Ludicrous

long-journey-clipart__k10670235 I cannot begin to tell you, Readers,  for how many miles I’ve been dragged this weekend.  It really is unacceptable.  Yesterday I was taken with She and Young Lad to meet Young Lad’s friend, their Cockapoo and Pack Leader and we went for a walk to a pub.  This seemed like an excellent idea to begin with, but what nobody had discussed with me was that it would take an hour to walk to the pub, and the same back again.  This is TWO of hours of fairly sharp walking pace along a track.  It was completely exhausting.  Yes, it was nice sitting outside in the sunshine at the pub having a drink, but that is not the point.  At the very least we should have got a taxi back home.  It was FIVE MILES in total!

So of course I slept like a log last night and really needed that lie-in this morning.  You would have thought that any walks today would be more sensible in nature, but no.  She dragged me out this afternoon needing to burn off some stress or God knows what, and we went not just to Top Field, but to Top, Top Field then round Top Field then up to Far Field and all the way home.  Utterly ridiculous.  I was on my knees by the end of it.  Nobody considers my welfare.

Well apart from the absurd distance, the walk yesterday was in fact quite pleasant.  It was a new area to me, and there were plenty of countryside smells to interest me plus a strange number of flattened squirrels on the path.  This was odd, Readers, as it was simply a footpath and therefore no vehicles passed along it’s entire length.  I wondered to myself what on earth was flattening the squirrels, but could not find an answer.  I can only assume they are suicidal and throw themselves out of the trees from a great height.  I tried to roll in a couple of the more ripe bodies but was pulled sharply away and didn’t get to eat them, either.  Another interesting occurrence was the odd gunshot or two.  Blow me down, this kept me on my toes!  It appears the farmer was out shooting and it seemed to be jolly close to the footpath.  This made me cross as farmers are not allowed to shoot near footpaths in case there are small children on bikes, but this farmer had a cavalier attitude towards everyone’s safety.  We didn’t actually see the farmer but there was a little old man on a bike, and he may well have been concealing a fold-up shotgun in his shopping bag, so the friend we were with stopped this man and accused him of illegally shooting too close to a footpath.   He didn’t seem to know what we were talking about and wobbled off but well done, I say, for firm citizenship.  We can’t let the blighters get away with it.

Come to think of it, the mystery of the flattened squirrels might be less of a mystery now.

Anyway, we carried on and finally reached the pub where I lay down for a much needed sleep.  I perked up a little after this, and on the way back I found a dead animal in the ditch – the jury’s out as to whether it was a mouse/vole/rat or bird such was the level of decomposition – but I grabbed it and ran off.  She gave chase and was shrieking ‘biscuit’ at me, but the rancid corpse in my mouth was way tastier so I ran away and ate it.  Nice.

It was a very pleasant evening, after all that, as He was out and Lad had gone off to the town far away again to see his friends as Lad hadn’t seen them for 17 hours and needed to catch up with them.  So it was just Young Lad and She on the sofa for dinner, arguing over whether to watch a Henry Trotter film, or Strictly Come Dancing.  Henry Trotter won on this occasion, and with the heating on low and a candle lit, all was very peaceful and cosy.  I was in a very, very heavy sleep, Readers, when Gingercat did that annoying thing of digging his claws into my chair with a scratchy sound – it frightened the life out of me, and I jumped up with a high-pitched yelpbark thing.  I meant to sound deep and menacing as I thought it was an intruder, but it came out effeminate and scared.  I had to sit on Young Lad’s lap for protection.

Today has been the usual dull Sunday of housework and homework.  I tend to stay in my chair and ignore all the shouting and moaning that goes on.  To give him credit, Young Lad has completed four pieces of homework today, and they weren’t easy, Friends!  No indeed.  For music Young Lad had to listen to Gustav Holst’s ‘Jupiter’ and work out what the very first and second instruments were.  This was tricky. Then he had to think of some Italian terms to describe the tempo and listen to how it changed throughout the entire bldy seven minutes thirty-five seconds.  Now I don’t know if you’ve ever listened to Gustav Holst’s ‘Jupiter’ but there is a lot of very brash brass instrument playing and it just gets LOUDER and LOUDER. It got on my nerves, to be frank. I was very relieved when the bldy seven minutes thirty-five seconds was up.

Lad has been doing some Philosophy this afternoon.  He has written an essay about two different types of wall insulation.  I kid you not.  Lad has written this in the style of a philosophical debate, considering the concept of utilitarianism.  About wall insulation.  Lad is very, very clever and we should not underestimate him or say “are you taking the piss?”

On my ridiculously long walk today in Top, Top field, I rolled in something dead.  Thus I had streaks of pinky brown all down my back and under my neck.  I was shouted at and scrubbed down rather roughly with a flannel and some shampoo in the garden.  This was uncaring, and you would have thought a warm comforting bath might have been better.  But due to the five bldy loads of washing and the ruddy school uniforms to iron not to mention the blasted raspberry bushes to cut down and bastard hoovering to do, there was no time for a comforting bath.  Yet again my needs are bottom of the list.

Well here begins another week.  I’ve no idea what’s going on – I just settle into a routine and then working hours change and I’m left very confused.  The gist of it seems to be that I’ll mostly be at dear Pippa and dear Ebony’s houses yet again which suits me fine.  So long as Ebony stays in the small bed and lets me have the big one, as I am the guest.

Golly what an exhausting weekend.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

 

Gloomy

IMG-20180928-WA0000  Readers, I was very anxious today.  There I was having a perfectly pleasant day at dear Ebony’s house, when Ebony’s Pack Leader put us both in the back of the car.  This was out of our usual routine and rather worrying.  When I am put in the back of a car, I immediately assume I’m being taken to the Evil Vet, as that is normally what happens.  And then my anal glands are squeezed so you can see my reluctance.

As it happens, Ebony’s Pack Leader drove us somewhere different for our lovely walk, but I wasn’t to know this  so I looked very gloomy all the way there in the car.  It was only once we were out of the car and bounding around the fields that I cheered up.

Anyway let’s go back a little.  Yesterday I had a lovely day at Ebony’s house and wasn’t taken out in the car, so it was altogether less stressful.  It was a beautifully warm day – really a touch of the Indian summer – and so I was dragged out to the river after dinner as well, because She wanted a long walk in the evening sunshine.  It doesn’t seem to matter whether I want another walk or not.  And I didn’t.  So I dilly dallied around a bit on the way down the road – there has been a piece of chewing gum stuck to the pavement for a few days, and I’ve been doing my best to pull it up.  It is intensely irritating to have a nice minty substance stuck to the pavement and not be able to eat it.  I spent a while trying, though.

