Roll over

Basic-Bread-LARGE-HERO-32adc330-cdd9-4cf7-b467-03bca920dc15-0-1400x919 Today, Friends, was Food Technology for Young Lad at school and I always really look forward to trying whatever he has produced. Young Lad has previously made a splendid job of fruit salad, flapjack, rock cakes and macaroni cheese – in fact, the only slightly disappointing fare was the scone spiral but even that I would happily have eaten.  Had anyone given me any.  Well, I am pleased to say that Young Lad is back on tremendous form with his bread rolls – a small piece fell on the kitchen floor tonight, and it was light and fluffy.  The perfect texture; well done, Young Lad.  It barely touched the sides as I snaffled it down.

This was just before a hot jacket potato from the oven fell on the floor, and I made the mistake, Readers, of trying to snaffle that as well.  I grabbed a chunk (it had split everywhere) and ran to my bed – unfortunately a 220 degree oven meant that the potato was blisteringly hot and this was an error of judgement on my part.  It hurt.  I still ate it though.

It’s been a funny couple of days.  Yesterday She was here for the morning and I actually had some company  – normally this involves a ridiculously long stomp across the fields but for once I wasn’t forced into such an epic trek.  Indeed, I was sound asleep in my chair when there was some huffing and puffing about “suppose you’d better have a bldywalk” and my collar and lead were attached.  Readers, I did not want a bldywalk and was perfectly happy to stay where I was.  But of course I wasn’t listened to, and even though I refused to budge from the chair, I was pulled bodily by the lead and dragged round the Rec in the drizzle.  When we got home, we both climbed straight under a blanket on the sofa and stayed there for two hours.  Which is what I wanted to do in the first place.

There was no mad dashing around to football training last night as Young Lad’s sore hand meant he needed to rest it – of course this didn’t extend to the Xbox.  I felt this was very pleasant change from the normal Wednesday way of things and was able to sleep in peace, instead of listening to the yelling of “WATER BOTTLE!!  BOOTS!!” and the like.  To compensate for poor Young Lad missing football training, She knocked up a steamed syrup pudding which is Young Lad’s favourite  – oh dear, Friends.  Last night the level of concentration wasn’t good and I’ve no idea how it went so horribly wrong, but what appeared was more of a cowpat than a syrup pudding.  It wasn’t edible, for them anyway, though I did try a bit as the plate went in the dishwasher.  It was quite a nice cowpat – it tasted  better than the ones I’ve rolled in.

I was so annoyed last night, Friends.  You know how much I value a good night’s sleep without interruption, but last night’s events were an abomination.  Cough, cough, cough, bldy cough, cough.  That was She.  Then Lad came rushing in with a pint of water to see if that would help shut her up  and my sleep was disturbed for longer while Lad decided to stay and chat as he couldn’t sleep.  Readers, it was 2am. Gingercat had heard all this racket from out in the garden, so he came in and started yowling.  I had JUST got back to sleep when what do you know, the ruddy alarm clock went off.  And the central heating that needs a power-flush cranked into action.

You will notice that Young Lad and He had failed to be disturbed by any of this racket – well, lucky them.

I can only hope that tonight is better, as one of the above factors has been fixed.  The pipes have been power-flushed by the local friendly plumber today – it was quite a job by all accounts and we are looking forward to the bldybill.   It’s a shame the plumber couldn’t do anything about the other problems.

Tonight’s Dinnertime Debate was about whether Hitler did, in fact, die in 1945.  My family do like a light-hearted discussion over their jacket potatoes.  Young Lad feels it really was Hitler’s body in the bunker, but Lad says there is a conspiracy theory that suggests the whole thing was staged and that Hitler was actually living in Brazil.  Lad and He do like a conspiracy theory, and I’ve had to sit through dreary deliberations over the Moon Landing and JFK’s assassination before now.  How many other beagles have to endure this while waiting to clean the plates before they go in the dishwasher? It’s such nonsense and bores me rigid.

Friends, I have some bad news.  I hope you are ready for this.  Tomorrow evening I am going away for a week – yes, a whole week – with He and Grandma.  We did this last year, and had a splendid week in Cornwall where I had many jolly japes including going on a bus (I sat very nicely) and lots of long walks on the beach.  It was so pleasant that we are repeating the experience and I will be away for several days.  Thus, Friends, there will be no blog for a week – unless my behaviour is so poor that Grandma phones She to snitch on me.

I know, and I’m sorry. My blog had over one thousand views this month, and I know for a fact I have some new beagle-people followers, who will be devastated at this news.  Look, good things come to those who wait and I will be back with my merry tales next weekend.  In the meantime it’s possible that the house might be cleaned, and Lad/Young Lad might have ironed shirts to wear to school as there will be some “extra” time due to not writing the blog.

Talking of which, Young Lad was sent to school today with no lunch.  Can you believe this?  The standard of care just falls further and further – poor Young Lad went to eat his packed lunch and was absolutely starving, only to find there was no sign of any food in his bag.  Lad had been given a nice packed lunch.  Young Lad had been forgotten.  This is dreadful mistreatment – Young Lad had no choice but to buy carrot sticks and hummus from the school canteen (an interesting choice) and eat his own bread rolls on the long walk home.  Without butter.  And the excuse given?  “Oh I thought I had made you some lunch.”  Clearly not.  Eyes.  Being. Taken. Off. The. Ball.

It rather worries me what the level of care will be like here, when He and I are away next week.  Will Gingercat still be here when I return?  Will Lad have moved out in search of better parenting?  Will Young Lad have faded away completely?

To be honest I feel I really  need this break away, as I have to put up with such a lot.  I will miss dear Ebony and Pippa dreadfully, but really my life is so stressful that I need some space in which to find myself again.

Don’t you worry, Readers, I will  be back.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

 

 

Reluctance

bed Here I am this morning, Readers, struggling with the concept of getting up.  It was far too early, as usual, and I simply wasn’t ready to face the day at 6.15am.  So I put my head under the pillow and pretended that it was still the middle of the night. Have you ever tried this? It was hard to sleep what with the noise of the hairdryer, showers, banging cupboards in the kitchen and the very noisy central heating.  I was quite irritated to be honest.

Nobody cares.

Eventually I was dragged off and had to go downstairs.  Lad was having much the same trouble as  me and I fear he may have missed his bus.  Again.

