

Rumour has it that I might be receiving some visitors tomorrow!!  Lad has been paid to cut the grass, do the hoovering and empty the airing cupboard.  This is partly because She is busy working on a Secret Project at the moment, and partly because Lad’s recent clever money-making scheme actually lost money last week, and he’s skint.  Visitors!!! How exciting, I can’t wait.  Plus a cricket match in the evening, which means eating bird poo round the boundary.  Happy days, Friends, Happy days.

Bye for now,

Russell

Yogurt

IMG-20180615-WA0000-1 (1)Here I am, Readers, shoving my snout right the way into a yogurt pot this morning.  I was determined to clean it out completely, and this necessitated putting my entire nose in so that I could lick the bottom of it.  This was at dear Ebony’s house, where I spent the morning while everyone was at school/work.  To  be honest, I couldn’t wait to get there again, and refused to look back as I sprinted out of my own house.  I spent an extremely happy morning there, until Lad arrived home from school at lunchtime to collect me.

Yes, the day has arrived.  Lad has finished his final GCSE exam and has officially finished school until September.  This is Marvellous News all round, for everyone, as we are heartily sick of all the revision, and the piles of post it notes and index cards all over the house.  Well done, Lad, you have worked hard.  Not in an organised or efficient way at all, but definitely hard. Tonight I’ve had a lot of fun, as three of Lad’s friends arrived here as they are all going to a celebratory party.  I lay on the sofa with them while they all sat around chatting and laughing, and they made such a fuss of me.  It is so nice to be appreciated for a change.  I like Lad’s friends as they seem to be permanently eating here, which is marvellous on the begging for snacks or dropped food front.  There is a Fantastic Spread of complete rubbish on the table for them, for when they return from the party.  This consists of crisps, more crisps, chocolate, biscuits, more crisps and loads of drink.  What this lacks in nutrition, it makes up for in enjoyment value. I would certainly enjoy it, if anyone turns their back for long enough.  There is a small chance that I’ll be able to sleep in the lounge with the four Lads and the Fantastic Spread tonight – cross your fingers, Readers.  Rumour has it there might be a Cooked Breakfast for them tomorrow, too!  I do wish Lad’s friends could come over more often, as someone is clearly trying to impress them.  We all know this level of hospitality is rarely seen here.

Pack Leader is back home, having been away for the night with her dear friend Chelseagirl.  For some reason they went all the way to London to see Ted Drearan or whatever he’s called – I fail to see why anyone would go to this effort, to see one man play his guitar for two hours.  Admittedly, eighty thousand people felt this was a good way to spend an evening, but really!  There is often a man playing his guitar outside the pub in the market place up the road – it would be far cheaper to stand and listen to him.  It can’t be that different from watching Ted/Ed or whatever his name is – a ballad is a ballad, surely.  People are strange at times.  Anyway, Chelseagirl and She had a lovely time pretending they are a lot younger than they are, and singing wildly whilst waving their phone torches in the air.  (Well, Chelseagirl couldn’t find her torch on her phone but you get the idea.)

Hopefully all this ridiculous behaviour and incessant going out for meals is now at an end.  I’m fed up with being neglected and other people having to look after my welfare.

Young Lad has had a busy week at school and is very tired tonight.  He has decided to “take it easy” this weekend, which is no different from any other weekend in Young Lad’s life, and will involve a fair amount of time spent on the sofa.  Young Lad has been asked how much homework he has, and he very cleverly answered this non-verbally with a shrug.  The shrug conveyed two messages:  I don’t know, and I don’t give a monkey’s, in one simple movement.  Well done, Young Lad.  In all honesty, there is a lot of football on telly over the weekend, due to the World Cup having started, and this will obviously take priority. 

Poor He has to go to work very early tomorrow morning, and has promised He will try not to wake anyone up at 6am – especially the four Lads in the lounge who will only just have fallen asleep, after spending the night eating snacks. I rather hope He doesn’t wake me up either, as I will also be asleep after an exhausting  day of socialising. 