Once down at the river we did see a few friends also out in the evening sunshine, so I felt a little more positive about life.  There were also quite a few teenagers down there last night and some accompanying strange smells.  I’m not commenting on their attitude to personal hygiene here, if you get my drift.  Goodness me, what is the world coming to?

On the way back we bumped into Oscar the border terrier who jumped up at her and made her legs muddy as usual. Oscar can be relied on for this.  Oscar’s Pack Leader said I am looking very slim!  And he’s not alone – I’ve had several comments like that lately.  She of course becomes all puffed up with pride as though it’s some huge personal achievement. It isn’t.  In all honesty I am half-starved most of the time.  That’s why I have to try to eat chewing gum from the pavement.  Anyway, I was jolly glad to get home and curl up in my chair for the evening.

Lad and Young Lad didn’t seem particularly keen to do any homework last night, so there was another dull discussion about Time Management.  Neither Lad nor Young Lad took any notice whatsoever and Young Lad continued watching Family Guy whilst Lad continued looking up designer clothes on his phone.  Top parenting yet again.

If you remember, it was Food Tech for Young Lad at school yesterday.  I was really despondent when I found out it was salad, as this is just a total waste of everybody’s time.  In fairness to Young Lad he made a very good job of the salad and the combination of plum tomatoes, cucumber, grated carrot, sweetcorn and cheese was surprisingly appetising. Young Lad needs to give some thought to presentation, though, as walking all the way home from school with the salad upside down in a tupperware box in one’s rucksack is not conducive to attractive layers. Stopping off at the Co-op for a bag of crisps didn’t help either.

Lad is in discussion at school about which of his A Levels to drop.  Lad says he will drop English as the books are complete crap again, just like they were for GCSE.  I doubt very much that Lad has actually looked inside any of them, so this seems harsh and “Anthony and Cleopatra” does have some decent reviews to be fair, but Lad is very wise and always right.  Poor Lad.  Fancy having to read such inane literature.

Both Lad and Young Lad have managed to miss the football trials at their respective schools. This is quite careless as many other people did know when the trials were and turned up, but for some genetic reason Lad and Young Lad failed to do this.  Thus neither of them are in any football teams which means more time on the sofa. In addition, yesterday Young Lad thought it was rugby for PE and took his football boots to school when in fact it was basketball indoors and football boots were not allowed.  Young Lad was given the job of refereeing the basketball.  Mostly this involved shouting ‘Sir!’ when boys crashed into other and were injured. I don’t think it was a very taxing job for Young Lad, though maybe more so for Sir.

It is Friday night, Readers, at the end of another bldy week, and Slovenly Pizza night is underway.  Young Lad has fallen asleep under the red fleecy blanket watching 24 Hours in A & E on catch-up and really who can blame him.  The heating is on, I’m glad to say and I feel very sorry for poor Lad who is out with his friends in a town far away.  Poor Lad. Yes it was his own choice to bugger about on trains  but even so, it will be chilly for him travelling back tonight.  You would think He or She might go to pick poor Lad up if they had any kindness about them, but He is two glasses of Shiraz down and She is about to invite Gordon round.  You see the level of selfishness with which I live in this house?

Well, Readers, the success of the conkers is overwhelming.  The spider that ran under my chair sticking two fingers up the other night is probably still there. There was a large monster on the bathroom floor the other night, and last night a medium monster was in the hall.  What an excellent idea those conkers were.

I nearly forgot Friends – Lad was on time for a hospital appointment yesterday! I know!  It is such a step forward for Lad.  This was achieved by lying to him about what time the appointment was, bringing it forward a good 40 minutes.  She was very pleased to receive an email from Lad’s tutor today with the simple heading Lad: Punctuality.  She couldn’t wait to read it.

Well I jolly well hope we all get a lie-in tomorrow as I’m fed up with that ruddy alarm clock going off at 6am.  I’ll need to pop out in the garden for a comfort break at about 5, but then I’m hoping for another few hours’ sleep.  Fingers crossed.

See you soon,

Russell

 

 

Yearly tradition

IMG_20180925_210940_160 Here I am last night, Readers, looking very pleased with myself and slightly the worse for wear.  It was Lad’s  birthday yesterday.  On Lad’s birthday last year I celebrated with him by eating his entire three-layered 10 inch chocolate cake that She had lovingly made.  It hadn’t been pushed far enough back on the worktop and I managed to pull it off and eat the entire lot.  Regular Readers will know that a £300 vet bill followed this, due to tests to check that I hadn’t poisoned myself.  I hadn’t.

This year I decided to be less greedy and contented myself with snatching one large triangle of chocolate birthday cake that had been put on the table for He as He came home from work.  Sadly He wasn’t quick enough in taking off his shoes and getting to the table before me.  With one fell swoop it was down.  It was quite nice, but in all honesty it lacked the excitement of the three tiers and ten inches of last year.  This was merely one tier and a basic sandwich tin size.  A poor effort, really, and Lad deserves better.

So I was somewhat dopey after this large sugar and cocoa fest but quite proud of myself for having more self-discipline than last year.

Yesterday morning I went for a lovely long walk in the sunshine, and who did I bump into but Colin the Cockapoo.  Now I haven’t seen young Colin for a while and had forgotten how much he wants to play with me, and how little I want to play with him.  I had to make it perfectly clear that I was not up for chasing around playing silly beggars.  Further on in the field, I found a blackbird’s egg shell on the ground and crunched it up.  It was a very small appetiser but beggars can’t be choosers.

It was a smashing walk in warm sunshine and we met several old friends of mine including the very gorgeous Chuck, whose coat is glossier and fuller than ever.  The only thing that got on my nerves was that on the way back, She insisted on helping a lady who had lost her spaniel.  It was a close run thing, actually, as the pelvic floor was beginning to go and She wanted a cup of tea, but She tried to imagine how it would have felt if I had been lost – this wasn’t difficult as I have frequently run off and it’s taken half a panic-stricken hour to find me. So we had to talk to the lady to get a good description (a black spaniel – there are hundreds of them) and then start hunting around for the ruddy thing.  It really was quite unexciting and I was longing to get home to my chair.

Eventually we spotted a black spaniel running around up by the woods and returned the silly thing to it’s careless Pack Leader.  So that was our good deed for the week done.  I hope.

I couldn’t wait for Lad to come home from school so that he could open his cards and two presents – the anticipation must have been killing him – as I know that this tradition is always accompanied by tea and cake.  Plus of course She has to carefully record everything in the special notebook which ran out of room on Young Lad’s last birthday, so a second one has been found.  Surely Lad is not expected to write thank you letters at his age??  He has Philosophy to do for heavens’ sake!!