I had a lovely day today, as I went to dear, dear Pippa’s house for daycare.  We had a marvellous walk and I spent the rest of the day sound asleep.  It goes without saying that I was impeccably  behaved at Pippa’s house – much the same as yesterday when I was impeccably behaved at dear Ebony’s house.  

Alas, She had forgotten that Young Lad had football training after school last night and wouldn’t be able to collect me, so Ebony’s Pack Leader very kindly took me home.  Now this wise lady moved all sorts of things out of my reach – a tub with two rather solid home-made apple pies in, a packet of biscuits and the like. How wise and thoughtful this was.  Ebony’s Pack Leader went home, safe in the knowledge that I could not be naughty.

mess Oh dear, a fool doth think he is wise.  Seconds after Ebony’s Pack Leader left me, I was in the cupboard under the stairs, jumping up and knocking down a tub full of nails, screws and a football pump.   They went all over the floor in a pleasing mess.  Then I found a blackening banana skin in the back porch and dragged that onto the lounge carpet.  Not quite satisfied, I discovered yet another fat ball for the Stupid Starlings and chucked that on the lounge carpet as well.  Readers, I feel this was quite an impressive effort in the barely twenty minutes that I was on my own.  I try not to waste a single minute.

She could not believe her eyes when She got home.  Of course there was nothing to do but simply laugh whimsically and say ,”Oh Russell you little rascal,” or words to that effect.

Dinner last night was a meagre affair of sausages and mash in a half-hearted attempt at giving the family a warm, comforting meal after a long day at school.  The home-made apple pies went down like a lead balloon quite literally – the pastry was far too thick and like a rock. Even I would have had to take a couple of bites.  Nobody was terribly impressed and I don’t think slapping lots of ice cream over the top did much to disguise the poor pastry.  I feel Lad and Young Lad deserve better than this.  Mr Kipling would have turned in his grave.

Poor Young Lad is injured.  She received a phone call at work this afternoon, which She made the mistake of thinking might be urgent, and indeed it was from Young Lad’s school medical officer.  However instead of having one of his funny turns, Young Lad had simply fallen underneath a rather large pupil, who had landed on his thumb.  Thus Young Lad’s thumb was swollen and “injured.”   Reluctant to dash to collect him and spend six hours at A & E, She rather coldly said, “we’ll see how it is later,” and made little effort to go home early.  Readers, you’ll be very glad to know that Young Lad was managing to operate the Xbox controller okay, even with his injured thumb.  He couldn’t pull the curtains shut in the house, apparently, as this is difficult with only one hand, but it is perfectly feasible to control the Xbox when incapacitated in this way.  Well done, Young Lad.  There has been a slight increase in sympathy this evening as Young Lad’s thumb is indeed very swollen, but I feel they have been lacking in their empathy.

Lad has been to the gym again and is showing more energy than he has done for a very long time.  She says if he applied the same bldyeffort to his bldyAlevels he would be doing much better than he is.  Parents’ Evening is coming up for Lad, and this isn’t promising to be an uplifting experience.  Lad isn’t looking forward to it either.

Tonight’s Dinnertime Debate was all about the best way to ‘take someone out’ when fighting them.  Young Lad said there is a special part of the neck that renders one unconscious if hit hard, and Lad agreed with some demonstration.  Young Lad then wondered if thumping someone hard on the cheekbone has the same effect and so the tedious conversation went on.  I slept heavily under the dining room table, rousing only to see if any broccoli had fallen to the floor.  Then He, Lad and Young Lad discussed which type of alcoholic drinks Young Lad might enjoy when he is older, with He feeling that Jack Daniels won’t be to his liking.  Again, I was bored beyond belief and had no choice but to wander to the kitchen looking for things to eat.

Last evening, Friends, I felt quite playful!  Yes!  I had a look in my toy basket which has been tidied up recently, and found a cuddly husky dog thing.  I dragged it around the lounge and threw it up and down in the air – then Lad got hold of one end and we played tug-of-war for, oh about thirty seconds before I tired of the whole affair.  Fancy that – me playing!  I don’t know what came over me, and was absolutely exhausted afterwards.

Tomorrow, Readers, I am actually having a day at home for once as She is not working in the morning.    It’s nice to think I might have some company in my own home, just every once in a while.

It should be football training for Young Lad again tomorrow evening, but this of course depends on how badly injured his thumb is.  I will keep you posted.

Bye for now,

Russell

Guilty

IMG_20181124_202706_464 Last night  I ripped up a Young’s Cod in Batter box and scattered it on the kitchen floor.  It was fun.  I tried to slink off discreetly but of course had to pose for the obligatory “WHO did this?” photograph first.  For heaven’s sake.  We all know who did it.

It had been a funny old day with lots of coming and going.  She went to do the bldyfoodshopping, then came home, then He went out, then She went for a quick coffee with Lovelydor down the road, then She came back and took me for my walk, then Young Lad went out to see a friend and so it went on all day.  It was exhausting, Readers.  I had no idea who was in and who was out.  Apart from Lad who was pretty much consistently in bed.  No wonder that I was so stressed I had to go through the recycling bags and rip up some boxes.

Our walk was pleasant if mis-timed.  Due to all the going in and out, we were very late setting off and didn’t leave until 12.30pm.  This was a shame, as across the lunch hour there are very few of my friends down at the river.  Their more organised and responsible Pack Leaders take them out earlier in the morning, so it is more of a social occasion.  I was pretty much the only dog down there yesterday lunchtime.  This is not good for my social skills and is very selfish of my family.  What’s that?  I never play with any of the other dogs anyway?  I don’t know what you mean.

Anyway we trudged over the bridge and up into Top Field where we stamped around to the tune of Bohemian Rhapsody.  Try that in wellingtons. I found half a dead rabbit but was screeched at and dragged away before I could eat it or roll in it – I hadn’t quite decided which.  There wasn’t a soul in Top Field other than a sparrowhawk type thing that kept hovering above its prey – She found this fascinating and stopped to watch but in all honesty it was incredibly dull.

Back home in the garden I watched as the Stupid Starlings’ bird feeders were re-filled, and was pleased to see a large wodge of mouldy suet ball fall onto the grass.  I grabbed it and ran off under the choisya bush to eat it – yes it had seen better days and had a grey furry covering , but I’m easily pleased.  I will make some cracking smells tonight due to all the fibre.

