Merry Month of May

Early17b-001Woz out doing a bit of ball catchin at me new dog beach the other day and these rowdy lunatics turned up.

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Kite Surfing, me socks… ya just distracting me gullible Humans from chucking me ball so clear off the lot of ya!!

Alright it was actually pretty cool. Wish I could have a go, I’d be great at it as long as someone glued me paws to the board, I’d hold the kite in me jaws and away we would go heh heh…

 

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Any by the way as I was such a good prezzy opener last Christmas I have now formally been promoted to Chief Prezzy Opener!

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Here’s me in action on Curly Humans recent birthday.

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Only thing… I was certain there would be another ball in there for me like on me birthday last month but nadder… not a thing. Bit miffed about that since I did such a great job.

 

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But then… A ball – loon. And what the blazes is it doing up there just floating… This is kinda weird! I bet me Humans’ have stashed it up there just to tease me, rotter’s. Better get it none the less.

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Oh I know it’s filled with helium! That’s why it floats. I’ve seen Curly suck some out of these floaters to make her voice go all squeaky. If I just get a bite into the thing and I will bark like a chihuahua!

Until next time…

R

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Life’s A Beach

Just a short little blog today. Me and me Humans found a new dog friendly beach near Point Walter on the Swan River in Perth. Very quiet and peaceful. Just right for chucking and catching balls. Oh and of course swimming. So I thought I’d share a few pickies…

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OK, I’m ready!

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Shark! What shark?

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I’m outta here…
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Can’t hear you, dog busy here…

Me doing a great impression of pretending not to hear me Humans call for us to go.

Have a great week everyone.

R

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They Forgot Me Birthday!

First thing this morning I was pestering me Humans for prezzies and birthday food… Nothin… It was like it was just any other day!

I’m 5 years old now, 35 in ya human years…and it’s me Birthday today.

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That’s me on the left, the handsome dude next to me sis when I was 3 months old. My very first photo.

Born in Ireland under dubious circumstances that I don’t remember and my Humans don’t know about. They rescued me from a dog shelter in the New Forest of Southern England in 2012.

 

 

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This is getting serious! Me day wears on as everyone disappears, going about their business. I’m still waiting for me walk, birthday cake, me prezzies…. Still nothin…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boss Human comes home in the afternoon and I smell a rat. Well not literally obviously (well actually I do outside but that’s another story). There is a suspicious bulge in her bag and the smell of new packaging… could that be me prezzy?

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After she dumps her bag and while my Humans are occupied I take the opportunity to check it out. I stick me head in the said bag… Yep, an undeclared package that me as the self appointed “Border Collie er… Control… Officer”, better have a closer look at.

But before I can inspect the mysterious package I hear the W.A.L.K. words. Me dim Human think by spelling it I don’t know what they are talking about but I do. I immediately head “stage left” for the front door at high speed deftly picking up a ball as I go. As me usual enthusiastic squealing reaches a fever pitch, the front door is opened and I burst out, heading for the car.

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We take-off down the road towards the dog park but suddenly turn right instead of left.

Oy! Humans… Dog Park… other way… Me Humans mutter under their breaths “at least he has stopped squeaking”. Hey I don’t squeak, I’m just releasing my inner dog spirit when I’m on me way to the dog park!

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OK, we have come to Quarantine Park, I like Quarantine Park, and its sunsets are brilliant too. Not as many dogs here because in general you are not allowed off-lead but a nice view and I love chasing me ball as it rolls full-speed down the hill (My Humans cheat and let me off-lead if no ones around. Hope that pesky ranger doesn’t spot me).

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And… Oh look! There is a cake for me, you bloody Humans tricked me! But I love ya anyway. It’s made of me fav ingredients too. Tuna sandwiched between chicken and rice rolls and topped off with cheese. I better watch me weight after this one me thinks.

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Heh heh… I knew they wouldn’t forget me prezzies!