Readers, I was in for something of a shock.  No sooner had all the cards and two presents been opened, than my lead was put on me and I was dragged out to the car.  Now, I have been experiencing some problems of the rear end type for a few days – I didn’t like to mention it – but I had no idea that a trip to the Evil Vet had been booked!  It’s just been some leakage and unfortunate smell, and I simply don’t believe it necessitated such a trauma.  But “you stink” was hurled at me, and there was much muttering about the stench of my anal glands taking over the house.

Oh I was terrified.  I sat in the boot of the car and shook all the way there.  Thank goodness it’s only a five minute drive.  She had to drag me out of the car, and physically haul me into the Evil Vet’s waiting room where I sat in a very cowed position until it was My Turn.  The only good thing was that the Evil Vet that saw me is called Laura and she is my favourite of the Evil Vets, as Laura is very gentle with a hypodermic needle and doesn’t tell me I’m not very brave.  As it happens, Laura was quite gentle in squeezing my anal glands due to her small fingers, and whilst I had to be muzzled and I can’t say I enjoyed the experience, I didn’t scream and thrash around as much as usual.  

Then of course She tried to sell my book to everyone while waiting for the bill, which I felt was rather inappropriate.

It was all very upsetting and not least for the next patient into Laura’s room, as it stunk of oily fish.  The smell was truly shocking and I don’t know how they’ll ever get rid of it.

Once home, of course, they just dumped me on my own with Gingercat while they all went out for Lad’s birthday dinner at Plebzos.  Young Lad was moaning a bit as Plebzos don’t do fish and chips, but he was told to stop whingeing as it wasn’t his birthday and anyway She had a voucher for 40% off main courses.  And they were only to have a main course.  The sense of fun and reckless abandonment in my house never ceases to amaze me.  Naturally nobody brought me back a portion of main meal of any sort, which was disappointing but not entirely unexpected.

Then the birthday boy was truly blessed as he had to crack on with some homework at 9pm, day of celebration or not.  Poor Lad.

Readers, I had another terribly disturbed night.  I felt a little queasy in the night at 1.15am, and started making the glp glp glp noises that indicate I’m about to chunder, so I was shoved downstairs to make it as far as the wooden floor in the hall before anything happened.  In fact I made it to the kitchen and then had a good old barf in the garden.  It was lovely out there at 1.20am  and I would like to have stayed and taken in the night-time ambience but I was shouted at and made to come back in.  Then, Friends, at 3am, Young Lad’s alarm clock went off again!  Yes!  This is the second time this has happened recently and to be frank it’s getting on my nerves.  How hard can it be?  The strange thing is that Young Lad, who was sleeping right next to the bldy alarm clock, didn’t hear a thing and it was down to Pack Leader to go stomping in and turn the bldy thing off.  So there was much moaning about having been out of bed twice by 3am.  Tell me about it!

I’ve been at dear, dear Pippa’s house today and have thoroughly enjoyed myself with nice people who give a damn, so I am pleasantly sleepy tonight.  I just hope I am allowed ONE indisturbed night of slumber!  Honestly, you wouldn’t get all this stress in Meghan’s house.

See you soon,

Russell

 

Squeaky clean

IMG_2069 Oh dear.  As you can see, Readers, I had a nice time rolling in some cack today and had pleasant streaks all down my back when I arrived home from Pippa’s house.  Of course I was shouted at and Lad was told to get me upstairs and bathe me – this was quite nice really as Lad is gentle and makes a good job of my bath.  If truth be told I don’t know what the cack was that I rolled in but it was a slimy pink/brown colour so I leave it to your imagination.

But really it would be nice to come home after a long day of doggy daycare to soft, soothing voices and a cuddle rather than screeching “look at the state of him.”  Is this too much to ask?

It had been a traumatic walk home as it was, without all the screeching when I got here.  I had to walk past a man whose skin colour was of the hue I don’t much like, and he was ON HIS PHONE!  I was incensed by this rudeness and such poor standards – plus I had no idea to whom he was talking and it was VERY intimidating!  So I had no choice but to bark ferociously at him to show how very brave I am and how he was not to mess with me.  He took this on board and didn’t try anything.

Yesterday, Readers, was lovely as we went to Grandma’s house for lunch. As I raced through her front door I was greeted by the smell of a chicken happily roasting in the oven – it was heavenly.  I think the chicken was happy, anyway.  I was.  So I dashed straight into the kitchen, ignoring Grandma completely, and looked pointedly up at the work surface as it was time for a snack.  I was told this was rude and that I should make more effort to socialise before asking for food.  Rubbish.  Before long, drinks and nibbles were served in Grandma’s lounge which was excellent as I could do some more scrounging for snacks.  To my intense irritation there were no Tempura Prawns for hors’ doeuvres!  This is very poor – we ALWAYS have Tempura Prawns and I am given the dry tail bits. Instead, Grandma had served up mini spring rolls and prawn wanton things.  They were ok in my opinion, but lacked the crispness of the Tempura Prawn tail.  I hope Grandma takes note of this for next time.  Some smoked salmon wouldn’t have gone amiss either.

Anyway I was extremely well-behaved and sat under the table while the big family lunch went on. Although, when it was time to carve the chicken I decided to sit in the middle of the kitchen floor so that should a piece of chicken come flying off the electric carving knife I would be able to catch it.  This didn’t actually happen but I live in hope.

This was funny, Readers.  Later in the afternoon, She said it was time for my dinner and looked everywhere for the little bag with my food portion in it.  She searched and searched, knowing full well She had put it somewhere safe.  No sign of my dinner anywhere.  In the end, with some bad language, She had to give in and I was given a dinner of roast chicken, sprouts, peas and gravy.  It was wonderful!

When we arrived home that evening, She found the safe place in which She’d put my dinner.  It was inside one of her wellington boots.  

Yesterday afternoon He, Lad and Young Lad all went to the pub to watch Wet Sham.  I would not have enjoyed this, as it is noisy and there was no food involved.  How dull.  When they returned from the pub, Lad said that Yamalenko missed a sitter, but I had no idea what he was talking about and was bored rigid.

It was chaos here this morning, Readers.  At 7am Lad proclaimed that he was not well enough to go to school, due to one of his ‘heads’.  We all know what was probably on the timetable today, don’t we.  Not to be out-done, Young Lad said he had a stomach ache and pulled lots of unconvincing faces to illustrate his level of pain and lack of fitness for school.  There was some sharp discussion and raised voices, which annoyed me and I think it woke up Gingercat.  In the end Young Lad was told to stop being so bldy ridiculous, and Lad was told that if he was not well enough for school he was not well enough for ANY electrical gadgets, and these were all removed.  Lad seemed quite happy with this arrangement and went back to bed where he slept for five hours.  Poor Lad.

Young Lad received a text message after school tonight, which read, “the Xbox controller is in the tumble drier.”  You really couldn’t make it up.