Lad was forced to do some hoovering yesterday, Friends, and tidy up his bldypigsty of a bedroom, and Young Lad had to put away five huge bags of food shopping. I wasn’t able to watch where he put everything, as I was out on my walk at the time and this was annoying.

Readers, I was really quite irritated at bedtime last night.  I was pretty tired, what with walking three miles and chewing through a mouldy fat ball, and all I wanted to do was get my head down on Young Lad’s bed for the night.  Unfortunately Young Lad had the same idea and there was something of a stand-off over who would get most of the bed.  I had spread out in the middle, and Young Lad whinged and moaned that he couldn’t get in – oh he did go on, Readers.  I kept growling and lifting my lips to show my teeth, but still Young Lad wouldn’t shut up.  It was nigh on eleven pm before we came to some sort of compromise and really this was too much.

This morning there was a lovely lie-in as for once nobody had to get up at silly o’clock.  She ‘popped into town’ on the pretext of needing light bulbs, but I know for a fact that this was a euphemism for visiting Costalotta.  This was felt to be a necessity as Young Lad had football match later on, and standing in the ruddy cold for an hour and a half meant a swift Americano was in order.  Eventually however, I was dragged out for my walk and this was far more sociable than yesterday’s.  First of all we had to give way on the narrow path down to the river as a nice family with a nice brown cockapoo were coming up towards us.  They stopped for a chat and said how lovely I was, and I told them about my Instagram account, blog and book.  I think it’s important that people know just how many balls I am juggling at times.

20181125_111213  Then look who we bumped into.  Yes indeed, the Bastard Swans are back on the river, and just look at the evil dripping from their eyes. I was happily climbing down the slope to have a drink, when up they came swimming towards me with malicious intent.  Never have I seen such nasty creatures as these.  Oh it’s all very well saying how beautiful they are, what a lovely photo etc but until you’ve been chased by the wretches you have no idea.  Hate them.

Thankfully we trotted on and met NicedogwalkerLady and her husband with the chocolate lab, and I was able to forget the terror of the white monsters.  A young black labrador came bounding up and wanted to play with me, but it was tedious so I ignored it.  Then – and this made me laugh – we bumped into the Friendly Local Electrician with his dog, and he asked how the tumble dryer was.  Now Readers, She had sent him a smug text message a while ago gloating that She had managed to pull out the tumble dryer, replace a fuse, and make it work – oh didn’t we think we were clever. The Friendly Local Electrician asked how long the tumble dryer worked with the new fuse and She had to admit it was less than 24 hours.  It was too funny.

On our way back from the river, there was a large group of teenagers wearing camouflage.  I’m not sure what they thought they were doing, but it was damned frightening seeing this intimidating group go past – just as scary as the pensioners’ walking group that gathers down there.  I barked and barked to show them how brave I was and how I would NOT be intimidated by young adolescents in combat gear.

Once home I snatched Young Lad’s fruit toast off his plate and ran off with it, as a reward for my bravery.

So here we go, another week. She has just done the frantic Sunday night texting around to see who will have me, and I’m off to dear, dear Ebony’s tomorrow.

What an exhausting weekend, Friends.

See you soon,

Russell

 

Cereal killer

shreddiesYesterday I arrived home from a lovely day at dear Ebony’s house, and ran straight upstairs like greased lightning to Lad’s bedroom.  This is because I knew Lad had not finished his bowl of Shreddies in the morning, and in the usual slovenly way of things round here had just left the bowl on his bedside table.  Now, my memory and sense of smell are superlative and I was determined to clear out that bowl.  I don’t mind that ten- hour-old cereal is dried out and stuck to the bowl, or that Shreddies taste like cardboard at the best of times.  I thoroughly enjoyed it.

After that I had a quick look round Lad’s room as there is always loads of  rubbish on the floor and sometimes you hit a winning streak and find a squashed Twix.  Sadly there wasn’t a squashed Twix yesterday but the stale bowl of Shreddies was nice.

After Tuesday’s catalogue of appalling behaviour, I decided to wind it in a bit yesterday.  Plus I was at dear Ebony’s, so there was no need to play up.  In between our lovely walks at the river, I slept heavily all day in Ebony’s bed.  

I’m not sure in what state I left Ebony’s bed as later in the evening it became apparent that my anal glands were rather full and leaking.  I discovered this when everyone started shouting, “Oh GOD Russell!!  You STINK!” and pushed me off the sofa.  Before I left the sofa I did sniff around where my rear end had been and indeed there was some leakage.  It wasn’t pleasant.  Thankfully my rear end had been on a cushion so at least this is washable.

It was very annoying, being removed from the sofa.  I had to climb into my chair on the manky old sheet for the rest of the evening.

Before all this palaver, I met a new friend of Young Lad’s as Young Lad has joined a new football team  – yes!  Less time sitting on the sofa!  Young Lad’s friend needed a lift to football, so he was told to arrive at 5.30pm.  Young Lad’s friend couldn’t wait that long and arrived at 5pm even though there were no adults here, so he and Young Lad sat on the sofa eating snacks.  This was marvellous for me, as I sat next to them whining and begging for something to eat.  I was displeased to find they were eating rice cakes, as these have a similar texture to Shreddies but I won’t turn my nose up at a bit of flavoured polystyrene if there’s any going.  I wore them down eventually.

Then She came rushing home from work, knocked up beans on toast for Young Lad and his friend so that they had some “proper” food inside them (really?  was this the best She could do?) and then there was lots of rushing round shouting “SHIN PADS FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!!!” and other strange things.  I’m not sure what Young Lad’s new friend thought of all the screeching and running around. but welcome to my world.

Wild horses couldn’t have dragged me out yesterday evening, Readers, as it was barely above freezing and personally I think it’s unreasonable to expect Young Lad to run round an astroturf for an hour in those conditions. She said it’s bldyunreasonable to expect mothers to stand by the side of the bldy astroturf in those conditions, but there you go.  During this, He and I were having a lovely sit on the sofa in front of the telly, with the central heating cranked up.  Lad was at the gym, and I was frankly surprised at the level of physical activity being shown by some of the family.  I decided not to add to it, and slept heavily.

I awoke when Young Lad and She came home, as Young Lad and his friend had been bought chips on the way home as a treat and to warm them up.  Young Lad’s chips smelled divine and I wanted some.  It was just the right time of a Wednesday evening for a snack and I felt that I was entitled to a treat as much as the next man.  It seems nobody agreed with me, and Young Lad didn’t give me a single chip.  The selfishness of this family never ceases to amaze me.

