So much to tell you after this weekend...
It was part two of our Schauzerfest walks, and yesterday we headed down to one of my favourite places in the whole wide world. West Wittering.
The journey there was enough to put the fear into any dog walker as the heavens opened and the wind picked up. We probably aquaplaned down most of the M27, and I was slightly concerned that the dogs might need a set of armbands each for the seaside walk. The husband had promised me fish and chips on the beach before the walk (he knows how to keep me happy, and he is also trying to make amends for the slasher job on the hedge), and we eventually found a chippy which was daft enough to open on a Sunday. We were going to eat it on the beach, but as the weather had taken a turn for the worst (hard to believe I know - but even the seagulls were sitting in the bus shelter) we decided to 'eat in'..
So, faces fed, we headed off to the beach. One by one, the cars turned up, spilling their contents of schnauzers onto the sand. The rain had gone, the sun was out, and schnauzers were walking. Walking for those less fortunate than themselves, whose lives are put on hold until they are scooped up by DBARC (http://www.dbarc.org.uk/) and prepared for a new life of love and cuddles.
Percy and Reg were released into the melee of dogs, and the husband muttered something about me watching one and him watching the other. Well, it's very tricky keeping an eye on your own dog, when there's around 98 others who look very similar. I got confused as the walk carried on (this is what I told the husband, I was in fact chatting to all and sundry), and three quarters round, we realised that we had both been watching Reg. Percy, it would appear, having completely forgotten about Polly and Ruby (Saturday's conquests were now a distant memory) had headed off into the sand dunes with Hugo. Unfortunately, Hugo is one of four brothers, and I'm not sure that his owner registered that there was one more in the pack.
Those of you who remember reading about the last West Wittering walk (Me and you and a dog named who?) will recall the love that sprung up between Percy and Hugo in January. I remember the shock at realising that Percy was setting out his stall for a chap, but as time has gone on, I've learned to accept that he's none too picky where love is concerned. Oddly, he's stayed with the same dogs each walk, so you could never call him fickle. Confused maybe..
So we made some lovely new friends over the weekend, and not just the four legged variety either. This is the great thing about dog owners. We all accept that we will wear a practical coat with poo bags and spare change in one pocket, while the other is filled with treats. We will have one walking boot which has been viciously sucked by a bored puppy, and our once clean jeans will have a pattern of paw prints which just about stretch to thigh level.
I've just loved this weekend. Loved being part of something so special and rewarding.
And as we pulled back into the drive last night, with two knackered dogs, even the massacred hedge looked alright.
They must have been bloody good chips, that's all I'm going to say...