This time out I’m going to the cool little seaside town of Dunsborough, Western Australia. Last year I had so much fun with me Humans here that I think everyone should know about this little dog friendly jewel located about 250 km (150 miles) south of Perth in the south western part of Australia.
Its dog and people friendly and…
…it has the best pies you will ever taste (if ya can get em off Grumpy-Human that is…).
Now of course the main reason to come to Dunsborough is for the beach, swimming and ball chasing.
And how about our digs in Dunsborough eh? Dog friendly too, local rental property right next to the beach and really good value.
Some things to see and do in and around Dunsborough:
So apart from the fab beaches there is this really great tasting food pub Clancy’s Fish Pub and I’m aloud outside in the garden seating.
Now I think I will have the chilli mussels, Ta.
Whales are pretty awesome creatures and I’m told often sighted of the coast here. Now I had a bit of a squizz but could not see one.
This winery is pretty cool too, not that I like wine much but me Humans seem quite partial to it. I do like the gardens and food however! And for more wine tasting there is always the famous Margret River region a few kms south of Dunsborough.
Woz out doing a bit of ball catchin at me new dog beach the other day and these rowdy lunatics turned up.
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…
Any by the way as I was such a good prezzy opener last Christmas I have now formally been promoted to Chief Prezzy Opener!
Here’s me in action on Curly Humans recent birthday.
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.
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.
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!
Yep I’ve been blogging on WordPress since March 2015 that’s 14 dog-years mate! And besides that I will be 5 in human-years next month, that’s… er… 35 dog-years, just sayin. I’m feelin decidedly middle aged! Should I go out and get me Humans to purchase a flash ball?, I’m thinking something really big and flashy like …
I know… one those balls you can actually get inside and run on water! Yeah!
Is it true, this myth that 1 human year equals 7 dog years? This seems a little unfair to us dogs. Anyway various dog breeds have different average life spans. Me I plan to live forever anyway, I have a big world to see yet…
These are the 16 countries I’ve visited in me lifetime so far: Germany, England, Wales, Ireland, Czech Republic, Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Bosnia Herzegovina, Italy, UAE, Switzerland, France, Belgium, Holland and Australia. Yeah, I know, the UAE is pushin it a bit but I did overnight in Dubai on me way to Australia! Who knew eh? I’m a BC rescue and this is my life! To tell the truth though now that we have moved from Europe to me Humans home in Australia we haven’t travelled so much, it’s pretty isolated out here and I’m getting itchy feet…
Anyway back to my blog-a-versary, here are some of me fav blogs over the last 2 (Human) years and a special thank you to all of you who followed me adventures in those early days. Here are a few that were deemed popular or were me own personal favs. Enjoy!
No I’m not going to be talking about Australian Aboriginal art although this Aboriginal flag at Bathers Beach surely is art too. No in a broader sense I’m going to show you guys local Western Australian sculptures from local artists which of course can include Aboriginal artists.
These sculptors are exhibiting in Fremantle, Perth’s port city at a beach known as Bathers Beach more on this unique place can be found here. WA artists come together once every couple of years for some fantastic works with the brilliant blue backdrop of the Indian Ocean. More about this exhibition can be found at the Sculptures at Bathers web site if you are visiting Perth over the next week or so.
This monster nearly made me wee me self (and I’ve been told by me Humans in no uncertain terms… no weeing on the sculptures or we will all be kicked out… who me?). Anyway this is a sculpture by WA Artist Susan Flavell. It’s called the Shimmer and was inspired by the Greek mythical beast the chimera. Pretty cool once I knew it couldn’t harm me!
Where the grass is greener – Bellinda Panizza. Bit of a weird elephant, the tusks are on the wrong side! Sculptured in grass to symbolize elephants breaking free from our interference. Well not me… er… you Humans I’m guessing.
Generator – Tom de Munk-Kerkmeer. It says “A wind driven visual poem, empowering contemporary society to move onwards.” Wot? Not one of me favs, a bit beyond us dogs this one so I’m contemplating a dip on the ocean me thinks…
Dispersal Machine – Tania Spencer. It’s something about the dispersal of thoughts and ideas. Me I thought I’d photo-bomb it when me Humans were trying to get a decent picture… heh heh…
Divide – Ant Muia. This is what the blurb in me Humans guide said: “Divide is a project that examines the human condition bound by limits and possibilities. It acts as a device that may unite or separate the viewer from art”. Well I can tell you this Border Collie is on the separate-art side, come on Mate it’s a pile of bloody rubble! Some guys got lost delivering gardening supplies and dumped the lot at the beach. [Editor’s note, purely Ralph’s opinion you must understand]
Starfish – Jason Maxlow. Liked this one, looks like a stumbling human running in the sand!
The Fremantle Doctor – Russell Sheridan. This has to be me absolute favourite!