Despite the fact that I was wet from my bath and I had already had plenty of walks today, it was decided after tea tonight that She needed some fresh air, so I was dragged round the Rec.  This was rather chilly and with a damp coat, I won’t be at all surprised if I have caught a chill.  How irresponsible and selfish.  I’ve had to hunker down in my chair to get warm, and thankfully someone has had the presence of mind to pop the heating on for me.  Really.

Dinner was not the best tonight, Friends, and whilst there was some effort made, the execution was poor.  Thinking it would be warming and comforting, She made Delia Smith’s leek and potato soup, which is usually a firm favourite here, but Delia didn’t use leeks that had been in the fridge for over two weeks and had no colour whatsoever.  Plus Delia’s potatoes were probably not sprouting tubers and rather soft to the touch.  So all in all, the leek and potato soup had a dreadfully anaemic, watery quality to it  and Delia would not want to be associated with it.  It was shocking.

Well, I really am worn out after all the walks and barking at the man with the skin colour, and then the palaver of having  a bath.

The Xbox controller is in the tumble drier.  Meghan, come and get me. Please.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

Roomy

IMG-20180921-WA0001 (4) Here I am in dear, dear Ebony’s bed.  As you can see, Readers, there is plenty of room in this bed. It is nice and spacious and I can stretch out comfortably. I am the guest in their house and it is important that I am able to relax. Ebony’s Pack Leader has bought a second bed as Ebony and I used to fight over this one.  The second bed is much smaller and more cramped.  Ebony, who is three times my size, has to sleep in that one.  I’m sure she doesn’t mind. I think they were looks of adoration she was giving me across the kitchen, not resentment.

Well what a funny start to the morning.  When She got up today, there was a round brown thing on the bedroom carpet.  Assuming that Gingercat had been knocking the conkers around again, She kicked the conker-like object back into the corner of the room.

Readers, it wasn’t a conker.  It was another brown, hard spherical thing.

I refuse to take responsibility for this being on the carpet and I have no idea from whom it popped out during the night.  Thankfully it was extremely firm in texture and very easily mistaken for a conker. I did laugh though!!

Last night was Slovenly Pizza night and I did more than my fair share of whining and begging.  I was treated to a crust of garlic and rosemary flatbread, which wasn’t as nice as it sounds.  I liked it though.  Young Lad and She seemed to be in their pyjamas  at an inappropriately early hour, and I don’t feel that a ‘bldy long bldy difficult’ week is any excuse for this lowering of principles.  Gordon popped round, of course, in rather a large glass with two ice cubes and a mouldy lemon end.  Desperate times call for desperate measure, apparently.  He had a nice Rioja on the go and Young Lad had to make do with sugar-free tropical crush.  It was a cosy evening, watching two episodes of Chicago PD back to back, which some might find depressing but Young Lad and She do love a bit of medical or police drama. And where was Lad, I hear you ask?  Lad was out with his friends in a town far away, and rocked home after everyone had gone to bed.  Nobody had left a light on or a welcoming snack out for him.  Poor Lad.

This morning I needed a comfort break at 5.30am but as someone had forgotten to unset their alarm clock from the working week, no sooner had I settled back to sleep than the ruddy thing went off.  This was very annoying.  I do wish people would be more considerate and remember when it is the weekend.  When it eventually WAS a sensible time to get up I jumped on top of He just as he was trying to sit up, and unfortunately head-butted Him hard across the eyebrow.  Luckily my head is extremely solid and I didn’t feel a thing, but He had a swollen lump for half the morning.  I don’t feel it required quite the fuss He made.

It is Lad’s birthday this coming week and so a trip was made to a town far away, for a look round John Lewis.  I doubt very much whether this had much to do with Lad’s birthday, and frankly needing ‘the unbiased, sensible sales advice’ is just a euphemism for needing to be in a clean, well-organised environment.  Now, Readers, rather worryingly John Lewis is in some financial difficulty at the moment or so I’ve read, and there are fears for its very future.  I know!  The bastion of Middle England with their Orla Kierly duvet covers and good quality towels!  So you will be very pleased to know that She single-handedly  helped to stem the tide of John Lewis’s demise with the purchase of a pudding bowl, at £3.99 and a carpet cleaning spray at £3.50.  Loadsakids says this is a fun new game; what can you buy in John Lewis for under £5, but I think we all know the answer to that.  Not much.

This afternoon there has been loads of bldy cleaning done as the house is bldy filthy and nobody else ever bldy does it.  Young Lad was forced to do his homework, which was some dreary English followed by some pointless Art.  Young Lad does not enjoy Art and did not enjoy making a collage of interesting textures.  The pieces of random things Young Lad has stuck on his collage look as though I chewed them for him, such is his finesse with a pair of scissors.

Lad, too, finally knuckled down to some Boring Biology this afternoon and made a small effort to organise his piles of notes.  Lad is cross that in Year 12 nobody gives you books to write in any more and you have to do it all on bits of paper to put into a folder.  Lad says this is crap and what’s the point?  I quite agree and I feel Lad is right as usual.

Then I was dragged out for a walk in the rain. Normally this would annoy me but to be honest I fancied some fresh air, and what do you know?  Dear, dear Pippa was down at the river!  We saw each other from afar and raced together, oblivious to all the other dogs down there.  Then Pippa jumped on my back quite hard and I snarled at her, and we played like this for ages.  To everyone else it looked like we were fighting viciously, but Pippa and I know the truth.  A bit of rough play does everyone good once in a while Readers, and it’s not often you hear me say things like that.

There were some strong winds the other night – you will remember I was vexed by the clematis on the trellis banging into the window – and there were quite a few branches down on the ground.  I also found a bird’s nest that had been blown out of a tree – this was exciting and I rushed up to see if there was a baby bird or at least an egg that I could eat, but there wasn’t.  This was disappointing.

I was tired out when we returned home and no choice but to get into my bed for a sleep.  I was also soaking wet and have made the house stink of damp dog.

Tomorrow we are going to Grandma’s for lunch!  I am very excited about this.  Grandma has promised me roast chicken and I will do my utmost to sit in the middle of the kitchen floor and get in everyone’s way.  The standard of the cuisine there will hugely outweigh the cack that has been dished up here latterly.  Bring it on.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

Annoyed

annoyedLad is squashed into my chair with me.  It is getting on my nerves.  All I want of an evening is some peace and quiet, and the chance to stretch out in my own armchair – I don’t feel this is a lot to ask, considering the life I lead.  But no, Lad has come downstairs and decided to sit on top of me as there is no room on the sofa.  I have tried whining and snarling, but Lad still won’t move.  I will have to think of another tactic.