I did get my own back a little in the night, as I suddenly felt a little sick at around 3.30am.  I made the usual noises and did lots of heaving. and eventually trotted down the stairs where I retched up some long grass over the (thankfully) wooden floor.  She arrived on the scene, irritable as ever, and shoved me in the freezing cold garden so I took my time.  We finally got back to bed at quarter to four, and Gingercat started yowling at 5am, so it was an interesting night.

Perhaps if they had given me a chip or two, none of this would have happened.

Now there was a quandary today.  It turned out that Lad had a non-pupil day, so in theory he was here to look after me and keep me company.  After some thought however, it was decided that Lad was unlikely to wake up until lunchtime, and so this might be a little unfair on me and the concept of keeping me company was a non-starter.  So it was then that I went back to dear Ebony’s house for a second day, and I have to concur that the quality of the company there was considerably higher than it would have been at home.  Lad did indeed stay in bed until lunchtime, and then proceeded to leave a ruddy mess with bowls/plates/cups and general detritus all over the place.  There were some firm words with Lad tonight, Readers.

Well tomorrow is looking different, as this time Young Lad has a non-pupil day (what a strange idea this is) and so He and Young Lad are here all day.  This promises to be good for me, as it will involve some sitting around and relaxing plus a nice but not over-long walk.  Just right.

The only downside is that there will be no opportunity to rip up any recycling, throw anything round the lounge or chew up the Stupid Starlings’ Fat Balls.  You win some, you lose some.

Golly I’m tired.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

 

Helping

20181120_104103 This morning, Readers, I was left for TWO AND A HALF HOURS!!  On my own!  This is unacceptable and I was bored out of my mind.  Now, I knew that on the list of jobs for today was tidying up Lad and Young Lad’s school books and bits of paper – so I decided to get a head start on this while She was trudging round Tesco.  I carefully pulled the pile of books onto the floor and made sure the papers scattered around well.  And look what is at the front of the pile!  Yes my very own book!  I had a quick read and chuckled a bit – really, it’s very well-written though I say so myself – and it brought back some happy memories.  Good Lord, fancy me writing a book.

Anyway, I was still bored so I went and opened three cupboards in the kitchen.  Anything remotely edible is now of course up very high, but I did find a new pack of suet fat balls for the Stupid Starlings, and I dragged those into the dining room and ripped the packet open.  I ate one suet fat ball and left a nice mess on the carpet.20181120_114837

Readers, She STILL wasn’t back from Costalotta  Tesco, and in sheer desperation I had no choice but to go into the study and try opening a cupboard or two in there.  I left the art and craft stuff alone today in favour of Lego City Fire Station.

20181120_114723

All in all, a very satisfying use of time and it served her right for taking so long.   

Once She finally came home and stopped moaning about the mess, we went out for a Fast Power Walk.  It was teeming down with rain and really rather icy, and I just don’t know what possesses people to drag their dogs out in such inclement weather.  Who is meant to enjoy it, for heavens’ sake?  Plus I was kept on the lead as it was so wet and muddy and She didn’t want any bldychance of me rolling in anything.  We did a fairly brisk two miles and that was more than enough.

Once back in the warmth of home, I was banished to my bed in the kitchen to dry off as I was so muddy. This suited me just fine as She was beginning to get on my nerves.

What do you know – an hour later as I’m in a heavy sleep, I’m dragged out of bed and the lead is put on me as we are going out visiting.  Off we went to see Sicknote and as usual I behaved abysmally.  I was ‘rude’ apparently by running straight into the kitchen and sitting by the treat tin without saying hello first, and then I was “bad-tempered” “miserable” and “anti-social” for growling and snapping at young Delilah the Basset puppy who tried to make me play with her.  I have absolutely no idea what Delilah is doing when she rushes up at me wagging her tail, or thumps me with her large paw, but I find it quite disturbing and I have no choice but to show some aggression.

In the end I just climbed onto She’s lap and went to sleep.  It was very tedious listening to her and Sicknote talking incessantly for an hour and a half.

On a brighter note, I’ve had a good time in the dishwasher tonight as it was lasagne and we all know the state the plates are in for that particular dish.  There has been a surge in culinary effort recently, Friends, which has been a little alarming.  On Sunday She made a hearty casserole with herby dumplings and roast potatoes.  Nobody liked the dumplings and Lad said they were like rather solid yorkshire puddings.  Young Lad just gagged.

And tonight in addition to the home-made bldy lasagne, there is a home-made apple bldy crumble in an attempt to make Lad and Young Lad feel cared for.  If only the same effort was made for me occasionally.

In fact I was so hungry this afternoon that when Young Lad was back from school and had a plate of fruit toast for a snack, I had no choice but to leap up and snatch two pieces, sprinting fast to  under the dining room table so nobody could grab me.  Perhaps if I was fed properly this wouldn’t be necessary.  I was shouted at, of course, and told I’ve been naughty all day but I don’t really care.

Poor He has been out in the cold and wet all day today at work so was probably grateful for the lasagne and the  apple crumble.  Even though He will have had a big hot meal at lunchtime, another one is always welcome, as I know all too well.

Talking of which, yesterday I was impeccably behaved at dear, dear Pippa’s house all day.  Then Pippa’s Pack Leaders walked me home in the late afternoon, and they were impressed by the speed with which I ran from the front door to the kitchen counter where Gingercat had just been given his bowl of food.  Quick as a flash I jumped up and had that bowl out from under his nose and ran off with it.  Pippa’s Pack Leaders were astonished at how fast I can move sometimes.  Gingercat was rather annoyed that his dinner disappeared while he was on his third mouthful, and Lad had to open another packet of food for him and then give me my proper dinner.  It was fun.

Well tomorrow is another day, Readers, and I wonder what I will get up to. They’re all out at work/school so I will be going to dear, dear Ebony’s for the day.  At Ebony’s house I will not be opening any cupboards or chucking any piles of books around, as I don’t need to.  I will be cared for and loved – some would say indulged – and it wouldn’t hurt my own family to take note.

I suppose I ought to apologise to Sicknote for my rudeness again today.  I struggle with the whole “fun” and “joyfulness” thing.