Now I should probably explain what the Fremantle Doctor is. You see Perth is quite a hot place in the summer time with temperatures regularly exceeding 40C (104F) but if you live near Fremantle which is the ocean port for Perth then regular as clockwork at around 3-4 pm the sea breeze comes in off the Indian Ocean to cool everything down, just what the doctor ordered, the Fremantle Doctor as this health giving breeze is known!
The sculpture has a dog and his Human pointing the way to the Fremantle Doctor!
So guys there’s one Border Collies art class for ya. Until next time, I’m off for me swim…
As many of you who have followed me blog for a while will know I am rather fond of our planets oceans and rivers, I love to swim! And… just sayin… I ‘m rather partial to the odd morsel of sea food too. My absolute fav is tuna but coming a close second would be salmon then ya shelf fishes such as oysters and mussels.
So it was with great enthusiasm that I hopped in the car for the short trip north of Dubrovnik to the Croatian coastal town of Mali Ston, home of the best oysters in the world (so the locals say). It means Little Ston in Croatian and sure enough it has a big brother town up the road just called Ston. You Humans are so creative in your naming heh heh.
Now Mali Ston did to me seem to need a little tender loving care as you can see by this pile of rubble…
Having said that, Mali Ston and afore mentioned Ston are connected by a magnificent wall running for many kilometres and known locally as Ta Da… “The Great Wall of Croatia”! Bet ya didn’t know Croatia had its very own Great Wall did ya? Pretty impressive eh? I’d really like to see the Chinese one mind you, I’ve only seen pictures from me Humans travels there before I was born.
Built in the fourteenth century as a defensive wall for some old salt farms apparently, lot of effort for some salt, go figure… I guess the stuff was worth more back then. More info from good old Wikipedia here.
Now back to the main subject of Mali Ston, oysters. And I can see the oysters being farmed just out there. Definitely swimable.
Well, we’re back on dry land after aborting the trip to the oyster beds. My Humans stopped me, something about a crazy lunatic Croat yelling at us about disturbing the oyster beds.
Ok so swimming for ya oysters wasn’t really a goa then so plan B, persuade me Humans to have lunch in that Taverna Restaurant we passed on the way here.
Forget the poses and photo ops, its oysters we are after mate, beautiful as this Mali Ston harbour is!
More action little less talk me Humans, oysters I say!
Well at least they bought me two Oysters but you should have seen the ones me Humans scoffed! They were pretty bloody marvellous though I will say.
Now one last thing. Many people have said: are Mali Ston oysters really as good as they say? Some even say the best in the world. In my humble but well-travelled Border Collie opinion: You bet ya white BC socks they are! And if you don’t believe me read this BBC travel link on that very topic.
Now I think you have all heard enough of this European Summer holiday so I won’t go into the details of the long trip home to Frankfurt, Germany. I will say that we drove back through Italy! Finally I got to see a little of Italy. We even visited Venice. If there is enough interest I may blog about me trip on a Gondola in Venice one day…
For now this is Ralph signing off. Time for rounding up a few humans for some ball catching at the park me thinks.
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.
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.
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.
It needs it as the country is extremely poor by European standards.
Evidence of the Balkan wars and the breakup of Yugoslavia are everywhere.
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.
Mostarcity 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.
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!
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.
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…
Its interesting to see which countries pitched in to pay for the rebuilding of the Mostar Bridge…
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.
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!
Now that the sunny weather has returned. Here is my account of one Border Collies attempt to swim to Italy… Or at least have fun trying!
So this is a picture of Lapad Bay, Dubrovnik. Out in the distance beyond those rocks is Italy and the sea is the Northern Mediterranean also known as the Adriatic Sea. Here is a Google Map to put it in perspective for you.
Anyway first off for a dip in the Adriatic with me Humans
Now this is what I’m talking about! Crystal clear waters, just me and me Humans, life is good.
Now might be time for me break for Italy, can’t be far from here…
Yep, Princess Human is distracted, I’ll make me break for it!
Now I’m banished to the boat while Princess and Curly have all the fun…
Actually this is not so bad, hey I’m captain of the boat!
Now after all that nautical stuff and having failed on me attempt to swim to Italy its time for refreshments eh?
And a lovely sunset over Lapad Bay to finish things off.
In my next instalment we go exploring Dubrovnik Old Town
The previous instalment in our grand adventure can be found here.
On account of a rather large storm hitting Dubrovnik our first adventure was one more up my alley than my poor Humans.
Catching rain drops, now I can’t emphasize enough just how much fun this is, and best of all ya get to photo-bomb ya Humans trying to take nice scenic photos of Dubrovnik… Anyway me Humans were just lazing around in the villa’s nice spa, boring…
I tried to hop in to the spa a few times but my Human were to vigilant to that. I don’t know what their problem was, they know I love swimming…
And now that the sun has finally come out, stealing me rain drop fun.
Me Humans have kindly blown a few bubbles for me, even better than rain drop catching I reckon.
In my next instalment we at last get out and explore Lapad Bay and I get to swim in the Adriatic!