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How much trouble can two dogs get into...?

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MONDAY 15th Feb: Stormy

Tara: Amazing walk today!  Wet and wild and bouncy.  We went twice round the big lake and I saw sleet and stuff.  It was very exciting.  The photos won't show nearly how exciting it was.  And we got SOAKED to the skin and it was FUN.  And there was mud and EVERYTHING.   Cato: It started out lovely and sunny, although there was a really cold wind.  And neither of us had fancied much breakfast. But half way round, the cloud came in, and Mum and Dad were scuttling as fast as their huge human feet could blunder, and we got rain and hail, and Dad didn't have his Xmas hat, or gloves, and Mum put her hood up (that only happens when she thinks the sky is going to fall on her), and Tara was too bouncy to even notice, so she was bouncing on me in the rain, and I got wetter and wetter.  But have you ever noticed how the sniffs change when it rains.  Fascinating. So this is one side of the sky (just after the big cloud had gone over): And this is the other side of the sky at the same time  (the cloud that had just widdled rain and pooped hail on us). So the sun came out again, and Tara didn't notice, and we paddled in some fresh mud: And looked at ducks: Wish Donte and Lacey had been with us.  We would have had duck for tea, wouldn't we? And Mum had a sit down, and Tara was a pest.  Mum's leg was hurting.  She says she isn't very aerogynamic like dogs are, but she was fine after the cramp had gone. Tara got up on that rock all by herself.  Twice.  and put muddy footprints on Mum's back! And then they decided that the sky looked great, and we were all wet and not-tired, and we might as well go round again. But more clouds came in, so fast that we couldn't do anything.  And there was no shelter, and I got too cold. Can you see the hail poops?  It was bouncing off the ground and hitting us from every direction, and the path was like walking in a puddle.  And notice the blue sky and sunlight in the distance.  Weird, eh? And this is us at the car, after it had stopped.  The mud on my back is because Tara kept rolling me in the mud.   Mum: So, when we got home after that little lunchtime adventure, I had to get straight back to the computer, so Dad (who is on 3 days off) gave them a good wipe over with a towel, and set them near a radiator to dry.  They are being groomed in 3 days, so a bath was not an option. They took a very long time to dry off - 8+ hours!  which just goes to show how wet they had got.  And I should have blow dried them, really.  But they were warm throughout, and slept.  Cato was rather subdued all evening, so I think he found it a bit stressful to be bombarded with hail, while being attacked on all sides by her, but they are both fine now.  All the mud has now been brushed out and hoovered up. lol.   Sidney: A duvet day.  The window was open for an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening, but I only went out once.  Then I waited until everyone was in bed, and scraped half my litter out of the tray and onto the bathroom floor. Well, they didn't give me any bones today, so I had to make do.

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SUNDAY 14th Feb: Auntie Jane Day!

Sidney:    2nd day of window open all day.  And now my foot hurts.  Pork for dinner.  And Mum says I have to stay in today to 'rest' it.  I live in a Nanny State.  But I left a pork chop bone on the top stair this morning.  I was watching through the bannisters.   She nearly trod on it in her bare feet.    Another Machiavellian plan foiled by human luck.  Humph.   Tara:     Proper walk today!  With lovely Auntee Jane. This is us waiting in the car for her to appear! I am tall enough to be able to watch her front door, but short-arses have to sit squinting at the sun.  Hahahaha! It was ace fun when Arntie Jane appeared.  I scrambled through the netting, cos I am fit and bouncy and strong. (Note by Mum: NEVER let Dad put the netting back up, unless he is closely supervised!) So I was jigging about in the back of the car, and managed to lick Arnty's ear!  Then Mum got cross, and went round to the back of the car, and opened the boot (Mum: that is 'trunk' to some of you) and I was so excited that I hopped out onto Auntee's drive, and Mum got cross all over again!  And I ran about sniffing and trying to go in the house to see Uncle N, until Mum gave Goody Four Paws Cato a treat, sitting in the boot of the car, and I rushed over to get one too - and Mum grabbed me. I knew I am NEVER NEVER NEVER allowed to jump out of the boot of the car.  But I kinda forgot.   Mum: Note to self - re-fix the netting, PROPERLY today.  And don't ever open the dratted boot until both dogs are sitting calmly.  OR put the crates back in.  Very cross.  Thank heavens it happened on Jane's private drive, not a road.    Cato: When we finally got to the park, it was GORGEOUS.  Sunny and very cold, and everything was sniffy and beautiful.  We met lots of dogs today, all of them nice, and about half of them were little.  We met Bruno the cocker spaniel.  He has been on a diet and looks MUCH better.  And Benji the Lhasa Apso, who doesn't get enough play, or walks, and is slightly crazy.  He is sort of permanently hysterically desperate to play with us, which frightens Tara.   And we met Belle, the 12 week old King Charles.  She is soooo sweet.  She has a pink harness and was incredibly waggy and playful.  Hope we see her again.  And then there were about 5 shih tzsus, most of them gold and white, and Jack who is much nicer now he has grown up a bit.  Unfortunately most of them were on leads, so we couldn't play properly. Sniff!: Sprouting Buddlea - it will be 8 feet tall by the end of the summer: Tara submitting to a friendly shih tzu called Bonzai, or Sumo, or something : Nearly flowering daffodils: Beautiful light and an interesting post sniff: Tara and Aunty Jane on a bench looking down on me.  Mum said I could sit on her, if I liked, but I prefer to stay on the ground and greet people and dogs as they walk past: Tree bark and tree bark.  Yawn:      