See you soon,

Russell

 

Quick Turnaround

bin I have learned, Friends, that you have to grab opportunities whenever they arise and grab them fast. Today She gave Young Lad and his friend a lift into town which took five minutes. I had five minutes in which to tip the bin over, pull loads of the stuff out and drag it into the lounge.  By minute 6 when She returned, I was under the dining room table eating a red pepper stalk and dropping the seeds everywhere, plus I had licked clean the polystyrene pizza trays from last night.  I had chucked these on the lounge floor.  Which had just been hoovered.

I know what you’re thinking. There should never have been a red pepper stalk in the rubbish bin as it should have been in the food recycling bin.  Their lackadaisical approach to the environment bothers me too.

dog Here I am looking very sorry for having emptied the bin and trashed the place in five minutes.  Only I’m not sorry at all.

Yesterday was fun as I went to dear, dear Pippa’s house for daycare.  We had a couple of very long walks and I spent the rest of the day asleep in a nice armchair except when anyone went to the kitchen to prepare food, and I managed to rouse at these moments to go and beg at the kitchen counter.  

There has been some tidying up here today, or bldytidying up as it is known.  My toys have all been put in the basket nicely along with lots of old bones.  I had a good trip down memory lane looking at the old toys that I never use.  Young Lad threw a stuffed rabbit up and down the lounge  a few times and I ran after it once, but really it was quite dull and what’s the point? I was quite pleased to find an old lion and Iggle Piggle, whose heads I had ripped off in my more energetic days.

Last night of course it was a Boys’ Night In, as She and Loadsakids went to sit in a dark corner of the cinema and cry again.  This is the second film in a month that has caused some snivelling.  It beggars belief, Readers – why don’t they choose something uplifting and light-hearted for once?  It might lighten the endlessly morose atmosphere here.  Anyway it was a pleasant evening, as I slept soundly in my chair after tea, Lad shouted happily on the Xbox in the other room whilst enjoying a bottle of ginger beer (I think it was ginger), and Young Lad had a bar of Dairy Milk and a can of sugar-free fizzy rubbish.  He, of course, had a nice bottle of red and they were all very happy with their Friday night treats.  I had not been bought any treats.  It doesn’t seem to occur to anyway that surviving another week in this family is quite an achievement for me as well. 

Something of a lie-in this morning, Friends – and how I needed it.  I was heavily asleep on Young Lad’s bed and it was a jolly good job that he slept in a bit as well. The only person who rose early was He, as His car was making a dodgy noise yesterday and He had to take it to the garage at silly o’clock.  Thankfully I slept through the noise of Him getting up. 

My walk was a little late today, and we didn’t head out until two o’clock because She had to clean up all the mess from where I’d knocked the bin over and raided it.  Once out, the mood improved as it was a beautiful day and it’s very hard to be cross when you see Mother Nature in all her autumn wonder.  That was, until we went over the bridge by the river, from where we could hear the nasally whine of nasty BMX bikes.  Sure enough, up in Top Field were some hideous quad bike things with loathsome teenagers on them – really it was terrifying as they were wearing dark helmets.  She was highly irritated as our quiet, peaceful walk was now being ruined by the selfishness of these individuals who wanted to screech round Top Field.  Plus someone’s pelvic floor wasn’t doing too well but there was no chance of popping into the bushes in case a quad bike came roaring by.  

Disappointingly I didn’t see any of my friends at the river today – we were VERY late going out, don’t forget – but on the way back up the alley I did bump into Oscar the Border Terrier.  Oscar jumped up at her legs and She said ‘oh look, Oscar hasn’t made me muddy today,’ and they all laughed, but when we got home She found out that Oscar had in fact left lots on mud on her jeans, low down.  Oscar can be relied on for this and it does make me laugh.

Lad made a surprise appearance slightly before lunch today, and went out.  He is still out.  There has been some snippy text messaging to Lad, to ascertain when he is bldy likely to be home as we’re not bldy mind-readers and does he want any  bldy dinner or not.  Lad says he’ll be home in a bit.  This narrows it down a lot.

A large food shop was done again this morning, Friends, and I sat in the middle of the kitchen whilst Young Lad put everything away.  This way I can be sure of what is in which cupboard, in case I need to look for snacks during the week.  Young Lad had to keep trying to get round me as I was blocking his way, but I refused to budge as I had such a good view of every cupboard and the fridge from my position.  You’ll be pleased to know that this week Young Lad’s only putting-the-food-shopping-away error was to store the fresh spinach and ricotta pasta parcels in the cupboard with the tins and dried pasta.  It has been pointed out to Young Lad that these should go in the fridge and could he not feel that the package was bldy cold?  At least, this is the only putting-the-food-shopping-away error that they’ve found so far.

At one point today She thought about walking me into town, as it was the big Christmas Light Switch On this afternoon and there was a brief notion that standing amongst the crowds by the artisan bakery stalls with an appealing beagle would be atmospheric.  However She decided to leave me at home, and the text messages between herself and Loadsakids read “bldy elves everywhere”, “stuff this going home” so I don’t really think the right atmosphere was achieved.

Well  I’m quite worn out from the trauma of the quadbikes spoiling my walk today, so need to get my head down.

Bye for now,

Russell

 

Cunning Plan

IMG-20181115-WA0000  This morning, Readers, I came up with an incredibly clever idea.  Young Lad eats his toast whilst sitting on the sofa in the mornings ( I know, slapdash isn’t it) and then has to answer the door to Ebony’s Pack Leader when she comes to collect me for the day.  So today I tried something new – when Ebony’s Pack Leader arrived at the door I barked and barked, making it very clear that she was there, so Young Lad had to get up from the sofa and come out to answer the door.  What did I do, Readers, but slip between Young Lad’s legs and sprint back to the lounge where I grabbed his plateful of toast and ate it in two gulps!  It was sheer genius.  

What this meant was that Young Lad was very cross and didn’t have any breakfast, and Ebony’s Pack Leader had to wait outside for ages whilst I finished the toast and wandered back  out to the front door.

The toast was thick granary with butter, and it was so worth it.  I love a good piece of toast.  I don’t feel guilty that Young Lad went off to school without breakfast as frankly he should have eaten it more quickly instead of faffing around on his phone.  It was his own fault.

And guess what I’ve found in Lad’s bedroom tonight?  Another piece of granary toast that Lad didn’t have time to eat this morning!  Talk about result.   It was cold, unfortunately, as it has been sitting in Lad’s pigsty of a bedroom all day, but toast is toast and a third slice was most welcome.  I then had a look under the bed to check if there was any old packed lunch there and was delighted to find a Rocky chocolate biscuit.  It was squashed and rather crumbly – probably beyond human consumption in all honesty- but I found a home for it.