Well, Readers, it’s been a strange few days and you haven’t heard much from me as everyone’s been too busy.  I have been at dear, dear Ebony’s house twice and dear, dear Pippa’s house once, so you can see how much time my own family have spent with me.   Wednesday was unusual in that I was having a nice peaceful morning with a bone, when Dishwasher Repair Man arrived ten minutes earlier than scheduled, to fix the dishwasher. (Error code E09).  Thankfully Lovelydor down the road was roped in yet again to save the day, and came up to let the repair man in, and make sure I didn’t kill him.  Lovelydor let me out in the garden for a comfort break, and it was well needed I can tell you.  It went on for ages.

I’m very pleased to report that the dishwasher is now working again.  I have really missed standing on the door every night, shoving my way bodily in and licking the plates.  It has been very dull listening to the arguments about washing up, and there is nothing in it for me.  (By the way, why doesn’t anyone ever want to dry up?  Why is  washing up slightly more popular?)  So I made straight for the dishwasher after dinner tonight, as She’d cooked a curry and the plates were really sloppy – to  be honest it was a little on the spicy side for me and I much prefer a korma, but of course nobody asks me.  I was also disappointed that there were no naan breads.  Standards are slipping even further, Friends.

Tonight She dragged me over the Rec for another walk – this was completely unnecessary as I had already walked miles with Ebony today, but She was being selfish and wanted some fresh air.  As we were wandering along, two ladies on bikes rode up and asked us if there was a conker tree nearby.  Well, of course we are the local authority on the position of horse chestnut trees so there was then a lengthy and uninspiring conversation about conkers and I was hauled down to the far side of the Rec to see if there was a conker tree there that we hadn’t noticed.  There wasn’t.  It was an oak tree.  I could have told them that, had they bothered to ask.

Lad has done some homework tonight!!  I know!  This is because it was Philosophy and therefore remotely interesting, as opposed to Chemistry and Biology which are very, very boring Lad says.  Lad’s Philosophy homework was all about stem cell research and such like, which personally I would find as very, very boring as the Chemistry and Biology but Lad was really quite animated about it.  There was even a Dinnertime Debate tonight which was essentially a re-run of the debate Lad had in his Philosophy lesson today, but without anyone being remotely interested in it.  Lad wasn’t deterred by nobody joining in and carried on regardless.  Well done, Lad.

Young Lad hasn’t done any homework tonight, or in fact since the weekend.

I wonder if I’m teething, Readers, although I imagine I’m a little old for this.  Tonight over the Rec I felt the need to chew several sticks – one was barely more than a twig so not very satisfying – and since then I’ve been chewing an old bone in my chair. (Lad has finally removed himself.)  The bone makes a lovely grating sound against my teeth which I’m sure everyone is enjoying.  It also makes my chair smell nice.  To be honest, this is all probably less annoying than the clematis on the trellis outside the lounge window, which keeps smacking into the window in the wind.  Approximately every three seconds.  Of course, the trellis needs fixing but nobody will get round to it.

The house is filthy, Readers.  All these Extra Working Hours means even less time to whip a hoover round or do some dusting.  The kitchen floor hasn’t seen a mop since August and there’s been a fair bit of rain and messy cooking since then. Honestly it’s disgusting.  How many of you haven’t mopped the floor for three weeks?  Exactly.  I just hope none of you come round to visit; it’s embarrassing.  Meghan Markle’s kitchen has its floor mopped daily, I can tell you.  It gleams in Meghan Markle’s house. 

Do you think she’s finished my book yet?  Surely she has by now.  Maybe Meghan loved it so much that she’s reading it twice.  I’m sure I’ll hear from her soon; I was very careful to write my address clearly. I’d love to live somewhere sparkling clean and hygienic.

You will be pleased to know that Young Lad’s Food Tech starts again next week.  I was less pleased to know that the first dish to be ‘cooked’ is salad.  For the love of God, how hard is that going to be?  Young Lad has already decided on his ingredients – tomato, cucumber, grated carrot and with a touch of flair, red pepper.  Seriously.  Why can’t they make something appetising like T-bone steak? Salad my foot.  What a waste of a lesson.

Lad has just reappeared and squeezed up against me on the sofa – I had moved over here due to the nice red fluffy blanket, but for the second time tonight I have very little room and am squashed against Lad’s thighs. Lad doesn’t seem to have noticed as he is watching Family Guy and complaining that his satsuma is ‘off’.   Life is hard for Lad at times.

Young Lad has sensibly gone to bed after a very tiring few days.  I’ve taken to sleeping on his bed with him latterly, as Young Lad is a much nicer bed-mate and doesn’t push me around or tell me off for bed-hogging.  In fact, I think I will go and join him soon.

Lad is right.  His satsuma was off.  This is dreadful – poor Lad tries to eat healthily but can’t even find a piece of fruit in its prime.  Sloppy shopping and organisation.  It is not just me that suffers neglect in this house.

Golly I’m tired from that extra walk over the Rec tonight, traipsing around to look for a ruddy conker tree.  I’m back at dear, dear Ebony’s again tomorrow so hopefully will get a decent kip in her bed.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

Provocative

shockedLast night’s blog, Readers, was designed to provoke a response from some of you.  It is never good to be a passive reader, and one really ought to engage with the material in front of one, so I added a frisson of controversy last night to see if anyone was awake.  It works for Donald Trump.

It was the suggestion that people who live in the North of our fine country sit out on their front doorsteps drinking mugs of tea.  Now, several of my Readers come from beyond the Watford Gap, so I was interested in who would be appalled by this out-dated and inaccurate stereotype.  Sure enough, Colleague 1 was straight onto Whatsapp to register his outrage, even before the ink was dry!  I knew he would be.  Well done Colleague 1.   At least someone was listening.

Anyway, enough of my little games. I’ve had a splendid day, actually, as I went to dear, dear Pippa’s for daycare.  But guess what?!  I had a little fun before I left home! It was absolute chaos here this morning, Readers – Lad was late for the bus, then when he realised he’d missed it, he also discovered that he’d left his bus pass at home.  Poor Lad.  He had to walk all  the way back home, saying some inappropriate things, and then found he had forgotten his key so couldn’t get in.  There was a lot more bad language, and poor Lad had to traipse round all the neighbours until he found someone with a spare key.  Once Lad eventually got indoors, I was proud to display the contents of the bathroom bin and his bedroom bin, all over the landing. This cheered him up a lot.

Lad cleared up the mess and set off for school for the second time. You can imagine his mood.

Then I simply went to the bin in the downstairs toilet and emptied that one instead, chewing things up and spitting them out on the carpet.  When Pippa’s Pack Leader came to get me for daycare, she found the mess.  It was a laugh.  And to be frank, I had been given my Kong at 7.30am with a leftover roast potato mashed right down the bottom of it, so I felt some protest was in order.  Really, it was most annoying trying to get the ruddy squashed potato flesh out of this silly rubber ball thing.

