I’ve just had a few weeks at home, in part for a break from work but mainly to support the Dearest One who had, up until I got back, been the sole survivor of the puppy invasion via our Super dog Kallie. Oh brother was I in for a shock…………….but more on that later

Three Airports, long haul flights and 20 hours of travel takes its toll directly from a day’s work and goodbyes back in the office. By the time the Dearest One has finally decided that she will pick me up from the train station I am ready for one thing?? ZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzz

But not this time!!!

To pick me up from the station was the Dearest One of course (after a bout of “what’s in it for me if I pick you up”) and alongside her was her trusty friend and from the Italy trips her driving colleague and companion. We’d never met before although I had heard all the stories!!! And yes, this one is well documented from both Italy trips.

Said friend was of course another multi Spin owner and I have to say a good all round egg when it came to dealing with me.

I have to be a good boy as I know she will read this!!!!

So for the record and before I write anymore – it was great to have met you and I thoroughly enjoyed the company and the laughs over those couple of days. (Phew……….now I can write in peace and without conscience)!!!

Well, here I am then……..home at last. Lovely weather, meet and greet the dogs……30 minutes, review small brown and white ish four legged fat little blobby things………5 minutes,
The Dearest One? “OK, now you’re here this is the list of jobs you’re to complete along with ‘assisting me’ with the brood” – “now get changed, you’ve got work to do”!!!!!!
(Now remember I’m tired and at this point had NOT noticed anything out of the ordinary)

But first it was the all important………….cup of tea, sit down with Dearest One and buddy and get the local gossip, so I’m up to speed on people places and things – and don’t let anyone tell you that the countryside is a peaceful place!! Not with our locals it isn’t. They are the epitome of gossip and fun and a great laugh and the list of characters almost endless.

I then decide to go on walkabout around the place and take the dogs out with me. I spend time with JJ catching up on Spin gossip and to see if there is anything new from Woofyleaks and generally to see if I can input to anything troubling him.

It’s a good return for me………..he’s happy

So, it’s good to be back!!
The Dearest One had prepared my list of to do’s which to be fair was quite reasonable and enabled me some free time between midnight and 5am.

The following day was one of catch up on local events and to understand the regime with the puppies which was more or less what I expected and not being an expert in this area drew advice from the one that must be obeyed at all times (All Hail)

Following a ‘suggestion’, I got in the room with the pups (and yes they had their own room) in order I get to know them? Familiarize myself as it were. Fine with that and no issues!!!!

But there was an issue………..how the hell does 8 mini spins poo that much?? For the next couple of weeks I was assistant poo collector and get rid oferra. I cannot work out why those pups did not grow smaller by the day let alone bigger.

You know, one morning I worked out on a piece of newspaper (unsoiled) that if each pup ate say a small bowl of food at each of four feeding sessions then how come it seemed to poo a big bowl after each session. I was stunned that the math’s didn’t work……how the hell do they grow up with more coming out than going in??

I take my hat off here to the Dearest One (A moment of Praise) who diligently and routinely kept that puppy area not just clean but very well kept for those pups well before my arrival home. They were not hard work, as so much you had to be consistent and reliable with everything.
After a while I got used to it, go in puppy room, all eight charge over to your feet (that’s all they can manage to do) then all eight chew your feet regardless of footwear, you try to walk to discover all eights teeth (very sharp one’s) have attached themselves to: a) your shoe b) your sock c) your skin – and it does not stop there?

I bend down to start the paper changing process, and bored with the feet they now go for the hands and arms and those mini claws on those big feet?? are Sharp, and like the Dearest One I ended up looking like I had been in a one sided hedge fight.

But over a couple of days I turned this all into a bit of fun?? So if you’re breeding your Spin or whatever else and are using paper as a litter bed, I would like to suggest the following:

1. Do not just put the paper down to get the job done?
2. Select the clean newspaper you intend to use
3. Go through the newspaper quickly and note the page 3 girl, the footballer, the politician, the nasty person or if there’s a picture of someone you dislike for whatever reason…
4. Then place these sheets on the floor, picture side up
5. The page 3 girls were for me to look at apart from the pups
6. Then I would check every hour or so (relative) to see which of my favourite!!! Football stars, politicians, bankers etc have been shi(sorry) pood on from a short height
7. If they went the time without being pood on then fine, but some got pood on twice!!
8. Choose your favorite celebrity and see if they’re in more than one paper, more chance they get pood on…….