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SATURDAY 13th Feb: Street Slog and a bit of beach

Sidney: Window open ALL day, from before breakfast til human bedtime.  My kingdom awaits. Later, humans.   Cato: I think our blog is being ruined by human building stuff.  Apparently we had to walk on the streets so much because of Tara and the forked lead, and for photos of houses on the slippy leaf road.  Not that there are slippy leaves any more.  They have all mushed away all winter.  So, lots of photos. Mum has tried to make up for it with a video of Tara beating me up.  Twice.  It was very cold. We got lots of treats though.  We have to sit on the kerb before we cross the road.  So we get to the kerb.  Mum puts her hand in her pocket and gets two treats out.  I sit.  I sit up in Meerkat position and stare adoringly at Mum's treat hand.  Tara stares around, has a scratch.  Watches the traffic.  Tara notices we have stopped.  Tara sees me Meetkatting.  Tara slaps her bum down on the ground and starts whining at Mum's treat hand.  Mum gives us a treat each.  I take it delicately, with manners.  Tara tries to fit the whole of Mum's hand and wrist into her mouth.  Mum wipes Tara's slobber off onto her coat.  We cross the road. This is an ancient post box.  See the generations of widdle around the base? These are all from the slippy leaf road.  Sniff: It is one of the posh bits of town. Mum can chunter about architectural features, but I will spare you that.  Basically, you are supposed to be noticing bay window decoration, tiled entries and front doors.  Sigh. Mum says this house is empty, overgrown and needs lots of love.  She says she would love it for the roof of the bay window alone!  And restoring the tiles in the entrance way would be a labour of love. This is posh offices: Sniff: This is a big house broken into flats:   Tara Then we got to beach.  I had been really good on the lead.  Mum had to grab my collar so I didn't knock Cato over as he was pooing.  It would have been fun pulling him over, but I had to be good, didn't I?  Then we had a little time on the beach before I found Dad at a cafe table.  Aren't I brilliant finding him like that? Turns out our whole walk was looking for him, and then I, Me, not Cato, found him.  Dad was sooo pleased to see us, and said how clever i was.  And he gave us treats and fussed us. This is us on the beach. Me beating up Cato: Me beating him up again.  For longer: And this is Cato heading for the steps to escape me beating him up again!  Hahaha! Mum: Sorry about the video quality.  It was taken on my phone.  Looks best if you shrink the box as small as possible!  