Well, tonight Readers I am lying upside down in my chair beautifully relaxed.  The same can’t be said for everyone else.  Lad had another of his many dreary hospital appointments today – I know, it bores me to death too – at the Important Place in London.  Do you remember last week, Friends?  When he showed a clear disregard for punctuality and therefore they had to wait over two hours to be seen at that one?  Well, Lad excelled himself again today, by strolling slowly into the station (the pre-arranged meeting place) a mere 30 minutes after the pre-arranged time.  Thus two trains had been missed and Lad was greeted with an icy stare.  Poor Lad.  It is a well-known fact that people of Lad’s age have difficulty with speed and coordination.  There was no need for the screechy lecture he received on Platform One.

As it was, they were only 15 minutes late for Lad’s appointment due to a breakneck dash through Holborn and refusal to acknowledge the red man at pelican crossings.  This was good, as She and Lad then only had to sit in the cramped corridor for two and a half hours.  I’m sure it was absolutely lovely.

So there is a certain amount of sullenness here this evening. You get used to it after a while.

Well, as I had predicted She was too bldy tired to bldy cook after a stressful dash to Central London, so Sparks Means Marks did indeed come up trumps.  Thankfully, Lad chose his usual four cheese ravioli as Lad knows I love that plastic tray, whilst He and Young Lad were bought macaroni cheese.  She splashed out on a king prawn linguine as there had been no food consumed since breakfast and “sod the calories” was declared.  So I have had a lovely time cleaning out all these plastic trays.  You really do get a better standard of fat and salt-laden ready meal from Sparks Means Marks.

Poor Young Lad had to walk all the way home from school today, and be a latchkey kid again.  I was still at Pippa’s for daycare, so wasn’t even there to keep him company on the Xbox.  I know he would have enjoyed that.

You’ll be glad to know that I had a better night’s sleep, Readers, thank you for asking.  I only needed one comfort break in the night – at 2.30am – and then managed to hold it until She got up at 6am. Was this appreciated?  Of course not.

I’m trying not to laugh as I type this part – remember the conker collecting the other day?  Well, such is the shoddy attitude to finishing a job here, that the conkers were still on the breakfast bar in the kitchen last night, instead of having been positioned in corners known to be popular with spiders.  So what happened as they were watching a tense BBC1 drama last night?  A large spider ran across the carpet waving at them, and disappeared under my chair.  It’s still there.

So there are now ruddy conkers all over the place in corners, but they won’t stay there for long as Gingercat likes to kick them all over the shop.  It’s very irritating and I wish they wouldn’t bother.

Goodness me look at the time.  No wonder I’m exhausted.

Bye for now,

Russell

Frivolous

20180916_115740 Today I was unusually light-hearted, and rolled around in the garden in the warm sunshine.  This is what happens when it’s the middle of September and unseasonably warm.  Of course, the moment anyone spotted me being fun-loving and smiling, they rushed out to take a photo as these moments are rare.  How patronising.

In fact it was so warm today that they ate Sunday lunch in the garden.  This doesn’t seem quite right – a hearty roast with all the trimmings just isn’t what suits sunshine and 25 degrees, but there you go.  The hearty roast was in an attempt to make up for the sloppy culinary effort last week, where standards were seriously lacking.  There was even a warming apple and summer fruit crumble for pudding, and really the whole thing was far more appropriate for a cold day in January.  Actually Lad said the warm sunshine was making him feel ill, and took his pudding back inside.  I can see his point.

I had a very disturbed night, Readers,  There I was, sound asleep in my chair during Match of the Day, when I was woken by loads of screeching tyres and such like from the Rec.  Half an hour it went on! Now call me old-fashioned, but I fail to see the attraction of nicking cars and driving them very fast round and round a recreation ground.  Some people have very little imagination if you ask me and surely their time could be better spent.  Anyway I imagine they enjoyed themselves and were very pleased with the mess they made of the grass.  I just wish they hadn’t made so much noise, as it was irritating.

Then at 2.20am I needed a comfort break. I was moaned at of course for needing to be let in the garden at this time, but it’s hardly my fault.  Stupidly She let Gingercat in at the same time, and then Gingercat started yowling at 3.30am.  So there was another trip downstairs to chuck him in the garden. More moaning, and more to the point I was woken up during all this.  THEN, would you credit it, Young Lad’s alarm clock went off at 4.30am!!  You really couldn’t make it up.  Young Lad couldn’t find his alarm clock so She had to stomp in there to turn the bldy thing off.  Young Lad said he hadn’t tampered with it but someone clearly had.  I was exhausted after all this disruption, and went back to sleep until I needed another comfort break at 7am.  It being Sunday She was in a right foul mood.  Lad and He had managed to sleep through everything – well done, Lad and He.

Of course there was a need to ‘pop into town’ after all this, to meditate and take deep breaths in Costalotta.  Some texting to Loadsakids was in order, and the usual subjects of bldy teenagers/bldydogs was covered.  Sometimes She and Loadsakids think about the afterlife and they are planning to spend it in a cottage in Italy, with chilled wine on the terrace every evening and lots of books to read.  I doubt very much whether teenagers, dogs or husbands feature in this plan.  Hurtful.

There has been  no sign of Homeless Guy Outside Sainsbury’s for a long time.  If you remember, I told you that he had moved pitch closer to Costalotta so that people didn’t keep going to Dreggs for his treats, but he hasn’t been around for ages.  The last time She saw him he looked a strange colour, and I fear he has  been very unwell.

He and Young Lad have been playing a lot of cricket in the garden recently, due to the lovely weather. This annoys me.  They make quite a lot of noise shouting “How’s he?” and Howzat?” and other ridiculous things.  I do occasionally join in and try to field the ball but it’s quite boring after the first minute.

Lad was rather irritated this morning, to be taken a cup of tea at 11am.  He had left EXPRESS instructions that he was not to be woken early, as he needed some sleep.  Poor Lad, I think he has every right to shout at everyone. 11am is laughably early.  I would have been furious.  Then to add insult to injury, She started creeping round his bedroom putting clean clothes away!  I know!  It’s outrageous.  No wonder Lad was in a shocking mood for the rest of the day.

This afternoon was gloriously sunny and although I was perfectly happy relaxing in the garden, I was dragged out for a three-mile fast walk.  It really wasn’t the weather for this, and several times I had to climb into the river to cool down. There were two young Pointers down there today, who kept leaping into the water from the bank, and of course there were the usual silly comments like ‘go on Russell, why can’t you do that?’ etc etc.  What is the point of jumping in, when you can carefully climb along the bank and tiptoe in cautiously?

