A bit of a dull week

Sunday 16th July to Saturday 22nd July

I’m mainly talking about the weather here. After very hot days on Monday and Tuesday we’ve had a lot of cloudy days and some rain, so I haven’t taken the camera on walks quite so much. And then there was the Saturday night incident last week, when Teddy got in the garage, knocked over his food bin, got the top off and gorged himself. Consequently he was feeling very sorry for himself on Sunday. Chris took him for a gentle walk in the morning, but come the afternoon all he wanted to do was sleep it off, so I didn’t take him out. It meant I could sit and watch the British Grand Prix though.

On Monday we went over to Upton Heath as usual. Teddy had fun zooming round the old pits (something he loves to do it the kids aren’t cycling there). At a break in his zoomies I took this photo.


On Tuesday it was a bright sunny morning with a bit of breeze so I took Teddy out early to the River Stour at Eye Bridge. We did our walk before I bought him back to the big, shallow bay in the river where we play.

Teddy in the river

I had seen a few swans further along the river but they were heading away from us. So I was surprised when Teddy took off around the section of bank that juts out. I couldn’t really see what was going on but could just see his back end and the odd flash of white. He was a very good boy, though, and came back when I called him. A few moments later I could see what he’d gone to investigate.

That's rather a lot of swans

There were 9 of them! I’m guessing last year’s cygnets. No wonder Teddy thought better of it. After we’d played for a while we went back to Eye Bridge. Last week I couldn’t get him over the bridge. It is slatted and dogs aren’t too keen on it at first. This week I managed to get him onto the bridge with the aid of a lead and some treats. This was the view down to the weir.

A lovely morning at Eye Bridge

And here’s Teddy on the bridge.

Teddy ventures onto Eye Bridge

He was really pleased he went over the bridge though, as he met an 11 month old Labrador over there.  They had great fun chasing each other in and out of the water.

The only other photos I have are from Saturday, taken on my iPhone on Upton Heath. Here’s Teddy in the pond.

Teddy in the pond

And lastly a portrait of him.


And in one final piece of news: we are a two-car family again. My Dad has had to give up driving so I’m buying his car. Freedom at last!


Max and I go to Eye Bridge

Tuesday 6th September 2016

Once again Jez did not feel like joining us for our morning walk. Today I took Max out to the River Stour at Eye Bridge and without Jez in tow we were able to do our full circular walk.

It was a lovely, still morning along the river.

Along the River Stour - going

The teasel flowers have all gone over now and I loved the backdrop of the clouds reflected in the river behind the teasel seed heads.


As usual we stopped for Max to play in the big, shallow bay in the river.

Time to play

And then we walked on to the place where he likes to have a swim.

Time for a swim

When the swans came along and started taking an interest in him, though, I decided it was time for us to continue on.


Poor lad – with the low water level and his dodgy back legs he couldn’t get out by himself and I had to hang onto a branch. lean over, grab his collar and haul him out.

As we haven’t been along here for a while I haven’t had the chance to photograph some of my favourite oak trees. So here is the oak tree in the middle of the field.

Oak Tree

And, of course, along the currently dry stream bed is what I call the ‘Oak of Many Faces’.

The 'Oak of Many Faces'

I love this really old oak and have so many photos of it. I just can’t resist.

The 'Oak of Many Faces'

And here’s a photo from a bit further on of Max in the dry stream bed.

Along the stream bed

We walked on round back to the big bay so that Max could have another play in the river. We were just leaving when some people came along with their dogs including this really cute, 13 week old, Border Terrier puppy.

Pig wants a treat

She’s called Pig because she was born on a pig farm. The lady who owns here also had a year old Springer Spaniel who was very tolerant of Pig.

Time for kisses

And Pig absolutely adored her.

I love you

We walked back to Eye Bridge and today I actually took a photo of the bridge as it was reflected nicely in the water.

Eye Bridge refelection

Here’s Max on the bridge, cone in mouth.

Max (with cone) on Eye Bridge

And here’s the view from the bridge looking upstream …

Upstream from Eye Bridge

… and downstream towards Wimborne.

Downstream from Eye Bridge

We’d had a really lovely walk.

A year ago today

We went for a walk at Broadley Inclosure in the New Forest with my Dad.

A Sunday afternoon walk in the New Forest

A two walk day

Thursday 10th September 2015

Chris was poorly today, so I did two walks with the dogs. In the morning we went to Upton Country Park, but I don’t have any photos from there. In the afternoon we went to the River Stour at Cowgrove.

We walked along the path by the river, and, as we approached the little bay where we play, I was surprised by the number of swans in the river. I think I counted 11 of them.

There were lots of swans near the playing place when we got there

I was a bit worried about letting the dogs in the water with all of those swans there. Max wasn’t in the least bit interested in them, though, and all he wanted to do was chase after his cone.

Max retrieves his cone

And Jez was a very good girl. Although she waded right out into the river she completely ignored the swans. Here she is coming back, with the swans in the background.

Fortunately Jez ignored the swans

We continued on round the loop that forms our walk. En route I took another photo of one of the faces on the old oak tree along the stream bed, as it’s been a while since I’ve taken a photo of it.

One of the old oak's faces

When we got back to the playing place by the river Jez had to go in and have a lie down under the reeds.

Jez lies down under the reeds to cool down

And then we headed back to the car. We’d had a nice walk, but I’m glad I don’t have to take them out twice every day.

A year ago today

We went for a walk on Canford Heath where I was busy taking photos of fungi, like this Boletus.