Well, this is rather a short blog tonight, Readers, as time is getting on and  another episode of the Scandi Nordi drama noir thing is about to start on BBC2.  It makes a change from Ambulance, 24 Hours in A & E, or GPs  Behind Closed Doors, I suppose.

See you soon,

 

Russell

Double standards

IMG_0020 Please look at this, Readers.  Unbelievable.  In this diagram, Gingercat is clearly trying to pull a plum tomato off Lad’s plate.  Gingercat was actually after the pepperoni pizza, but the plum tomato was in the way.  Now, ask yourselves this.  If I had been trying to pull food off their plates, what would have happened?  Would they have laughed and said quick get the camera/he’s so funny/oh just look at him etc etc etc?  No of course they wouldn’t.  I would have been shouted at, sent to my chair and told I’m naughty.  Does this seem fair to you?  Utter favouritism.

Well it’s rather late to be writing tonight, but there has been a lot of rushing around what with work and cricket training.  Don’t expect this to be up to much as She’s watching 24 Hours in A & E at the same time, so won’t be concentrating.  I fail to see the attraction of all this tense medical drama – last night we had to watch Ambulance on catch up, and it would be so nice one day to watch something that doesn’t have that serious bit at the end, telling you what happened to all the people featured.  Give me strength.  Young Lad has just headed to bed, exhausted after a day at school, walking into town with his friend afterwards to buy a Coke in the pound shop and use the toilet at Costalotta, then playing cricket in his friend’s garden before an hour and a half of cricket training.  Poor Young Lad.  Even the syrup pudding specially made for him tonight won’t replace all those calories burned.  Lad is on the Xbox – not normally allowed on a school night – but he has no exams tomorrow so a day at home revising is in order.  Thus a chill -out on the Xbox tonight is permitted.   In the kitchen He is emptying the dishwasher, but I’m not sure He’s found the bowl I ran down the garden with earlier; the one with the syrup pudding mixture in.  Or the crisp packet I’ve thrown under the apple tree, or the Shreddies box I’ve torn up by the rose bushes.

It’s been a nice day today, as I was dropped at dear Pippa’s house at 7.30am for daycare.  This was fun, and I couldn’t wait to get in the door.  I’d had a bad night, Readers, as I needed a comfort break at 3am and another one at 5am.  I was exhausted from this broken sleep, but I didn’t moan about it unlike some people.  Then Pippa’s Pack Leader brought me home, once Lad was back from school and I had a peaceful afternoon with him.  Lad was a little cross with me last night, as I had left a present in his bed for him.  Actually in his bed, under the duvet.  It was a bone.  I had dug and dug, pulling his duvet into all sorts of weird shapes, to ensure the bone was buried right underneath it.  Lad had no idea it was there until he got into bed.  This was a surprise.

Well, I can’t believe it is nearly here at last!  Are you ready for this?   The LAST EXAM is on Friday!  Yes, after four weeks of intense testing and what feels like three years of revision, Lad has nearly finished his GCSEs.  I can feel you sighing with relief from here, and you’re right, it has been remarkably dull.  The thing is, Lad and his friends will need to celebrate the end of the exams, so of course there is a House Party to attend on Friday night.  This means a nice late-night pick-up by She or He, and to add to the occasion, Lad has asked if his friends can “crash” here for the night.  I will enjoy this – last time they crashed here, there were four large Lads of Lad’s age sleeping in the lounge, plus me.  It smelled very special in there in the morning.  Lad has been told he is welcome to have them to stay, but he we have to do the cleaning beforehand.  Lad is thinking about this.  He did say that the cleanliness of the house isn’t important. but after a sharp look from She, he re-thought this.  Lad will be hoovering and cleaning the bathrooms before his friends can set foot through the front door.

So, Lad is here all day tomorrow which is marvellous, as he won’t expect much of me.  He has been told he will be taking me for a long walk, but we all know what the reality will be.  Young Lad has cricket after school, and we’re hoping he remembers all his kit this time.  He will be collecting Young Lad after after-school cricket, as She won’t be here.  Yes, in yet another incident of abandonment, we are being left by ourselves tomorrow night while She goes to see Ed Sheeran with Chelseagirl.  I ask you.  There is no need to go all the way to Wembley for this; you just download some music on your phone, even I know this.  And they will see bugger all from the very top of Wembley Stadium (cheap seats of course).  Oh well, there is nowt as queer as folks.  I’ll stay here and watch Chicago PD with Young Lad.