He, Young Lad and Lad went up the pub later on to watch Wet Sham.  This was nice because it was very peaceful at home for a couple of hours.  The sun had gone from the back garden, so to my utter incredulity She made a cup of tea, put my lead on me and made me sit in the FRONT garden with her!  What are we, Northerners?  What on earth did that look like, to everyone walking up the road?! Dreadfully common. I was quite embarrassed, to be honest.  Things did then improve as it was time to do some baking for Sunday tea, and a vast amount of chocolate cake was knocked up in an attempt to pacify the neighbours who keep being dumped on.  A large cake was taken to the people round the back with whom Young Lad has invited himself to travel to school each day.  Really, I don’t feel a cake makes up for this exploitation of the local community.

Talking of which, it’s another busy week of course.  Everyone is at work/school tomorrow plus She and Lad then have to dash up to the Important Place in London for an appointment, and enjoy the Central Line in the rush hour. I am going to daycare at dear, dear Pippa’s house, thank goodness.  Hopefully She will be too bldy tired to cook a proper meal when they get back from London, so ready meals from Sparks Means Marks will be purchased, which is good news for me as I get the plastic trays to clean out.  I hope Lad gets the four cheese ravioli as I do rather like that one.

Gosh it’s tiring lying in the sun half the day.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bonkers conkers

conkers How utterly ridiculous, Readers.  In this futile attempt to pretend we live a simple country life, my walk was interrupted again today – this time not by boring blackberry-picking, but by equally dull conker collection. And the reason for this is just as ludicrous; to keep out any spiders that might be stupid enough to come into our house.  Ah yes, ye olde wives’ tale that arachnids are deterred by the smell of horse chestnut, so long as you jab a sharp instrument into the conker to let the smell out. What utter nonsense.  Anyway, there I was quite happily ready for a fast-paced sniff around when I was made to stand still for AGES while She faffed around in the leaves trying to spot a conker.  She was a little vexed as some children had beaten us to it and we only found one, but there you go.  There are still some horse chestnuts in their shells high up on the tree, so we just need a good wind to bring them down.  Or a stick.

The things I have to put up with.  It was a lovely walk other than that, with a speedy stomp up through Top Field to the theme tune from “Happy Days.”  Most of you are too young, I realise. The rhythm of Happy Days  (Sunday Monday, Happy Days, Tuesday Wednesday, Happy Days – you  get the idea) was spoiled somewhat by the irritating slip slop noise from her flip-flops – this does get on one’s nerves after three miles.  Why She can’t wear trainers or sensible walking boots like everyone else, I don’t know.  It smelled particularly rabbitty in Top Field and I suspect there were a few rotting carcasses around, but of course I wasn’t given much chance to find them.

Someone has very helpfully decorated the bridge over the river, by spray-painting the railings red.  This looks rather garish in an otherwise green and fertile location, but it was nice of them to be creative.  The dog poo bin is hanging off, as well.  Some people clearly don’t have enough to do.

Well that’s never a problem in my house, Readers!  The Extra Working Hours are a complete nuisance and combined with TWO evening meetings at Lad’s school this week, I have barely set eyes on Pack Leader.  I have made a small protest by sleeping on Young Lad’s bed instead of hers, which has nothing to do with the fact that Young Lad has put his fluffy Manchester City blanket on it.  Poor Lad and Young Lad have been utterly neglected on the cuisine front, of course.  There was a half-hearted pasta bake prepared for them on Thursday evening, but when He served it up He forgot about those little accompaniments called vegetables, so Lad and Young Lad had a very unexciting plate of pasta in tomato sauce.  This is very poor parenting and I feel She could have found the time to chop up some broccoli  before She went to work, as well.

The white goods debacle rumbles on.  The dishwasher (error code E09 if you remember) cannot be used so there has been a return to the days of washing up.  This hasn’t been altogether good-humoured.  Dishwasher repair man isn’t coming until Wednesday so we have several more days of arguments about the washing up to get through yet.

Luckily my good friends have stepped into the breach this week, to give me a little company.  I went to dear, dear Ebony’s house for two days and dear, dear Pippa’s house for one.  Pippa was so excited to see me!  Due to her “being on heat”or whatever, I haven’t been able to see Pippa for AGES so we bounded around like long-lost friends.  Then I found a nice chair in the sunshine and had a sleep.  Blow me down, Pippa’s Pack Leader took me for THREE walks that day!  I know!  I felt this was a little excessive but was too polite to say so. I could barely move in the evening.

This is annoying.  Young Lad is sitting on the sofa with a big chunk of chocolate cake on a plate and I am leaning over him as far as I can.  I’m trying to pluck up the courage to go in for a fast snatch, but he’s eating it really quickly.  Selfish.

So due to the Extra Working Hours none of us have seen much of Pack Leader this week.  Young Lad has managed to scrounge lifts off various people, especially the neighbours round the back, but has been forced to walk all the way home three days out of five.  Lad is trying to get to grips with Year 12 in the sixth form, and is finding it hard to understand that “private study periods” don’t actually require walking into town to visit Macdonalds.  I’m sure the penny will drop soon.

I do wonder about secondary education in today’s world, Readers.  One of Young Lad’s lessons this week  – a lesson called Resilience, I kid you not – involved writing a rap or poem about fixed mindset or growth mindset.  What the actual heck?  And don’t forget this follows on quickly from Bingo in Woodwork. Happily Young Lad will soon be starting Food Technology again, so there will be the stressy shouting the night before when he says he needs cornflour.

Lad decided to go to another party in a town far away last night, but this was a late decision at 7.30pm.  The gentle, calm conversations with him about making plans a little further in advance and general bldy organisation seem to have fallen on deaf ears.  When Lad returned today, he was made to do the hoovering as penance.  This annoyed me as I was trying to sleep.

Next week looks as ridiculously busy as the past week has been.  No doubt various neighbours will be drafted in to help out, and I really think they ought to start saying NO.  On this subject, poor poor Lovelydor down the road was press-ganged into letting me in the garden one morning last week – this didn’t end well as Lovelydor forgot to bring her house keys with her, and was thus locked out.  It was win- win for me, though, as I had some company for a couple of hours until somebody came to her rescue.  Poor Lovelydor.  You see, Friends, this is what happens when you rely on everyone’s goodwill all the time.

There was some tetchiness here last night.  Lad had a hospital appointment in the afternoon which was supposed to be at 2.50, but Lad failed to read the letter properly or listen to Pack Leader when told to get the bus at 2pm and meet her at 2.40pm.  Lad phoned from the bus station (which is quite near Madconalds as it happens) to say he was catching the 2.50 bus.  This was clearly an error of judgement, Friends, as he would then be late for his appointment.  He was.  Then poor Lad couldn’t follow the signs to department A102 and became very disorientated.  It’s all very well saying ‘but old ladies and people whose  bldy mother tongue isn’t bldy English all manage to follow signs to departments in a bldy hospital,’ but this is very harsh on Lad.  I can understand how confusing it would have been.