Boletus, Canford Heath

First day of summer

Monday 1st June 2015

There’s not much to report from today’s walk. Max and I went over to Upton Heath. We met our friend Bobby the staffy but other than that it was a fairly normal walk. I do have one photo taken as we came home. It seems the swans have abandoned their nest on Creekmoor Ponds.

The swans seem to have abandoned their nest

It won’t be the first time they’ve abandoned it. I think they did it last year then used another nest and raised a second clutch of eggs. We’ll have to wait and see what happens this year.

A year ago today

Chris and the dogs came to Sunday lunch at Dad’s and after lunch we took the dogs down to the beach at Steamer Point while Dad had a snooze.

Chris with Jez & Max

Off to the river

Sunday 31st May 2015

For a change today I decided to take Jez and Max to the River Stour at Cowgrove. Although Max and I go there in the mornings sometimes Jez rarely goes there. Jez started off by crossing the bridge and having a bit of a cool down in the river on the far side, which is odd really as for ages she refused to cross the bridge as she doesn’t like the open steps. Once on the far side she wanted to go across the fields there, but it’s not much of a walk and I wanted to walk along the river so the dogs could play. That meant I had to persuade her back over and then along the path rather than straight back to the car. We managed it eventually though.

At the first playing place there were two swans in the water, but far enough away for us not to have to bother about them.

River Stour

When we got to the second playing place there were two more swans with their brood of last year’s cygnets. Jez waded out to investigate. Fortunately both she and the swans decided it was wise to keep a healthy distance. I apologise for the smear in this photo – courtesy of Max’s tail – but otherwise it’s a good shot of Jez and the swans.

Jez goes to inspect the swans

We continued on round, and close to my favourite oak tree the flag irises were in bloom.


After that it was back on round to the first playing spot, and then back to Eye Bridge and the car. This is a shot of the weir taken from the river bank by Eye Bridge.

Weir at Eye Bridge

Jez, of course, didn’t want to get back in the car, so we spent a while in the field that serves as a car park in the summer before eventually coming home.

A year ago today

I dropped my Dad off at my aunt’s and Jez and I went for a walk on Burton Common, near Christchurch. Here’s Jez having a cool down in a puddle.

That's better

It’s Shanks’ pony for us

Thursday 5th February 2015

For those of you who don’t know, Shanks’ pony means walking. Apparently the North American version is Shanks’ Mare. Anyway, walking is what we are reduced to at the moment. Overnight I hunted around the internet and though the problem with the car might be that the chip in my key was damaged and so the immobiliser is cutting in. So for Max’s walk this morning we walked around to the garage to try Chris’ key in the car. It didn’t work. The garage is going to borrow another diagnostic computer to try on the car.

Walking to the garage means that Max gets to go to Hatch Pond, so he was a happy dog. He wasn’t so happy when a family of swans decided to come over and hassle him though.

Max gets hassled by the swans at Hatch Pond

This was the main culprit: last year’s cygnet.

Last year's cygnet

I got him out of the water and we moved on round the pond, but the swans were relentless in their pursuit of Max.

They're behind you!

Sadly we therefore had to give the idea of Max playing in the pond up as a bad job.

As we walked on home we were followed by this noisy little chap.

All sorts duck

He wasn’t happy with our presence either. As for what sort of a duck he is, I think the answer is an all-sorts.

And lastly, there was a small flock of tufted ducks on the pond – always one of my favourites.

Tufted ducks

I think they are so attractive.

So that was our walk for today. As for the car, the garage couldn’t find the fault so I’m going to have to have it towed to the Vauxhall dealership in Wimborne.

A year ago today

Max and I went to Upton Heath where the wind and rain was all a bit much for him.

Wind alert!

Time to service the car

Wednesday 28th August 2013

It’s that time of year when the car has to go in for it’s annual service. Fortunately the garage is fairly close (about 25 minutes walk away), so rather than take Max for a walk I put him in the back of the car, drove round to the garage and walked him home. I should point out that it was far too early for me to even try and get Jez out of bed, being before 9am in the morning (or should that read ‘before mid-day’?). It might seem a bit of a boring walk for him, but it’s a route that he doesn’t normally walk, even if it is around the streets, so there are lots of new places for him to sniff at and explore. And the garage is close to Hatch Pond, so Max was well pleased.

Hatch Pond

His nose went up in the air when we were a few hundred yards away, and he pulled me in that general direction. When we got near the pond and off the road I let him off the lead and he raced around and promptly headed for the water. It was a bit scummy around the edges but I didn’t have the heart to keep him out, and in the end he went in and had a swim in two different places.

Max has a swim in Hatch Pond

Here’s another view of the pond looking towards Canford Heath.

Hatch Pond

Once I got him out of the water and back on the lead the next bit of our walk proved a bit more tricky, as there was a bit of an obstruction on the path…

There was a slight obstruction on the pavement

We gave them a wide berth, but they still had a good old hiss at us.

Once I got home I had a short rest then had to go to Broadstone, so I walked both dogs up there and back. I say walked – Jez decided she was feeling good after her physio session last night and trotted virtually the whole way, so I was walking at quite a pace. Once there she dragged Max and I to the pet shop and then did not want to come home again. I’m not sure exactly where she wanted to go, but it wasn’t back the way we came. She was constantly stopping any lying down. So I turned off the Trailway and bought them home a different way – not that that prevented Jez from taking multiple rests. I think she was just too hot and there was no water for her to cool down in. It took us ages to get home.

After lunch I walked Max back round to the garage to pick up the car and he had another swim in Hatch Pond. All in all it was a pretty good day for him.