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FRIDAY 12th Feb: Cherry blossom

Cato: Very exciting day!  We went to the Small Park (with the green fox's bum) and Mum did her usual boring picture stuff.  And Tara did her usual silly bench climbing.  And we met Auntie Carol!  She is the Auntie who runs the puppy classes that both Tara and I went to when we were really really little.  And I got really excited to see her, and ran around play-bowing and wagging my butt off.  She picked me up and snuggled me, and remembered me too!  No picture of her though, because of something called privacy.  But I can remember her scent, so that is enough. Here is the park.  Mum kept looking at tree bark.  She says they are beautiful.  No idea why: This is the path round the big square green bit that the boys play football in. Mum says soon the trees will be covered in cherry blossom.  This is the first of it.  Hope we don't have a cold snap, to knock it back.   Tara: Yes.  Yes.  But what about mee!  Did you see me attacking Cato on the path?  And this is me on a picnic table! And this is the best joke of all!  Hahahaha! Mum does put us on leads if there are people playing ball in the green bit.  And she puts us on leads if there are lots of little humans, or interesting stuff like that.  But the rest of the time we have the run of the park.  Anyway, the park belongs to us dogs for most of the year.  Non-doggie humans only appear in the Summer, when it is too hot to run about, so I don't mind then.   Sidney: Chicken thigh.  I have taken the whole thing upstairs.  Haven't decided where to leave the tough bone bit. Mum hissed at me last night!  Teeth bared!  I got off the bed in a huff.  How unreasonable.  Totally unprovoked.  I only play pounced on her arm when it moved the covers.  And my claws weren't really snagged in her sleeve.  And my eyes weren't really like saucers, in full hunting mode.  It was just her imagination.  Really. Of course, if she wants me to sleep all the time and be a slug-like lap cat, she should open the window more, shouldn't she?  Then I would be too tired to launch surprise attacks at 3am.    

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THURSDAY 11th Feb: Restless

Mum: Thought I would go first today.  So there, Tara!  Just trying to get my story in first, before they publicise their 'take' on the day.  I have noticed how they just seem to ignore facts in favour of dramatic flair, sometimes. OK, so firstly, it was all a genuine mistake.  I planned a nice walk, and then Auntie Jane called and we arranged to pop over in the evening, to see her and Uncle N.  All good so far.  Only then I thought 'well, if I wear them out with a walk, they won't be much fun for N, will they?  Their over-excited wrangling and tussling are what make the visits.  That and the catfood thieving.  So we cancelled the walk. They were a bit resless all afternoon, but that was OK.  The high jinks would come later... only they didn't. The visit was cancelled at the last minute, due to N not feeling very well, and suddenly it was too dark and miserable for a walk, and I had 2 muttlets who were bursting out of their skin... The 3 Amigos (in a rare moment of peace and togetherness):   Sidney: We are back on the correct window opening schedule, I am pleased to say.  And it was turkey for tea.  With tinned for breakfast.  I like tinned, but they only give it to me when they have messed up on raw food supplies, so I wonder what went wrong?  Not that I really care.  The jelly is lovely.  I lick it all off the pappy lumps of pretend meat, and then scatter a few lumps around, just to watch Mum pick them up.   Cato: Tara keeps pulling my tail.  There I am, asleep and content, on Mm's lap.  And you can't keep your tail up when asleep, can you?  It is impossible.  And then SHE attacks.  Sometimes, if Mum isn't quick enough to react, she pulls me off onto the floor.  And she hurt my lip too.  I squeaked really loudly, and then barked and barked and barked at her, until she sniffed the ground to apologise.  I was so angry.  She never knows when to stop. Mum says we will get a really good walk tomorrow, and she is sorry there was no walk today.  I don't mind.  Well, I would mind less if Tara wasn't around, but I don't mind very much. No photos of a walk, cos we didn't have one.  So here are some photos of our home.   Some are old, but that is OK.  Not much has changed. These are our downstairs crates.  We only go into them to drink, and to sleep when Mum and Dad go out and leave us. This is our doggie door.  It used to be a catflap, but Sidney refuses to use it any more.  So now it is our dogflapdoor. And this is our upstairs all-night bedroom:     Tara: Boring day.  But Mum got down on the floor and we wrestled for ages, until my tooths accidently touched her in a hurty place, and we stopped playing, for ages!  I tried to play with Cato, but he ended up just lying on the floor with a toy in his mouth, which got boring too.  So I went outside and barked.  And chased Sidney back upstairs.  And then Mum sat on the floor again and we played tug of war, and not-fetch, and wrestling.  Oh and we had a bridge-of-nose face trim too.  I was good, cos I love staring into Mum's eyes, but Cato doesn't so he got more treats than me, which isn't fair.  I NEED more treats on account of being bigger.  But bigger treats would work too.  More and bigger treats would be best, of course.