I’m hoping the Aussie relatives come up to see me one day next week, as I would very much like to see them. They were nice, and understand troubled dogs.  It’s on the List Of Things To Do,  to find a date that is convenient.  Nobody will consult me, of course.  The List of Things To Do never seems to get any shorter.  There is an efficiency issue here.

It’s recycling this week, Readers.  This means lots of recycling bags put out, full of boxes and packages that contained food.  I like Recycling week. It’s particularly fun to wait until He has painstakingly tied up the sacks, then rip a big hole and drag it all round the garden.  It makes everyone laugh.

As I thought, someone’s oxygen levels have dropped dangerously low and that is causing far too much distraction, so I’m off for a kip.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

 

 

Carvery

carvery_logoI’m fed up with it.  This is the second time they have been out to a carvery,  in the last three months.  On neither occasion have I been taken along, and you all know full well how much I would enjoy a carvery.  The huge, puffy Yorkshire puds, the tender beef and crisp pork crackling, the thick gravy……. it’s utterly selfish, of course, and completely typical of them.  Oh no, I get farmed out yet again to poor Ebony’s long-suffering family, as I can’t be trusted to stay at home by myself.  Well, Readers, I heard some discussion of yesterday’s carvery meal, and it seems the puddings weren’t “all that”, which serves them right.  There was moaning that a nice sticky toffee pudding, or cheesecake with a proper biscuit base was needed, but sadly lacking.  Good.  Hope the bland yellow unidentifiable custardy type dessert choked them.

So yes, another day at dear, dear Ebony’s house where I had company and love in abundance.  Ebony had relatives round, of the child type, and they all adored me too.  I really wasn’t that fussed about going home, in all honesty, and it was only the slight chance that I might be able to wangle a second dinner that made this bearable.  I didn’t wangle a second dinner, as it happens, as Ebony’s Pack Leader made a point of saying that I’d been fed.  And raided the dishwasher.  And had some ham and chicken.  I made sure my own family knew about this all evening by the variety of smells emitted from my backside.

Well,  I’m sure it was all very nice, seeing the Aussie relatives and Funnygit with his family.  As an added bonus, young J (cast your minds back, Readers;  I started the blog when poor J was having nasty things done to him at somewhere called the Marsden) was out for this lunch  too, with his Pack Leader and family. It all sounds simply lovely, drinking wine in the bar and basking in the sun with coffees. I know for a fact that there was a large grassy area on which I could have been walked, as this is where the younger members of the luncheon party went to play football, but no, of course, it wasn’t ‘dog-friendly.’ I’m not sure it was football-friendly either, but that didn’t stop them.  Or ripped-jeans friendly, come to think of it, but  even that wasn’t a factor.   

In a remarkable show of punctuality, Lad and Young Lad were both ready to leave home at 10.20am, which was only twenty minutes after the official leaving home time of 10am.    This, then, incurred only twenty minutes of shouting bldy hurry up and whatdoyoumean you’re still in the bldyshower  and do you have anybldyidea what the bldymotorway will be like and so on and so forth.   Gingercat and I slept through this as it was very dull.  Lad  had really risen to the occasion of a nice family lunch out, by eschewing his hideous Adidas sliders for some slightly less hideous Nike trainers, which made the designer ripped jeans look almost quite smart.  Not one to be outdone on the brand names front these days, Young Lad was head to toe in Nike Airmax.  Sometimes She sighs wistfully and remembers the days that Lad and Young Lad could be dressed in clothes from Woolworths.  (Yes!  Aren’t we showing our age!  But don’t you miss it, Readers?  You know you do.  Pickamix, garden shears, records and lip gloss all under one roof.)