There are of course no prizes as to who gets pood on first or pood on the most. It’s just for fun!!!

You know, throughout the first couple of days I was at home the Dearest One’s friend was ambling around with a camera. No use of course when it came to puppy sitting!!! But she was a guest and I was under the threat of exclusion from breathing again if I was in any way naughty.
OK fine, but the camera?? A very nice one as well and I did wonder (but dare not ask of course) if she knew what she was doing with it?

It came to pass that our guest and that camera then went on to provide me with a little more of my imaginative moments………….but before all that? There’s this……

A while ago I wrote somewhere in one of the Bankers notes about Kallie being on heat and me being threatened with nominal violence if I let the dogs out WITH Kallie……….I didn’t of course, but it was VERY close.

So why this time did I also come home to discover Savanna was on heat and the same rules applied again. Well OK then I didn’t exactly discover that Savanna was on heat I was ‘reminded’ that my return back to work depended on ME keeping the dogs from the bitch as it were.
Oh no not again……………..

So let’s have a look at what we have then for me to contemplate on having been home for just 24 hours:

Guest 1 (Be a good boy and do not upset her – people don’t understand you and that’s why we had to move here, remember?)

Guest 2 (I did not know about this until Guest 2 actually arrived – another Spin buddy but this one I knew, and well!!! Guest 2 encourages me to be jolly naughty and bring over sized amounts of a non healthy substance through our wonderful border control)

I know I know Dear, be a good boy when you write all this up……be nice to the people

Dinner at night and guess who was the Gordon Ramsey for the night?? Gordon Bleu Banker…..
Oh yes and of course despite my ban they consumed copious amounts of wine…………
The Italians have a lot to answer for.

Eight mini spins

Savanna on heat

A poo factory to logistically operate a clean, remove and dispose service to………

Oh yes and one more thing? I still had my, to do list………..

Other than that the first few days were a piece of Cake!!!

Oh god, I nearly forgot. That wasn’t all it was….

In the garden we have a very substantial timber framed Rabbit run where once upon a time a rabbit run!!

The rabbit passed peacefully away (honest)

So the rabbit run has been empty for some time. That is until (enter stage right) the Grimbles from next door decided it would be really good to put some chickens in there!!!

The introduction to the Grimbles in the Bankers Notes has just been a matter of time. They are the Dearest One’s parents and for want of a better description live next door to us. With another generation added to the script they offer another dimension to my tales of life.

They are a great source of several things!!! Exasperation, alcohol, cakes, teas, sandwiches, dog sitting occasionally, laughs, frustration, a bowl of sugar, tea bags and so on.

We are often up in their place of abode for tea breaks and a chat. They are not what you might call 21st century which to an extent I admire. They have mobile phones that are so dated we could sell them to a museum. What’s more, if we send them an SMS they don’t know how to access it!!!!! and, if they could access it?? They don’t know how to reply!!! By implication there is no laptop or PC and in turn for tea and biscuits they rely on the Dearest One to book their playgrounds when they go away on their trips. Oh yes they drive as well……they used to tow a caravan until a while ago but sensibly gave it up after 15,987 complaints from those stuck behind them. The BBC broadcast traffic congestion updates when they went on the road with that thing in tow.

But good fun they are………….

The chicken’s are their latest venture!!

Fresh eggs and all that, and if they don’t lay the eggs they demand, then they have fresh chicken put on the menu. The psychological affect on the chickens has had two effects?? 1) They are laying eggs out of fear (you should see the look on their faces) and 2) if one lays an egg another will sit on it so they’re not the one dragged off to the kitchen kicking and screaming because they look as if they laid it, but didn’t (I added the latter for affect)

As for the dogs I suspect they have their own views on the Grimbles, but they tolerate them and I once saw one of them stroking a Spin (The Grimble of course, not the chicken)……….this was rare and I wished I’d have had my camera to capture the moment.