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WEDNESDAY 10th Feb: Road trek and 1st sand castle of the year

Tara: Me first again today!  Hahaha!  Cato is still asleep, cos he was naughty yesterday.  He didn't widdle at bedtime.  Mum was dancing about the garden crunching gravel and saying 'Hurry up! Hurry up! Hurry up!' but he didn't wee.   Then when Dad got up for work at 3.30 am, Cato heard him and woke Mum. and had to be carried downstairs to wee, and back up again. Why does she always say Hurry up 3 times?  Weird eh? Anyway, now he is being a lazy slug and wanting a lie in, and he didn't even notice that Sidney had dropped some chicken liver in the hallway during the night.  Yum!   Sidney: It is cold.  There is a frost.  I don't want to go out in it.  In fact, I want my breakfast.  But I do want to have my window open so that I can choose not to go out.  Mum says we will wait until the frost melts so I don't slip.  But I won't slip.  cos I won't go out.  I just want the window open.  But I am taking my revenge, because she is getting worried.  I haven't used my litter tray in 2 days. She is wondering where I have been going.  It is fun watching her wonder.    Cato: More forked lead   I do wish Tara wouldn't tug me about all the time.  She doesn't understand that a man has to tinkle.  Mum seems to be launching another 'Behave on the lead, or I will force you to walk on pavements ALL the time' Campaign. She made us walk all the way to the beach instead of taking the car, along these roads.  The good thing was that the bins were all out.  They are good and sniffy, and widdleable.  Although she won't let me widdle on the blue and orange bins, cos they are for recycling.  Wotever that is. And those roads spit us out at the top of the hill overlooking the beach.  Mum says you haven't seen this yet, so we had to stop for a 'photo opportunity', despite the beach being within sniffing distance! Standard beach fight scene: First sandcastles of the year.  I thought Tara was going to stand on one, but Mum stopped her. And today, for the first time, we had a proper look at the underside of the pier.  We often walk under the ramp, but the pier is MUCH BIGGER.  Tara was trying to drink the sea puddles.  Again.  She is very stupid.  But then we had a drink of water and some treats, to wash out her mouth.  And mine. And this is the walk back through the market place.  I was getting tired by then, and Tara wasn't.  And she did the Thing.  The Thing where the closer we get to home, the bouncier she gets.  She attacked me while crossing a road!  And then wouldn't stop, even when Mum pulled her off me, dragged us up onto the pavement, and made her SIT. She did sit.  But then as soon as Mum took a step, she pounced on me again.  It pulls my neck! So, guess wot Mum did!  She grabbed Tara The Pest.  She unhooked the lead.  She picked her up, slinging her over her shoulder like a fireman's lift.  And she carried her the 50 yards home!!! Tara didn't know what was happening, and squiggled and squirmed and wanted to get down.  But Mum was firm and didn't put her down til we were inside the gate!  it was fun to watch, and it sure taught her! but it will have to happen 50 times, or she won't remember it. The only problem is, I think we are going to get more of that forked lead until Tara learns to behave. We had seared chicken livers for tea, and then farted all evening.   Mum: And finally, for your amusement, the latest shot of the shed roof.  Frosty this morning, which highlights the peeling tape beautifully! Note the drunken solar lighting, from being bashed by the step ladder every time it is used.          

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TUESDAY 9th Feb: Fight! and Cemetery

Tara: Twice round the dog field today!  And through the cemetery.  And down the slippy leaf road! And we had that horrible forked lead thing on, which EVERYBODY hates, but Mum says is good to teach me manners.  Don't know what manners are, but I HATE them.  Lots of pics of me having fun, and Cato getting squished.  So it is all good. And Mum says that since I chewed the last wooden brush handle, I am not allowed another.  Not fair!  I only chewed it cos I LOVE it so much, and it was just lying there, not brushing me.  If it had done what it was supposed to, I wouldn't have chewed it, would I?  So it isn't fair that Mum is saying I can't get brushed when it is the brush's fault.  Aren't I right, Aunties?  Tell Mum to get another wooden handled brush!   Cato: Is she STILL going on about that brush?  So silly.  And she is silly on the lead too.  Anyway, you will see the pictures, and know what I mean! This is the building next to our Big Dog Field.  Mum thoght it was a good idea to take a pic now, so we can see how much it grows. This is the whole field: Hurry up Mum! Butter wouldn't melt, eh?  Don't be fooled! Fight! Fight!! Fight!!! Fight!!!! Fight!!!!! Fight!!!!!! Fight!!!!!! Wot fight? This is the cememtery.  Mum says that the low lying mist is not ghostly fog or anything, it is woodsmoke from a bonfire on one of the allotments over the hedge.  Have to stay on the lead in the cemetery.  It says so on a sign.  But that is a good thing, cos Tara just wants to climb everything, including headstones. We haven't seen a ghost yet, although Tara keeps looking.  When she isn't ruining perfectly good hairbrushes. And this is Tara being a pain on the lead.  She is such a heffalump!  She pulls me off balance when I am trying to wee, and she picks fights, and she never wants to sniff the good stuff. Well, except this time.  This was a GOOD sniff. Hurry up Mum! Sidney: Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz      