I digress.  Today they have all been at work/school, so quelle surprise, I’ve been to daycare at dear, dear Pippa’s house.  This was marvellous as I haven’t been there for a week or so, and Pippa and I lay in the sunshine after our walk. Lad had an exam this morning (poxy Biology) and was home at lunchtime, which was rather nice.  He relaxed for “an hour” – he says – on the Xbox, before cracking on with more revision, as tomorrow is CRAP.  The morning’s exam is Maths- The Calculator Paper, which makes life harder not easier as one would expect, as it is all do to with the cosine rule etc.  Stay awake.  Then, after crappy Maths, it’s even crappier History in the afternoon, which is 150 pages of the Cold War.  Lad is on page 23 as we speak.  Oh dear.  Poor Lad.  Lad has even said he might have to miss the lunchtime trip to MacDonalds tomorrow, to stay in school and try to get through the other 127 pages before the exam.

Readers, I fear that Young Lad’s organisational skills have not picked up much from last week.  Last night he was told to check his cricket bag was packed for after-school cricket today.  This morning he was told to check again, and make sure he had his PE kit too.  When they drove near his school this morning, Young Lad asked whether She had put the cricket bag in the car.  No, She hadn’t, he was told calmly and nicely with no edge in the voice at all.  Oh dear, Poor Young Lad.  He had indeed checked that everything was in his cricket bag, and he had indeed packed his PE kit.  Unfortunately he made the schoolboy error of not putting the cricket bag in the car, and walking straight past it when he left the house.  Young Lad wasn’t allowed to participate in Hard Ball Cricket at school tonight, as he didn’t have his protective gear, and had to play soft ball cricket with some other hopeless cases from Year 8 who had also failed to bring the right things.  Maybe this will be a lesson to him, but I very much doubt it.

To be fair, though, he has found the list of ingredients for Food Technology tomorrow, and there was only a minor dash to Sainsbury’s tonight in order to buy butter (have  you seen how expensive butter is these days?!) and golden syrup, as the bit left in the tin in the cupboard was rather crusty and not really fit for purpose.  Though of course, it will be used quite happily here.  Tomorrow’s Food Technology is Ginger Biscuits, and I’m looking forward to these immensely.

Tomorrow She is actually not working, and I might have a decent walk down at the river in the morning.  However, we will have to be careful as there are some, er, now how can I put this in a politically correct way, er, visitors in the field the other side of the river.  These visitors turned up last night in some large white vehicles, towed by rather expensive cars, and they appear to be having a nice camping holiday.  They have lots of dogs .  And some horses.  And to be honest, our drive is in rather a shoddy state of repair so it won’t come as any surprise if one of the visitors knocks the door and asks if we would like them to re-surface it.

So, Readers, I will let you know how Lad gets on with his Crappy day tomorrow, and whether the ginger biscuits were worth the £1.60 for a packet of butter, or whether Flora would have sufficed.

Bye for now,

Russell

Smiling

IMG_0035 This is a picture of me smiling.  One of her colleagues asked recently whether I ever smile,  which I thought was quite rude, but there you go.  As you can see, I am clearly smiling in this picture and this has nothing to do with gravitational pull exerting force on my face and pulling it into a smiley expression.  I frequently lie upside down like this of an evening, smiling.  To be honest, I don’t have a lot to smile about, which  you will know if  you’ve been reading the blog for any length of time.

Today has been a case in point.  Lovelyneighbourontheright had to go away for the day, so we have had their Cockapoo puppy here all day.  It has annoyed me. Admittedly it has stopped jumping on my head and trying to play with me, but still it follows me around like a lost soul, picking up things that don’t belong to it such as flip-flops and socks.  So I haven’t had much to smile about today.  I’ve had two walks and plenty of company so I suppose I shouldn’t moan, but I will.  Lad has worked incredibly hard today, from 10.30am until 6pm on revision.  This is a very good effort, and means he deserves to shout and scream for four hours on the Xbox tonight.  Poor Lad.  Much of this gargantuan effort is due to them  being Out All Day tomorrow, which means Lad will get no work done at all.  This is selfish of them.  There is some large family gathering for a nice lunch in a place far away, and I’m rather annoyed not to be going as the Australian Relatives are going to be there, and I got on very well with them last time.  The venue is “not dog friendly,” plus the inevitable two hours of heavy traffic on the M25 each way will be unpleasant.  I’m being farmed out to people yet again for the day.  Thankfully Ebony’s Pack Leader has said I can go there – really, I don’t know why I bother coming home between visits. 