I also grabbed Gingercat’s food bowl and ran off with it at teatime.

So not a bad day, all in all.  I had a splendid time at dear, dear Ebony’s house and slept in her very comfortable bed for half the day. Ebony had to sleep elsewhere. She’s used to it.

I was rather late going home tonight, as Young Lad took far too long walking home from school with his friends.  I suspect there was some dilly-dallying and messing around plus popping into the Co-op for an unhealthy snack.  He could have brought me one.  Anyway, Young Lad seemed to have forgotten that he was meant to collect me, and when She texted him to say hurry up and collect the dog, Young Lad’s answer was “Chill.”  I’m not sure what he meant.

Readers, it was Food Technology day for Young Lad today!!  Yes, having got the wrong day last week and taken in his ingredients a week early, today was finally the day for macaroni cheese.   Oh I just couldn’t wait.  We were not disappointed, Friends, and although hanging around  upside down in Young Lad’s schoolbag for several hours hadn’t done a lot to the overall appearance of it, the flavour was superb.  I caught a little of it as it dropped off the side of the dish and splatted on the kitchen floor. Well done Young Lad.

Lad really didn’t want to get out of bed this morning and I have to say I know how he felt.  I was in a lovely deep sleep – don’t forget I’ve been dragged for a lot of very long walks this week – and was exceptionally tired. Lad and I could happily have slept on for several more hours, and it was a brutal awakening when the ruddy alarm clock went off.  He and I were both in filthy moods for quite a while after this.  The difference is that poor Lad then had to head off to face a ten-hour day of bus journeys and school whereas I slept in Ebony’s nice bed.

I had some lovely Happy Anniversary wishes the other night, Friends.  Thank you so much for your kind words, and who would have thought my blog would keep going for a whole year! It’s nice to be appreciated and you never know, one day it might rub off on my own family.

Maybe they are feeling guilty that I’m being neglected, as Lad uncharacteristically threw a toy around the lounge for me tonight.  It was a pink plastic bone that squeaks.  I ignored it.

You should see the state of our house, Readers.  This is due to all the Extra Working Hours and He, Lad and Young Lad failing to notice all the crap everywhere.  In front of me right now I can see my large bone in the middle of the carpet for everyone to stub their toes on, a pair of flip-flops, the triangle thing that holds the balls on the mini snooker table and a toy Japanese bus.  Lord only knows where that came from.  Everyone here is very skilled at walking around items like these and not picking them up. I think they practice.  Lad’s bedroom deserves some sort of award for its artistic bent, as it’s definitely in the Tracey Emin genre.  I love it when Lad’s bedroom is in this state as you never know what you might find underneath all the clothes and towels.  When She finally gives in and tidies up with LOADS of bldymoaning, it becomes far more boring, as there is no chance of any snacks.   I feel this is more important than the level of hygiene but nobody listens to me.

Tomorrow night is Friday evening and therefore Slovenly Pizza night.  However, due to it also being something called Children In Need, there will only be myself, He, Lad and Young Lad on the sofa for the evening as She will be going out with Loadsakids.  This has now become an annual event, as they choose to sit in a dark cinema with a cup of tea discussing Life In General rather than thinking about Children In Need.  She and Loadsakids feel they have a lot of children in need between them and that the whole bldy year is spent on children in need, so it doesn’t require a special bldy day.

Readers I think they have missed the point somewhere along the way.

Anyway, I will have a pleasant evening scrounging pizza crusts and leaving my bone in the middle of the floor.

See you soon,

Russell

 

 

 

Under the table

IMG_20181112_175104_844 While they were all at school/work yesterday, Readers, I had the best day I’ve had for ages.  Pour yourselves a drink and settle down – it’s been a cracking couple of days.

It started with a panic because Ebony and Pippa’s Pack Leaders were still away, so there was nobody to look after me.  Hence a slightly hysterical text message was sent to Lovelyneighbourontheright again, to see if they could save the day once more.  They could.

However before they popped round in the morning, I made good use of  my time.  

1.  Ate a broccoli stem from the back porch and chucked the plastic under the dining room table.

2.  Cleared out a cat bowl and chucked it under the dining room table.

3. Found a Babybel cheese (still a mystery that one) and chucked the red waxy bit under the dining room table.

4.  Walked miniscule bits of broccoli floret and some potato peelings over  the carpet towards the dining room table.

In short, it was a mess.  So was the back porch where I had knocked loads of stuff down, including the huge bag of conkers which are now rolling all over the place underfoot – how dangerous.

I hadn’t finished.  It’s been a while since I went near the art and craft box in the study, so I had a look through it and threw lots of manky tissue paper, sequins and scraps of material all over the floor.  To be honest it was in a very untidy state and needs sorting out, so I’m doing them a favour.

Anyway, then Lovelyneighbourontheright came to get me and to my utter delight they took me into their house!  I made straight for the utility room as I know that’s where they feed their dog, and indeed his breakfast was still on the floor,  I finished it off for him.  Then we went for a nice walk and they think I’m a lovely dog with excellent behaviour and manners.  Of course my own family moaned at me when they saw the state of the house and She said “asifIhaven’t gotenoughbldy thingstodo!”

In the evening I decided it would be a good time to gnaw loudly on my large bone.  This makes an attractive scraping noise and is highly irritating.  I even took this bone up to bed with me, and buried it deeply in Young Lad’s bed once he was asleep.  During the night my bone fell out with a loud bang.  So you see – a top day!!

Young Lad made one of his error of judgements after dinner last night.  It has recently become his responsibility to put away the food shopping on a Saturday, and I enjoy sitting right in his way to watch this process.  There follow a few days of trying to find where Young Lad has put everything as he has his own unique logic, but now that they know he puts the Paxo stuffing mix in the freezer and gourmet cat food tins on the shelf with the soup and baked beans, it’s becoming easier.  Anyway, last night Young Lad was forced to clear the table after dinner, and made the mistake of putting the  remaining teaspoon of Ben & Jerry’s in the fridge rather than the freezer.  Strong words were had with Young Lad about his mistake, but I enjoyed clearing out the pot.