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MONDAY 8th Feb: Brief scamper

Cato:  Mum said it was going to be horrible wet and we wouldn't get a walk today.  But then, when lunchtime came, it was OK.  So we all got in the car and drove to the Park with the Lake!  And just as we pulled into the car park, it started to rain.  So there was a big discussion.  We ALL decided that since we were here, it wasn't fair to go home without scooting once round the lake. So we did. But it was soooooo wet.   And windy.  That we found it difficult to walk back, with the wind in our faces.  We had to lean into it, and Mum had to hold her hat on. And there aren't any photos, cos it was too wet for Mum to take her phone out of her pocket! She says you have to imagine the lake (like last week) without the sun, and with sheets of rain driving horizontally across the grasses and the water.  And two dogs (that's me and Tara) looking like drowned rats.   Tara: We didn't even stop at a single bench to play Truffle Hound!  And we got very wet.  Mum said the car smells of wet dog.  I think it smells of wet human, too.  So the not-long-enough walk meant we were a bit bouncy for the rest of the day, and at one point Mum had to freeze her TV program, cos she couldn't hear it.  But we didn't mind.   Sidney: They keep feeding me downstairs in my Dining Area.  Which means I have to walk past The Brat and get sniffed and licked.  But it also means I have remembered that I have a rather nice bed on Mum's desk.  Next to her keyboard.  Very convenient for ear rubs.  And I spent some time on there, yesterday.  Which was acceptable.  Especially since it was convenient to remind her about supper.  They gave me lamb, but I objected, and we went back to chicken. This is what the shed roof looked like yesterday morning, before the rain.  Notice the tape?  It increases nearly every day.

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SUNDAY 7th Feb: Auntie walk! :)

Sidney: I have forgiven them.  We had a nice snuggle on the big bed, and I purred like a... a... well, I purred a lot.  Like a TIGER.  Mainly on account of the ear and cheek rub that Mum does.  And I didn't bite anyone.  Sometimes, when I have had enough of being fussed, I bite hands and arms, to tell people to stop.  Didn't need to this time. And I kneaded the bedcovers, and my injured paw kneaded properly, for the first time since my War Wound happened.  And my broken off claws were snagging in the bedcover!  So I am really getting better!  We slept all night together, with me in the middle.   Tara: Anuntie Jane for breakfast!  Inside, under the table!  Sausage when we got back into the car!  Walk in the Little Park!  Fun. Fun. Fun. This is Arnty Jane: Caqn you see how much I LOVE her?  She says I am as cute as a button. Wot is a leg warmer?  They were talking about my 1980s legwarmer leg cut.  Do you think my back legs look like they are wearing leg warmers?  This is me sniffing an amazing circle of trees: And this is me on another bench:   Cato: We had a lovely walk.  Auntie Jane is PACK.  She was with Mum when Mum came to pick me up that first day.  And she stayed with me for hours, sitting on the floor, to help me settle in.  And she came on my first ever widdle trip into the garden.  I was so tiny then I couldn't get over the doorstep! She calls me a Gentleman, and she calls Tara a Hooligan. The park was awesome today.  Sunny and green and dry and soooooo sniffy. These are going to be daffodils:   Mum: They have had a tree surgeon in to prune some of the trees. The next two pictures are of 2 trees that were identical a few days ago.  Isn't that sad? This is Cato looking sad at the tree massacre:   It is due to be very wet on Monday.  We may not get a walk. Heaven help us!          