Yes, he managed to navigate his way through seven airports on their Amazing Trip (yawn) but a hospital can be very misleading.  I don’t feel Lad needed the telling off he received and I don’t blame him for being rude.  All was well that ended well, as Lad was finally seen at 5pm and they both thoroughly enjoyed sitting in the waiting room for two hours not speaking to each other.  And then being stuck in bldy rush hour traffic.  Her friend Gordon popped in last evening.

I’ve been dragged out for a second walk tonight over the Rec, but actually this was marvellous as I bumped into dear, dear Ebony.  We chased balls and played like normal dogs, and I don’t feel She needed to make snarky comments like ‘are you sure that’s Russell?’ I do show my playful side occasionally, just not to my family. They depress me.

Golly I’m tired what with the two walks and leaning over Young Lad to try and snatch his chocolate cake.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

Stalked

Stem-and-calyx-pepper The green part of the pepper is called the stem, Readers, as you can see from this very informative diagram.  Hitherto I had always known it as a stalk, and it was this very thing that I chucked on the lounge floor this morning.  Whilst they were all out at work/school etc, I dragged the bag of potato peelings in from the back porch and much to my joy found a manky old bit of red pepper in there too. So I ate all round the nice red flesh but the green stalk (sorry, stem and calyx) were rather bitter so I left them on the carpet.  I also spat a few seeds on the carpet too. The potato peelings were all over the hall.  This is the second morning running that I’ve entertained myself like this, as Ebony’s Pack Leader found a similar mess when she came to pick me up yesterday.  But does anyone learn their lesson and put the kitchen waste outside into the green bin? Of course not.

Yesterday was fun apart from that, as I spent the day with dear, dear Ebony.  It made a change to have some company and be in a house where the White Goods don’t keep breaking down, causing a lot of bad language.  Young Lad was supposed to come and collect me when he got in from school, but Young Lad forgot as he was so tired from walking all the way home and needed a sit-down on the Xbox straight away. Poor Young Lad.

Actually, Young Lad held forth at tonight’s Dinnertime Debate for a change.  He was most incensed about an incident during woodwork today, whereby they had been playing Bingo, and ‘Matthew’ won within a ridiculously short amount of time, and there was no WAY Matthew could have won fairly!  She said “why were you playing Bingo in woodwork?” which shows just how much She misses the point, and Young Lad said it was a warm-up.   Personally I can’t see the link between Bingo and a butt joint, though who am I to argue?

It was a funny old evening here yesterday as She went to Lad’s school after work, for a Welcome to Sixth Form Evening and He went out for a curry with his brother and old friends.  Lad opted out of attending the Welcome to Sixth Form Evening as he has now been there four days and feels he knows everything there is to know.  This meant that Lad had to cook dinner for Young Lad and look after me.  Lad cooked fish fingers and chips, as that’s as far as his repertoire extends.  Young Lad said he doesn’t like fish fingers any more and there was a bit of a row.

When She finally stomped home from the Welcome to Sixth Form Evening, Lad was told there are a lot of important things he needs to think about.  He carried on watching “Power” or some such silly series and ignored her.  I don’t blame him – one wants to relax in the evenings. not think about serious things. For goodness’ sake.

Today She took me for a lovely long walk at the river, in the morning sunshine. We marched over the bridge into Top Field where there were lots of rabbity smells but She would keep telling me to hurry up.  Back down by the bridge, whom did I see but dear, dear Chuck whose coat was gleaming more than ever in the sunlight.  He was so beautiful, my Chuck!  Readers, you won’t believe it but Chuck’s Pack Leader has been reading my book out over the tannoy at Sainsbury’s!  Yes!  If you remember, he did the same thing with my blog last year in the run-up to Christmas.  I’m really very touched by the effort to which he goes on my behalf.  He did make a snarky comment about my spelling, but I pride myself on how few mistakes I make.  What he calls a mis-spelling, Readers, I call an abbreviation.  We will agree to differ.

Oh the moaning and fussing this morning.  As you know the dishwasher is showing an error code of E09, and is doing bugger all to wash the dishes.  I know, the glamour in this house overwhelms me at times, too.  So much phoning around was needed to ascertain how old the dishwasher is (18 months) and whether it’s still under guarantee (it is) and other dreary things like that.  The lady on the phone asked for the model and serial number, which meant She had to hang upside down inside the dishwasher and squint at some teeny weeny writing.  Anyway an engineer is very helpfully coming out to deal with error E09 a week from now, which means it’s like the olden days until then and they have to wash up.

It was decided that a good comforting Roast was in order tonight, to keep everyone’s energy levels and spirits up, as they have been flagging a little since the weekend. Mmm.  The standard wasn’t good.  The stuffing was virtually raw and the Yorkshires rather flaccid if you ask me.  I’m not convinced it was comforting at all.

Then I was dragged out for a second walk over the Rec, but this was an ill-conceived idea as it was chucking down.  This didn’t stop us and we trudged round the field in the rain.  She was wearing flip-flops, and clearly hadn’t looked out the window before setting off.  This is shoddy planning.  And then the complaining when we returned home, that I smell of wet dog!  Work it out then!!

Tomorrow I am home alone, although of course various neighbours have been drafted in to take responsibility for things.  LovelyDor down the road has been ordered to come and let me out during the morning – I might not want to go – and dear Pippa’s Pack Leader is going to take me for a lovely walk at lunchtime.  I know for a fact that She popped into PetsRVetsRToysRUs or whatever it’s called today and I suspect I’ve been bought a bone in the hope that it will keep me quiet for a couple of hours.  We all know it won’t.

Talking of neighbours, Lovelyneighbourontheright came round yesterday with a plate of Melting Moments.  I think they were to cheer us up after losing Grandad.  Melting Moments do in fact melt. and do in fact only take a moment to eat.  I have to say they are delicious.  

Oh dear.  Young Lad’s Geography teacher has sent his book home saying that he has only done half his homework.  One half was to cover the book with pictures of human and physical geography, which Young Lad did, and the other half was to cover the whole thing in sticky back plastic.  Putting sticky back plastic onto a book with pictures Pritt sticked on it, is even trickier than a book without any pictures on.  After all the stress of the dishwasher this morning, I feel there will be a lot of very bad language before the evening is over.

Thank you for all your kind messages about Grandad.  Somebody did point out that there was another thing Grandad and I had in common, which I had failed to mention.  It is a side effect of enjoying rich food and lying on the sofa where air can become trapped.  Nuff said.

Bye for now,

Russell