It is very peaceful here at the moment.  Lad has gone to have a shower after his efforts, and Young Lad has fallen asleep on his bed.  This is due to a heavy workload today.  Young Lad not only put away three huge bags of food shopping, all in the right place for once, but he has also emptied the airing cupboard!!  Yes, he sorted everyone’s clothes into piles and placed them on everyone’s beds, even managing to fold up the towels and attempt to fold up the sheets.  This last bit didn’t work quite as well, but he has short arms.  But really, quite a supreme effort from Young Lad, and when you consider he has also completed three pieces of homework, you can see why he’s needed to take a nap.  One of these homework tasks was a Science spelling test.  Now, In Science Young Lad has been learning about reproduction, and the spelling test on was words to do with this.  A computerised American voice would say a word, such as FERTILISATION, and then Young Lad had to type the correct spelling into the laptop.  Readers, just stop for a moment and think which kinds of words are generally used in the Reproduction topic.  How I was meant to get any sleep this afternoon, with the laptop shouting out PENIS!  or VAGINA! I really don’t know.  There must  be better ways of doing this task.  TESTES!

But right now it is wonderfully quiet.  The patio doors are open and there is much birdsong from the trees.  A family of blue tits has been frequenting the bird table lately, which is all very well but they are rather small, and don’t knock the bread and stuff all over the shop, like the stupid collared doves do. I like it when it’s quiet like this, and God Knows it doesn’t happen often.  Poor He has been at work since silly o’clock this morning, and won’t be home till late.  He will be very tired, especially as He had a late night last night.  In fact, Readers, we all did.  This was due to yet more shoddy parenting and selfishness.  He had a party to attend in a town far away, so He wasn’t here. Then She went out with some friends, to socialise, so She wasn’t here.  Poor Young Lad was left on his own ALL EVENING in the lounge, to lie on the sofa and watch TV.  Yes he enjoys this, but that’s not the point.  I did my best to look after him, but was unable to stay awake.  Lad was theoretically in charge, but as Lad was in the other room screaming at the Xbox for four hours, this is debatable.  To be fair, Lad did  wander into the lounge on an hourly  basis (roughly)  to check that we were all still alive, but this is hardly good parenting.  And to leave a huge bag of Wispa bites, a tube of Pringles and some sugar-free cloudy lemonade is no recompense for proper adult supervision.  It’s very poor.

I had a nice time at dear Pippa’s house yesterday, while everyone was at work/school.  Pippa was extremely pleased to see me, and I showed a lot of interest in her Pack Leader’s cheese sandwich at lunchtime.  Now you might think I’d had enough cheese the other day to last me a lifetime, but I barely remember that a day or two later.  Readers, I pushed my luck a little today, and started barking for my dinner at 1.15pm.  As you know, my dinner time is 4pm, but I thought I’d give it a go today and see how quickly they caved in.  It took twenty minutes of whining and silly barks, for them to cave in.  I had half my dinner just after 1.30pm.  Then I repeated the whining and barking at 3pm and had the other half.  Then we went for a long walk, and I asked for my dinner at 4.30pm and had the other half.  I think I did quite well this afternoon and they are rubbish at maths.

Well, it’s time for their dinner which tonight is yet another frozen processed affair of fish fingers and chips.  They did have lots of salad for lunch, so it is deemed appropriate to eat rubbish for dinner.  I’m looking forward to this evening as it’s a cuddle on the sofa type night, with She and Young Lad, as they watch the new season of Chicago PD (yep, another one).  That’s if Young Lad ever wakes up from his nap – I feel he has overdone things today.  I have, too.

Time for a kip.

See you soon,

Russell