A Romp in the Country

Wet Dog

A very dirty, smelly once-upon-a-time pale Golden Retriever called Sophie returned from her weekly romp on Cleeve Hill with a gang of other canine ‘hooligans’. She’s let out of ‘boot camp’ once a week and will trample anyone to death who gets between her and the ‘little white van’ used by PetCarers to come and collect. Once on Cleeve Hill, there’s lots of nice smelly sheep and cow poo to roll in and eat and she comes back happy and green.  Needless to say, the first action on her return is a frog-march to the garden and a good hose-down before she’s allowed back into the house.  It’s a funny thing about Retrievers, ours at least, they love water and will swim, chase ducks etc. but a hosepipe makes their knees knock and they hunch up as though under attack!  Retrievers are also very good at looking sad and forlorn particularly if there are treats around, but once soaked and bedraggled she’d win an Oscar for pathos!

The other one romping, although out of the country, is daughter Charlotte, currently on the ‘coach trip from Hell’ on the continent. Taking a well-earned break from completing her probationary preparatory teaching year at Dulwich, she foolishly booked an ’18-35’s’ Continental Coach tour visiting a series of ‘cultural’ spots from Barcelona to Nice, Venice, Rome and across to Athens, thinking it would be with a like-minded group of youngish people she could communicate with and have a mutually good time. Unfortunately it didn’t work out that way. It was an Australian tour full of very young, hard-drinking, sunbathing youngsters just out of school/college determined to just have a ‘good time’ – drinking and sleeping. Very pleasant, but not quite the company Charlotte was seeking. She’s reached Nice and the end of her tether at the thought of being confined to a coachload of hungover Aussies and is now about to jump coach and do her own thing in France or Italy where she has contacts.  She might even stop at Verona and pick up an opera after our glowing reports…

What is it they say about not being in company of animals and children – they always steal all the scenes….

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