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SATURDAY 6th Feb: 1st Great Return Journey

Tara: We got up really early, and I was sleepy, but Mum and Dad carried us outside, cos they thought we might wee on one of the corners in the hotel, if we walked.  But there was a nice patch of grass outside.  Then we went back to bed for a bit while they did bathroom stuff.  When they went to breakfast, I whined.  I was still whining when they got back.  But I might have stopped in the middle.  We had raw beef mince for breakfast, and they didn't save us any sausages. This is Scarborough in the rain, when we stopped and sat under a table.  We had wet knickers and wet backs, and Mum said she wished she had brought some coats for us.  But she wiped us down with a blue cloth, and we were given a bowl of water by the lady to made the coffee, and lots of people stopped to say hello. This is in the station when we watched Dad buy the tickets.  I ate something off the floor. The first train back was nice.  We sat on Mum and Dad and the girl in the seat opposite kept fussing me.  Cato fell asleep with his head on Mum's shoulder and snored.  I could hear him. This is sitting under another cafe table at Hull station.  Yawn.  Cafe tables are boring, unless we can smell sausages.  This just smelled of coffee.  Again.  Cato is still sleepy. This is what we were looking at.  There are lots of dogs on trains and at stations.  We saw a very shiny black lab that bounced like a puppy.  Mum complimented the man and said what a good diet the dog must get.  He looked about a year old, but was 6!   Cato: Very tired today.  Mum let me sleep on both trains.  On the second one, she put her coat on the seat and I made a den in the lining and snoozed all the way.  It was lovely.  We thought the guard might get cross and insist I got down, but he didn't even see me.  It was nice. When we got home we just checked the house and garden, had a snack, and went to bed.  Mum woke us up to go upstairs, and then we slept all night. Trains are very tiring.   Sidney: I did not sleep on the big bed with them because I have not yet forgiven them.  Even the fresh chicken piece was not enough.  I am still deciding how to exact appropriate revenge.  I have started off by leaving some chicken bones on the carpet, in the dark, outside the bathroom.  Mum made cross noises at 3am.  What else can I do? At least the window is open again.  

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FRIDAY 5th Feb: 1st Great (doggie) Train Journey

Cato: Tara was BAD.  Very bad.  And then she was Naughty. We went in the car to the station, then 2 trains.  At the first station we had a mini walk because Dad was worried that Tara hadn't had a wee and would go on the train.  I had weeed earlier, so I was good.  But then I had a poo.  Just in case.  Cos I am good.  This was a lump, with car tyres, next to a football pitch near the station.  It was odd.  So we all had to climb it.  There was a man walking across the field and he asked wot kind of dogs we are.  So Dad said 'Shih Tzu' and the man thought he was swearing.  Then they had a laugh. Then we got on the train.  The first train was horrible.  The floor was dirty and Tara ate something but no one knows what it was, even Tara.  And I hated it.  Tara whined and hid under the seat, and I crouched down under Mum's legs.  We were close to the doors, and I could see out, and into the next carriage, and everything was shaking around, and it was horrible. Then we got off, at York Station.  It was busy, but cleaner, and we all had Burgerking.  This is when we were standing waiting for the burgers.  It was bustley, but better than the train.  And several people said 'hello', and 2 girls shrieked at how cute we were, and 3 children wanted to stroke us.  And Tara licked and licked a toddler, and the toddler's Mum laughed and said 'she tastes of icecream! The next train was better though.  It had a carpet, was less rattley and Tara and I could sit together and snuggle.  Mum and Dad carried us on and off the trains cos of the gap between the platform and the step.  It is scary, and I won't jump up because there are monsters under the train. We arrived in Scarborough and Mum and Dad thought we should go on the beach before the hotel, so we could 'work off the stress' in 'familiar environment'.  This is when Tara got very, very BAD. This is the beach: It is dark cos it WAS dark.  The light was going, and the clouds made it dark.  Tara ran a long way away, and climbed these steps.  I only went that far to see she was ok.  She climbs EVERYTHING. But she climbed and climbed, and wouldn't get down.  And Mum said 'leave her, she will come back down if we walk off' but I had climbed a bit too.  And I was a bit stuck.  But she wouldn't come down.  And she was cheeky.  She just kept going higher, and it could have been a road up there.  So Dad had to come fetch us. And this is where she got REALLY bad.  She wouldn't let him catch her.  I only went up to help.  But she was dancing around and in the end Dad had to bring us both down the long way. This was our hotel.  Big, isn't it?  It is very old.  Even older than Mum and Dad's Mums and Dads.  We went up the cliff to the hotel in the vertical train tram thing to the right of this picture.  It was weird, but Mum carried me, so it was OK. It is A Victorian Monstrosity, Mum says, with Vulgar PsudoVictorian Paintwork, but Dad loves the food, and the rooms are clean and warm.  And they allow us dogs in.  We all think it is a great hotel. Tara was Naughty-Bad in the hotel too.   Tara: I was NOT naughty in the hotel.  I was doing my duty.  Just because Cato was tired and a slug, and I had to step up to guard duty, and barked when people went past, he says I was naughty.  But I wasn't.  I was protecting our Hotel Den and warning Mum and Dad that people might be trying to get in.  Besides there was another dog down the corridor, and he was barking too!  So really, I was beeing GOOD, wasn't I. Aunties?  It would have been irris- irres- pons- it would have been a bad thing if I hadn't protected us.  All evening.  And half the night.  Sitting by the door and sniffing under it.  Until Mum got up and tied me to the leg of her bed and built me a pen with the rucksacks and the chair.  And then we all went to sleep. Anyway.  It isn't as if I have a LOUD bark, is it? This is me and Dad and Cato on one of the teensy beds.  I am watching the door, in case we are attacked. Mum: Sorry if this blog is a little less coherent than usual.  A bit sleep deprived. Thought you might like this photo too.  It is from the wall at the back of the beach, Victorian, and must have (once upon a time) been a water fountain or drainage pipe from the cliff above.  I just loved the age of it, and the fact that, like all the best Victorian workmanship, it is still working - water was actually dribbling from the arch, and the green algae is proof that it works well!