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It’s the dimming of the day as the sun sets over the Swan River so we decide to head home to greet me other Humans and of course open me prezzies and eat me cake too!

 

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Cake smelling good me Family!
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I’m not good at puffing out fires lit on cakes. Me Humans do it all the time…
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Now that’s what I’m talking about

This is good tucker,  I need this more often! Now to me prezzies…

 

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Hard work this opening prezzies but I think I’m about done. It seems I have another dumbbell type ball and some flying saucer thingy, not sure what that ones about yet. Love em!

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I think you will find… that’s mine mate!

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And that’s it for a great birthday that got off to a rocky start!

See ya soon

R

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A Border Collie’s European Summer Adventure, Part 6: Mostar Day Trip

The previous instalment on Dubrovnik’s Old Town is here.

Well, Mostar, what can I say… It’s beautiful, its vibrant, its where east meets west, where the European Union meets the old Ottoman Empire, where Christianity meets Islam, where a river divides and a bridge reunites.. Where one Border Collie met a mate… I could go on but the sense of deep history does pervade this place and even a dog can feel it.

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Me and me Humans set out for our days adventure from Dubrovnik quite early (for us) at around 9am thinking 2 or 3 hour trip to Mostar, no worries… Well the roads and Bosnian drivers (who are even worse than Croatian drivers and that’s saying something) conspired against us so what was supposed to be a lunch time arrival turned out to be an afternoon arrival. Oh well it was a fascinating trip through Bosnia-Herzegovina that’s for sure.

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Bosnia-Herzegovina is not a European Union member although it is a potential candidate within the next few years and EU investment here is huge.

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It needs it as the country is extremely poor by European standards.

Evidence of the Balkan wars and the breakup of Yugoslavia are everywhere.

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Ethnic divides show in defaced road signs where the Serbian Cyrillic writing system is crossed out in favour of the Latin script. The tensions with neighbouring Serbia are still very strong.

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Mostar Central Markets

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Mostar city centre is quite small and compact around the famous bridge with loads of really interesting markets and food stalls on both sides of the river, nothing tacky here.

 

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There were hardly any other dogs that I saw in Mostar but I did meet this guy and we became great mates for the day!

 

 

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OK, I’m on the Mostar Bridge, are we done?
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Get a move on, this thing looks like it will crumble any minute. It came down once before ya know…

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But is it safe?

Actually the bridge known as the Stari Most (meaning Old Bridge and origins of the cities name, Mostar) was rebuilt in 2004 based on the foundations of the original old bridge which was destroyed in 1993 by the Bosnian Croats during the Balkans conflict. There is a brief  YouTube video from the BBC of the bridge coming down here.

 

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Loads of tourists but where are the famous Bosnian boy divers diving into the river for money?

 

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“Don’t Forget”.

A poignant reminder of what happened here in 1993 and the continued conflicts in the rest of Bosnia-Herzegovina that lead to ethnic cleansing and finally culminated in the Srebrenica massacre of more than 8,000 mainly Muslim Bosniak men and boys in July 1995…

 

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Its interesting to see which countries pitched in to pay for the rebuilding of the Mostar Bridge…

 

 

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As is usual for us late in the afternoon, we crave some sustenance and this brilliant little restaurant, Babilon, perched on the bank of the Neretva River fit the bill perfectly as it allowed dogs in too, well at least on the outdoor tables.

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Now I just need to order off that spare menu, hand it over…

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Ba! Once again I get the scraps under the table… Excellent view at least.

 

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And that’s it folks, I wont bore you with the long haul home to Dubrovnik in the dark suffice to say we made it in one piece!

In my next instalment I think it’s time to move on from politics and conflicts and on a more positive note focus on me BC belly! I try mussels and oysters and visit the Great Wall of Croatia!

