(This was on Lake Superior when we crossed Canada.)
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
This weekend was our very first dog show in the Maritimes. It was a pretty fun time and people were very friendly - especially the Ridgeback exhibitors (that makes a nice change). It was 4 shows held in 2 days which made it long and tiring but easier on the pocketbook than 4 shows over 4 days.
I'll start with beautiful and brilliant Leeloo. She got Reserve Winners the very first time she went in the ring, she was a little suspicious about why the judge was touching her bum but she stood fairly still. Unexpectedly we won Best Puppy in Group because ... we were the ONLY hound puppy! So off to Best Puppy in Show and although she was still a little bewildered she handled the stress very well. She was definitely not sure why there was a white fluffy Samoyed following her all the time though!
The second show the judge exclaimed how pretty she was as we did our first go round and then awarded Miss Legs her very first 2 point win. I was so pleased with my little Bubby. Of course, we won BPIG again by default and again we headed into Best Puppy In Show. It had been a long day but Leeloo was such a good girl and the judge, when she was going to present the award, said everyone had very nice puppies "... but can I take the Ridgeback home?" I sort of stood a moment and thought "Wha ...?" And then realized she intended to give Leeloo Best Puppy in Show! The win was made more significant by the fact that this judge, Janet Buchanan, has bred Ridgebacks, Deerhounds and more recently Salukis (under the Auldstane prefix) so she knows her hounds. I honestly don't think any other judge, who was not familiar with hounds, would have given Leeloo a second glance(in fact that is what happened the balance of the weekend).
Not to be completely outshone by the little starlet ... Raimi won breed the first three shows, placed third in group at the third show but lost breed to a very nice specials bitch the last show. When I realized the judge was checking rears I knew we were done and let's face it - Raimi's rear assembly is not his fortune! He showed great for me the whole weekend though and I really intended it to be a practice to see how best we would work together - we have a few glitches to work out but in all I think he was a very good boy. People were telling me though how obvious it is that he just adores me ... sigh.
Leeloo, to complete the weekend, won absolutely nothing the next two shows! We started calling her Lee-loser. She didn't even win the puppy group as there was a little dachshund puppy entered in the Sunday shows. Ah well, it simply meant we could leave early on Sunday as we had a long drive and were really tired.
In all it was a pretty great weekend to start our stint in the Maritimes ... here they are after the first show and Leeloo is thinking about pulling that ribbon into the pen to eat. Raimi looks stricken, "Where's my ribbon?" He got his the next day so he's happy now ... his is yellow though. We'll see what other colors we can bring home in the future.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
He progressed to higher ground in the hopes he could get a better view and be safer at the same time. High ground is an advantage after all. I especially like how his neck has telescoped out but he's no where near the edge of the water. Can't take chances you know. This is where the rock startled him when it did ... nothing. That is some kinda scary. I think, and I could be wrong, a wave lapped against it but since the water is so calm I could be mistaken. He stood and stared at it for some time. I think in the end he determined it was just as scared of him as he was of it and they left it at a cautious truce. He gave it a wide berth when we moved on down the beach. Next time though ... that rock is totally gonna get it.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
The first photo it took of the dogs. They are waiting on the deck for me to get their collars so we can go for a walk.
The tide was going out so there was a little island surrounded by water. The walk to the island meant I had to go through about 18 inches of water and after a moment of thought Raimi and Leeloo followed me and discovered water glee.
They put Archer and Halo to shame. Archer had an excuse due to his size. Halo is just Halo ...
Archer's face says it all really. If you can see it. That's my parents and Halo in the background. I haven't called Halo to me yet. Much hilarity ensued when I did. Halo minced her way to me, Raimi went out to meet her with much splashing and carrying on ... to her horror. I didn't get a photo of her on her way back to the beach because I was laughing too hard, it was priceless.
So far I'm pretty happy with the little camera - I'll fiddle with the settings more and see what I can get out of it. Really, I felt naked without a camera ... so weird. Tomorrow I'll regale you with the salty tale of Raimi vs Creature from the Black Lagoon.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
This is the postcard image of the east coast.Of course the dogs roughhoused for part of the time ... they don't care about the view. Often though they spend most of their time sniffing, wandering and simply exploring - I think they cue off of my mood a lot when we're there. Halo was way back behind me in her own little world of exploration, eating various tidbits she'd found on the seaweed from the high tide. She keeps tabs on me but as long as I can still see her I let her do her own thing. That's probably part of the reason I don't have any photos of her this time, she was always waaaaaay off in the distance.
Of course the day my camera dies is the day where there were so many photo ops I was going mental not being able to take any. The Herons stayed put for us to walk past, get within about 30 feet, and the dogs to walk about 5 feet into the water to 'get a closer look'. The Herons simply stood and watched us. Perhaps they've seen Ridgebacks before and knew they were safe if they stayed in the water. They eventually flew off one by one, not by harassment from the dogs, I think they simply got bored watching us, or the fish weren't plentiful, so they opened their great wings and silently skimmed the surface of the water for about 200 feet before turning inland. Leeloo took off down the beach after one of them and as it flew over her head I think I could hear it laughing.
I did get one photo that I just love to pieces. Of course it would be of The Boy and if my camera did take its last gasp yesterday I'm very glad to at least have this photo as a keepsake. To me it possesses the Periodic Table of beautiful.
Monday, June 22, 2009
What I have noticed in the last few days is that the dogs smell ... really nice. Kind of like fresh laundry. They haven't had a bath in 5 weeks so I can't say it's the lingering scent of dog shampoo. Even Archer, who is losing that divine puppy aroma, smells like he just came off the wash line.