But when the pups were being born they were superstars!!! Despite the eccentricities – Grimbles, we salute you.

Now me wanting camera to capture Grimble stroking Spin moment also runs true to our friend that was with us. Remember her?? Well she did have a camera and the weather being so nice she stalked the Red Kites.

We have quite a few around us and they are a daily source of entertainment and fabulous flyers. So it did not take much for our intrepid nature photographer to try and capture some of these moments with the Kites.

But……………..most nature photographers wear camouflage of some kind to blend in with the surroundings and give themselves a genuine opportunity to take some decent pictures, and it is no surprise then that our photographer was no different?

She worked hard to photograph the Kites at work rest and play - wearing bright PINK!!!!!!!!

She stood out more than a standing out thing…………I bet the Kites reason for flying around us in ridiculous patterns were because they were laughing their heads off…….

“Red one to leader – over”
“Come in Red one”
“Have you seen that human lunatic down there in pink trying to photo us - over”?
“Yes Red one, looks like a strawberry blancmange on legs - over”
“What tactics do we use Leader – over”
“Fly low away from it and keep straight, tease it rather than show off, then when it goes away we come out and do it properly” “Red one – do not attempt landing at this stage in the old oak tree – over”
“Will do leader and good plan, very annoying for it”
“By the way leader did you notice those odd looking rabbits down there? I counted about 8 of them and all very meaty and tasty looking”
“Yes Red one but they’re for another time and not so sure the humans would appreciate one of them hung on the branch in the old oak tree”
“Copy that leader and will leave alone – for now”!!!

Oh God, where was I? Oh yes our visitor on nature photography………

I did try to delicately suggest a change of attire but it fell on deaf ears. Nevertheless, undeterred she carried on regardless and eventually from what seemed like hundreds of shots taken we established that maybe one or two were pretty good!!!!

A couple of days later when our friend had left us to move onwards and upwards the Dearest One decided that it was time to introduce the pups into the ménage. They were 7 weeks old and full of life and we felt it would do them good.

And so it was to pass that just like Noah and the ark I was ‘requested’ to carry down to the ménage two pups at a time until they were all assembled in the big dogs playground.
Oh what fun they had……The Dearest One meanwhile carried HER camera down and proceeded to photo the mini spins at play.

Oh what joys and pleasures they bring and for once I was not following them around with a newspaper. Nor indeed was the ménage ground covered in newspaper. However, it went very quiet!!!!

The Dearest One summoned my attention and I duly ran over to her to see what the problem was?? She was looking up into the skies??

It was then I noticed that the Red Kites (4 of them) were circling overhead clearly viewing the ground contents of 2 humanoids and 8 small fat hairy potential food sources. The Dearest One told me to get the pups indoors………..no panic there then!!! I tried to explain that essentially they were carrion birds preferring dead meat – road kill etc. but when required would kill. The latter end of my sentence I desperately wanted to take back. I reassured her that whilst we were in with them they would be fine and that no Kite would come within a mile of us. Just as one glided slowly over our heads about 10 meters off the ground!!!

That did it!!! All hell broke loose………..the pups had to go back inside. Despite my protestations and attempts to convince otherwise, back inside they had to go. But how???
Two by two would not work as they would surely be exposed and I had visions of one being carried off over the trees with the Dearest One throwing stones at it (the Kite not the pup) I did tell her they were protected……..Stupid thing to say Banker. Stupid, stupid Banker……..
There was only one thing for it??

Put them ALL in the wheelbarrow and take them back to the house in that, and so I did and have the photo to prove it!!!!!!!

Panic over, it was time for tea.

BUT and it’s a big BUT…………..my little session in the ménage caused me some personal damage and whilst at the time I ignored it, I was alarmed to see that I had been bit by something??

When I was in the ménage with the pups I had remembered scratching my neck and then my arm. I took no notice at the time being busy with the pups and the Royal Red Kite corps flying overhead.

Looking in the mirror I noticed a considerable chunk of my neck missing leaving quite a sore behind. My arm near the elbow was the same, I went down to the ménage again to look around and amazingly a large ‘fly’ landed on my arm and proceeded to bite me, HARD. It was then I remembered the ‘sting’ I felt when I was down there earlier, but this was no sting, it was a bite.