This morning,Readers, I carried on from where I left off yesterday. Whilst She was on the school run, I ripped up Lad’s JD Sports  plastic bag which I knew darned well had some remnants of packed lunch in it.  Indeed I found a kitkat and ate it.  To reach the kitkat I had to pull Lad’s school books out of the bag and distribute them along the carpet as they were in my way.  Lad is very annoyed tonight about the JD Sports carrier bag, as apparently you can never find one of these when you need one, and now our household is down by one JD Sports carrier bag.

My walk this morning was stressful, Friends.  For a start, the very large group of elderly ramblers were snaking their way along the path by the river – there must have been thirty of the blighters, and it frightened the life out of me.  There was a lot of white hair, and some of them had sunglasses on – the men even had hats – and you know quite well that each of these things terrify me.  A HUGE group en masse like this is too much, and I  frantically brayed my best beagle bray  at them.  They soon realised I was not to be messed with.

Up in Top Field I decided to have a comfort break just inside the gate, which meant She would have to carry the little black bag all round Top Field, Top Top Field and The Field Above Top Field as there aren’t any poo bins up there.  She grumbled a lot and decided to leave the little black bag on a branch to collect on the way back.  On our way back from Top Top Field, who did I see in the distance but the three collies that frighten me so much.  They were wandering around looking for their tennis balls, but I felt sure they had evil intent towards me so barked and barked.  She said I made a ridiculous fuss and shouted at me.

To pay her back for this, I waited until She had completed a circuit of Top Field and was back by the gate, then refused to move.  Much yelling and blowing of the whistle ensued and I was perfectly aware that She was waving a bit of sausage at me across the field, but I still refused to move.  I pretended there was something interesting on the ground.  Eventually She had to stamp all the way back up Top Field to get me, swearing and muttering, and do you know what She shouted to the three collies’ Pack Leader?  “Beagle for sale.”  The rudeness.  Then we had to stamp all the way back to the bottom of Top Field (do keep up) to collect the black bag hanging on the bushes.  Despite the beautiful autumnal day, the mood had changed somewhat and She said ‘I  need a bldygin never mind a bldycupoftea.’

Today is November 13th, and it is a VERY special day.  It is the anniversary of my very first blog!  Yes!  Some of you have been reading this drivel for a whole year!  I can’t believe that a year later, I am still full of wonderful words and insight.  Those of you who have only recently started reading my blog – the first six months are available as a book.  I know!  In the past twelve months I have published a book as well as writing my blog and trashing the kitchen at every available opportunity.  And rolling in fox poo. Also in the last year, we have sadly lost Rocco the Inspirational Three-legged Labrador, and our beloved Grandad.  Lad smashed his GCSEs and with his friends has discovered a game called Orange Squash Pong – I think it’s orange squash, anyway – and Young Lad has developed his Food Technology skills.

Happy Anniversary dear, dear Friends and thank you so much for reading my musings for all this time. 

Russell

Golden Brown

golden brown What a glorious autumnal weekend it has been here, Readers.  Yesterday’s long walk was to the rhythm of ‘Golden Brown’ by the Stranglers circa 1981 as the wondrous colours of the leaves made She think of this.  She stomped up the fields singing this in her head but didn’t appear to consider what the lyrics actually mean as I have a feeling it’s not a song about the shades of autumn.

There was a large heron at the river yesterday.  This meant we had to stand still and ooh and aah over it, as it flew off.  I found it very tedious.

Anyway, it was an extra-long walk yesterday due to the lack of exercise and fresh air during the week – I’d had plenty, obviously, but didn’t get any say in the matter.  We went over the bridge into Top Field, then up into Top Top Field, and THEN, Readers, in a very unusual throwing of caution to the wind, we went into The Field Above Top Top Field!!  Oh, it was refreshing to deviate from the humdrum route of our normal walk.  The Field Above Top Field is actually nicer than Top Top Field as it is grassy and smooth rather than full of ten foot thistles.  Really I was quite exhausted by this marathon and wanted to take a short cut home, but this wasn’t allowed and I was dragged for a full four and a half miles.

You would think any sane person would call it a day on the dog-walking front, but no – as dusk fell I was dragged out again to go round the Rec.  This time we knocked for dear, dear Ebony down the road and took her with us.  Ebony wasn’t allowed off the lead, however, in case she decided to play silly beggars and run off like she did the last time we took her out.  Poor, poor Ebony, having to trot round the Rec on her lead.  Very restrictive.

Finally I was allowed to go home and rest from this exhausting day.  I slept upside down in my chair all evening, and even when my feet and legs kept violently twitching, I failed to rouse.  In fact, when I was told to leave my chair and go out to the garden for a comfort break at bedtime, I growled and snapped at everyone.  They still made me go.

It beggars belief, Readers, that on a rare Sunday where nobody has to get up early, Young Lad’s alarm clock went off at the usual silly time.  This annoyed me intensely as I was heavily asleep on Young Lad’s bed at the time.   How hard can it be to turn your ruddy alarm clock off on a Saturday night?  I was so cross and glared at Young Lad so that he got the message.  Then, mere  minutes later as I had fallen back into a heavy sleep, the hot water system clicked on and did its occasional impression of Concorde landing – I have never heard banging and crashing like it.  Really you would think they would get a plumber out – the system clearly needs a powerflush and I’ve tried to tell them this several times.  It was a hideous racket.

Gingercat then decided to start his ridiculous yowling from the kitchen and it was just too much for a Sunday morning.  She was in such a mood after all this disturbance that a trip to Costalotta with the newspaper was needed to recharge the batteries. 

It was Remembrance Sunday today and I like to show respect as much as the next man, so while we were up in Top Top Field we stood still at 11am for two minutes.  At least She stood still and was reflective, and I tried to but there was an interesting smell in the bushes which I had to investigate.

We took dear Ebony with us again this morning for a super-long walk.  Ebony is the size of a small horse and her legs are five times the length of mine, and I really do find it tricky to keep up.  Ebony had to stay on the lead again, as it was Top Field in which she played silly beggars and ran off for forty minutes last time, so I just trotted along behind, trying my hardest to keep up with what is essentially a racehorse.  Excited by our discovery yesterday of The Field Above Top Top Field, we went back up there and did a circuit.  By the time we crawled back up the road towards home, we had done another four miles and I really was beginning to feel quite faint.