It's a sort of soft, pleasant, warm hay kind of scent and I like to bury my nose in the folds of their necks and breathe deeply. They think I'm full of extra love which works out well for everyone.
Speaking of baths for the dogs; both Raimi and Leeloo will get a dose this Thursday for a show we're attending this weekend in Canning, NS. It's a limited entry show so the entry is quite small, as they usually are here in the Maritimes, but I am looking forward to more pleasant Ridgeback competitors(there were great people in Alberta but the rotten apple spoils the barrel as it were) and seeing what the east coast show scene has to offer.
It's Leeloo's very first show ever and she will be almost 10 months old - kind of late to start a show career. She attended a show when she was 5 months old to get used to the atmosphere but she hasn't ever been in the ring. The combination of her age, the litter, and the move timed out so that I was not able to get her into a show before now. We'll see what Atlantic Canada thinks of my white footed, light wheaton, Ridgeback/gazelle ballerina.
I also entered Raimi as a special. Hee hee. I have to smile whenever I envision how this is going to go. See, I will be showing Leeloo in the classes, there are 3 class bitches entered so I'll be in and out a couple times. Without The Boy. I'm not sure how he is going to handle watching me show another dog, giving her treats, cooing at her, and running around the ring with her. My mom is helping and I already told her to have a really good grip on him when I take Leeloo in. He is going to go mental with joy when he realizes that I will also be taking him in the ring. It won't help that he hasn't been in the ring in almost a year - he needed to grow up, grow a brain(faint hope) and I do not believe in campaigning dogs under two years old; showing to a championship fine ... specialing ... no.
So in a few days we'll take this circus on the road and see how it plays out - it's 4 shows in 2 days so both dogs will get ample opportunity to make asses of themselves and me.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Today was hot. Hot hot hot. I did some work in the yard prior to 11am and was sweating up a storm. After a quick trip into New Glasgow I decided to head to the beach for a jaunt with the dogs. What a trip.
We made it to the beach, it was sweltering and there was almost no wind. Not as cool as I'd hoped but we made the most of it and I actually caught two of the dogs in the water at the same time.
Halo attempted a dip but it was short lived. You can't see the disgust on her face but I guarantee it's there. We were there about 20 minutes when I decided it was enough. The dogs were being driven to distraction by big horseflies which BITE, it was way hotter than usual and we fought our home way through the dust, stopping briefly to photograph whatever these birds are. We arrived home and everyone had a nap ... including me. Ah bliss.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Today we took a break from renovation adventures to head out to the beach again. It is just beautiful here right now with clear sunny skies, temperatures hovering just below 2o degrees and light wind. With a south facing backyard the temperature can seem higher so at about 2:30pm we headed down to the beach because it's always cooler there than here.
The dogs know of course when they get in the truck that we're heading somewhere fun so they act like asses. Leeloo and Archer yowl and wookie at each other for at least half the trip and Halo and Raimi are noses to the wind, lips flapping, ears flying and eyes half shut in concentration. Today though I caught Archer's nose taking in the smells too, he had his paws up on the edge of the window pane and his big ol' ears were flapping away. He looked like he was in heaven. I suppressed mild panic and eeked the window up a scootch. Don't need another Petal or Halo event. It's just adorable though how he tries so hard to copy what the big dogs do not knowing how small he is ... or how big he'll get.
It was an incredibly relaxing walk with gentle waves rolling in, the tide was high but there was still plenty of sand to walk on. I took off my flip flops and walked in the sand for about a kilometre and the dogs meandered along with me, none of us were in a hurry to anything but absorb the sun and silence.
I came across a few empty crab bodies and skirted them quickly - don't need Leeloo ingesting that sort of thing. Also, it's the beach where you can't take anything away with you.
Raimi was doing something fascinating and I'm curious to find out what it was. He'd trot along nose to the ground, suddenly stop and dig like mad for a moment, shove his nose deep into the hole and sniff deeply. After a moment he'd lose interest and trot to the next hole digging frenzy. Once he dug like crazy, stopped, and (I swear) he tilted his head like he was listening to something and then shoved his nose in for an extra good snort. I'll be honest, it freaked me out a little. What the hell is down there? There are little holes all over the beach and I think there are things living down there waiting for the next tide to roll in but I don't know what they are. He never did dig deep enough to find anything except when he unearthed a little tiny shrimp who looked horrified to be so rudely exposed. I let it be. Maybe it's the little shrimp things he can smell and ... hear?
We walked along the beach to where the sand ended and turned into rocks so we explored the rocky shore a little. As we approached where the coast curves I stopped to watch the dogs and enjoy the moment. Halo was way ahead of course lost in the new smells and the other three were picking their way along stopping to sniff interesting crevices. I looked beyond the dogs to the ocean and spied a log in the water with a bird on it about 20 feet off the coastline. I was just making up my mind to go and see what birds they were(highly likely they would be seagulls) when the log walked out of the water.
I swear I just about had a heart attack. Three deer, one at a time, walked carefully out of the water and disappeared into the trees at the top of the cliff. Man ... when a person needs a camera. I hastily recalled Halo who was the closest to the deer and we headed back the way we'd come. I'm not sure if the deer were just in the water cooling off or, I know it sounds totally insane, if they swam from Pictou Island which you can see from the shore but come on now ... it's freakin' far to swim. I am 99% sure they were swimming into the shore when I saw them, they weren't drinking, it's salt water, and I am not sure deer use water to cool down, besides which, it wasn't that hot really. It was so weird.
So that was today ... tomorrow looks much the same. How ever will I cope?