Me, being me I decided to investigate and had by now got a good look at the perpetrator of this heinous crime against me.

I had been bitten by Haematopota pluvialis –literally ‘Blood-drinker of the rains’. Colloquially known as the Cleg. You may of course already know this species as the Horse fly.

Adult horse flies feed on nectar and sometimes pollen and are important pollinators. However, the females also require a blood meal to promote egg development (males lack the necessary mouth parts for blood feeding) The bite affects different people in different ways of course and for me it was now 3 large open sores. Whilst I kept the areas very clean it took two weeks before they were healed.

Oh yes and for future reference - it’s body is grey, with black longitudinal stripes, and the wings have a dark mottled pattern. If you do get to see the eyes!! They are large and multi coloured….but I don’t recommend getting that close. They hurt………..

So within the Bankers notes is a moment of drama!!!

Meanwhile back in the house………….

The daily, no I’m wrong, the hourly chatter was the Dearest One constantly referring to the ‘One’ she would keep for showing.

“Oh this one’s gorgeous but it’s got hair up its nose”

“This one is female and is perfect………except it’s too dark, too light, has the wrong expression”

“In the photo this one looked great but I’ve promised him to x people”

“oooooh this one is so show ring, but I can’t, no it wouldn’t be right it’s got too big, small, long, short, round, straight bits”

And so it went on…………

I would be questioned which one I thought we should keep??

Oh God you have to be joking don’t you?? They’re all the same for God’s sake………Stupid Banker, when will he ever learn.

There then proceeded an hour long lecture (with samples) of how each pup was different!!!
When I came round some time afterwards I decided I was best off outside doing some of the jobs from my list. So armed with all the big dogs off I went.

At this point forgetting one minor thing?????

I accidentally let Savanna (she of the heat) out with them all. Benny Hill moment

I got her back and impounded without too much fuss – at least that I’ll admit to here. But a sigh of relief and a smile and it was off to work as normal.

This lasted about 10 minutes as the Springer had found a bloody tennis ball, which meant only one thing. The retrieve the ball game……..the Springer is a 100% dead cert to win every time.
So I put him on a lead and me, JJ and Duncan played.

It was at this point that I noted Duncan never won and gave up. JJ was the victor. Duncan’s a bit special and a splendid dog. He can easily run with the pack and always does when we’re all out either at home or in the woods/park/beach. But Duncan can’t sprint – a kickback to his upbringing. So I employed two tennis balls, no Springer and with JJ doing long distance retrieving it gave me and Duncan plenty of time to retrieve his own ball at his own pace, and he loved it

JJ is a superb retrieve and bring it back to you literally at your feet. He really makes me laugh over something he taught himself because of the other dogs? You see he used to come back to you and drop the ball nearby where another Spin would pick it up and clear off with it. The Springer was another threat, as he would then pick it up and bring it to you even though he was 3 foot away!!

So JJ adopted the retrieve, bring it to your feet, keep in mouth then go down on all fours and place the ball under his mouth. I kneel down, he lifts his head and there is the ball.

He has seriously annoyed the others……….smug JJ

Mia plays as well!! But when she gets the ball you can’t have it back!! One throw and if she gets it – game over.

So now I was out with 3 tennis balls and this is getting stupid

Oh well, game over and time for a cup of poo……….Oh God, it’s getting to me all that poo collecting. Not to worry, I have my poo on the celebrity game, which amuses me each time I go back in the pup room and see who’s been pood on.

Well of course eventually the Dearest One chose ‘our’ pup.

And in doing so has set off another chapter in the Awelymor Spinone world. Said pup is a female and we have called her Freya.

Why not follow our pups progress in Freya’s Diary – written by yours truly. A weekly update for all to enjoy!!

Why not follow?? Well you may have better things to do, cut the grass, feed the cat, feed the dog, take the dog for a walk, or a run if it see’s the cat, feed the wife or husband, take the wife or husband for a walk to the park and let them off to run and play and bring the ball back. You could drive out somewhere and go running and jumping along the beach. Or just do what the Spins do? Chill out……………..

Until next time…………take care out there.



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