Lad was encouraged to leave his bed at lunchtime with a cup of tea, but I feel this is harsh as Lad was very tired from being out with his friends the night before.  Lad was not completely grateful for the cup of tea and I can see his point, to be honest.  I’ve had a good sniff around in Lad’s room today as there is all sorts of rubbish in there and I’m fairly sure his school bag has some sandwiches from last week in it.  I’m just waiting until nobody is looking.

This afternoon has been very peaceful.  Young Lad had to do Art homework, Lad has done some work too (yes!), and She was busy doing a millionbldyjobs.  He has been out all day.  So there I was, having a wonderful sleep and enjoying the smell of lemon drizzle cake from the oven,  when I heard my lead being jangled again and off we went for the Dusk Walk with Ebony.  This time Ebony was hilariously funny as she managed to wriggle out of her halti collar AND her main collar, and ran off laughing.   It was very amusing.  She had to shout “sausage” very loudly indeed which got some strange looks from the men putting the football nets away, but eventually it had the desired effect and Ebony was re-collared.  She’s such a laugh, is Ebony.

Some of the lemon drizzle cake has been taken round to Lovelyneighbourontheright to thank them for letting me in the garden on Friday, and playing fetch with me.  They did snitch on me, telling She that I growled at them and wrinkled my nose when they tried to get me off Young Lad’s bed, but there you are.

I, of course, haven’t been given any lemon drizzle cake.  Nor was there a Sunday roast today – standards are slipping again.  Instead a curry has been made and eaten on the sofa tonight – sloppy.  But I suppose I have benefited from this as the popadums have made a mess all over the upholstery which I will clear up.

It must be bedtime soon, I’m worn out.

See you soon,

Russell

 

Ready meal

3755E36100000578-3744928-Macaroni_cheese_is_never_going_to_be_considered_a_health_food_bu-m-59_1471529384729 Last night, Readers, I was very lucky indeed.  Due to someone’s indolence after a ‘busy week’, dinner consisted of ready meals and a few ageing vegetables.  This meant that I was allowed to clear out the ready meal plastic trays – oh happy day!  There were two macaroni cheese and one lasagne – to be honest I preferred the latter as there was some meat to it, but beggars can’t be choosers and being allowed to clean out THREE ready meal trays was such a treat!  There was not a speck of bechamel or cheese sauce left on them by the time I’d finished.  I do pride myself on a high standard of work as you know.

Well.  What a turn-up for the books that was.  It had all been a little disappointing up until then, as Young Lad thought he was making macaroni cheese in Food Tech yesterday and we were all looking forward to the results immensely.  Imagine our distress when Young Lad came home from school and said he’d got the wrong week and that macaroni cheese is next week.  My heart sank, I can tell you.  What a good job She popped into the supermarket on the way home from the busy week at work and bought a substitute.  Poor Young Lad – there he was, all geared up for making a lumpy cheese sauce and over-cooking some pasta, only to be told he was a week early.  

Apart from that yesterday was pretty good.  I went to dear Ebony’s house for daycare having been to dear Pippa’s for the previous two days.  There I have been loved and cared for, while my own family choose to be out at school or work all day. It’s so hurtful. 

Today on the other hand was unusual.  Everyone was at school or work as normal, but neither Ebony NOR Pippa were able to look after me!  Oh the panic.  Of course they can’t leave me in the house on my own for any length of time as I go through the cupboards, find things to eat and generally chuck everything over the floor.  What to do?  Well of course – the same as we always do.  Rely on the neighbours.  So Lovelyneighbourontheright was roped in to letting me in the garden this morning – but as Lovelyneighbourontheright happens to be very lovely as her name implies, she not only let me in the garden for a comfort break but stayed out there and played fetch with me!!!  I know!  When does ANYONE from my own family play fetch with me?  Oh how I laughed and ran round the garden, carefree and happy that I was actually having some attention.  Then Lovelyneighbourontheright had to go home so that was the end of that.

In a pang of conscience, She had left me with a large guilt bone this morning so at least I had that to gnaw on for a bit.  Eventually I tired of this, and wandered round the house to find something to do.  Nobody had shut the bathroom door in their haste this morning, so I went in and emptied the bin over the floor, eating a few disgusting things as I went.  It made quite a mess.  It was funny.

Then I went for a kip on Young Lad’s bed.  Nobody had made the beds before dashing out to work this morning – slovenly – which annoyed me as I like to sleep on a nicely made bed, but anyway I made do with the scrunched up duvet and made sure I walked some mud over it.  (Gingercat was fast asleep on one of the other beds – this is how he spends his days.)  Anyhow I was exhausted from gnawing the bone and trashing the bathroom bin so I slept heavily and soundly for the rest of the morning.

This annoyed  me, Readers.  After lunch, Lovelyneighbourontheright came round again to put me back in the garden.  I had no intention of leaving the bed.  She called me, and promised me a biscuit and tried to bribe me with all sorts, but I refused to come downstairs.  Then Lovelyneighbourontheright had to come upstairs and try to drag me bodily off the bed but I simply put all my weight against her and wouldn’t give in.  Lovelyneighbourontheright conceded defeat and left me in peace.  Honestly.

Later this afternoon, once He and Young Lad were home, our peace was shattered yet again by the arrival of a new tumble dryer.  Really, the never-ending saga of white goods in this house gets on my nerves.  So of course there was a huge van outside in the road that I had to bark at, then two sinister -looking delivery men stealing our broken tumble dryer that I had to bark at and then the same two sinister-looking delivery men bringing in a new one.  I barked at them again and they soon got the message.

It is Friday night, Readers, and Lad is out with his friends in a town far away doing the sort of things that people of Lad’s age tend to do.  Sometimes She flares her nostrils when She thinks about this.  It’s Slovenly Pizza night here on the sofa and I’ve been given diddly squat despite a lot of the silly high pitched whining that worked so well last week.  I’ve noticed a large bar of Cadburys’ Dairy Milk in the bag on the kitchen floor – with luck Young Lad will be bringing that in for a Friday night treat soon, and I will do some more whining and begging.

Yet again I’m in for some hideously long walks over the weekend as She has missed the fresh air and exercise this week – I don’t see why I have to be dragged for miles up and over fields to make up for this.  It’s hardly my fault!  Neither was the problematic flatulence I had last evening, which happened to be abnormally loud but it didn’t necessitate all the snorting and laughing.  They are so immature.

Meghan Markle’s beagle isn’t laughed at in this horrid way.  Come on, Meghan, hurry up and finish reading my book and get in touch with me.

Bye for now,

Russell