R

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Sunsets WA

Sorry Guys, I have been rather slack at blogging over the last month. So much has been happening in my real world that time has slipped through me paws…

I will be back in to it soon. Here in the mean time are a few choice pickies of those incredible Indian Ocean and West Coast sunsets that Perth is lucky enough to see almost every day. I never saw anything like this in my days in Europe.

Enjoy!

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Swimming at sunset eh… who knew the pleasures of this when living in land-locked Frankfurt!

Take Care All

R

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The Rhine – Kaub to St Goar

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This is my final part of a little journey up the Rhine. We cross the river at Kaub as I mentioned under great stress a week ago on this doggy car ferry thingy..

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Now we have a gentle winding road through colorful villages along the Rhine to our destination, Saint Goar

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Humans take note please!

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Yet another castle. Boy those olden day Humans loved their castles eh. My Humans say they were mostly to lord over the river and extort tolls from travelers.

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A popular dude in St Goar. Will have to ask my Humans about him but I think he was the Monk the town was named after…

The best bit of visiting St Goar is the walk up to Castle Rheinfels which has great views from high above the Rhine. It’s an easy walk and the views and food from the outdoor bistro are brilliant (if you can beg, borrow or steal it from your humans that is, some techniques on that here).

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Castle Rheinfels

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Awesome views as you sip your beverages

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The descent through the vineyards are pretty good for views too.

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It’s a bit of a fixer-upper-a when you go around the back of the castle though, just saying…

Of course you also have legendary Loreley just over on the other side of the river from Saint Goar. We didn’t go to that side of the river on this trip so no pictures but I thought it worth a mention as you Humans seem to love the legend. As a dog I really don’t get this but what I heard was that a maiden used to lure sailors to their death on the rocks there by singing songs, go figure eh… It is a very deep and narrow part of the Rhine, very tricky navigation so I guess sailors have had a few issues there over the years. You can read  a bit about Loreley on the Rhine, check out this web site.

R

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Up A Hill In Eppstein

We went on a family test drive outing in the new car last Sunday.

Eppstein Germany  Eppstein is a nice little town in the Main-Taunus-Kries region near Frankfurt.

Speed Camera Eppstein  Grumpy-Human moans about it because he has to drive through it every day on his way to work and there is a speed camera there set to go off if you go 0.0001 km/h over the 50 km/h limit (he says) and he has had 7 tickets already to prove it!

Eppstein Castle   But as Grumpy-Human puts it: “It’s a bloody toll collection scheme! Just like in the robber-baron days when Eppstein Castle was built”

Did you know (and this is from my Humans cos I’m a dog and don’t know about such things) that the guy who wrote “The Count of Monte Cristo”, Alexandre Dumas also wrote a book set here? It was of course called Castle Eppstein. Grumpy-human says it was rubbish, but hey I’m just a dog what do I know eh?

Kaiser temple Eppstein  Anyway back to Eppstein. look up at the hill will you, that’s our destination, the Kaiser Temple and restaurant.

We went up this one track road on a very steep hill with rather large drops down the side of the mountain. I was not amused, in fact I was praying we wouldn’t meet a car coming the other way as there was no room to pass, someone would have to reverse…

Kaiser Temple Eppstein  But we made it to the top as Princess-human will attest.

Eppstein Taunus Area Kaiser Temple  At the top is a brilliant view over the town of Eppstein and surrounding Taunus region,

Ralph Border Collie Kaiser Temple   and a small monument, the Kaiser Temple, to Prussia / Germany wining the Franco-Prussian war of 1870 and

Kaiser Temple restaurant  a yummy little Italian restaurant with views to die for mark the top.

Many walk tracks through the forest cut past here too, come on guys we should do these…

Border Collie Stick Eppstein Germany  Now this is a stick mate, this is what I’m talking about. Ok balls are great and all but a pretty big stick, this is primeval stuff.

It’s mine, you Humans can all bugger off, I’m not even interested in ball throwing today. It was a great day out. I’m actually looking forward to more in our new Car now.

R

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