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eeten it all

eetun all ov it.  winder stiil shut.  veri wet outsid.  thev bin gon ages. luv me. im sidnee

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THURSDAY 4th Feb: Greenwich Mean Time

Mum: Just got time to write yesterdays blog before we set off on todays Train Adventure.  Probably won't post the next one til we get back, unless the wifi at the hotel is MUCH better than expected.  We are leaving an incredibly grumpy Sidney, who has been following me round all morning screeching to have his window open.  But we are bribing him by leaving a bowl of tinned catfood in jelly, some crunchy biscuits AND an entire skinless chicken thigh.  Hopeflly he will have calmed down by tomorrow afternoon. Sidney: ! ! ! ! ! Cato: Yesterday we went in the car out to the Salt Marshes, cos Mum wanted to show you this.  I have no idea why! : Apparently we live on something called the Greenwich line, and there is a green light in the sky that we can't see.  And something about days going round in circles.  Why anyone is interested, I can't imagine.  But I had a wee against the pedestal, and sat on the line in the ground, and we played Truffle Hound Treat Finding, so it wasn't a complete waste of time. This is me playing Truffle Hound.  That is the water bowl, and Dad's foot and Mum's skirt.  Tara says my ear looks silly, but it was a bit windy, and I think it looks rakish.  Tara doesn't know what 'rakish' means. More Truffle Hound: Isn't my tail magnificent? Even though it needs a brush. And isn't this pile of poo AWESOME!!! It is horse poo.  You can tell because of the smell.  And the taste.   Tara: Cato is obsessed with poo.  I am not.  I will now show you the pretty scenic pictures.  And pics of ME.  cos that is far more interesting than Cato.  And poo. Mum says that the black dot on the horizon is a fort from some war or other.  This is me with Dad. Me on a bench.  I got up here by myself.  They should design benches so I can climb on the back too. Me and Dad walking back And (Mum says I have to show you this, because it is cute) this is a very sniffy piece of driftwood, with my proper deep footprints, and Cato's shallow footprints, cos he is so tiny and light that he hardly leaves them.  You can also see where the rain drops left footprints. Now we are going on an adventure!  On a train.  With Mum and Dad! See you when we get back!  

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WEDNESDAY 3rd Feb: Breakfast and beach

Tara: Mum didn't do her boring work thing today, and Dad wasn't doing his boring work thing til later, so we went out for breakfast sausages.  This is where they ate, and we sat under the table, like always.  The floor is very clean, which is a pity. I always hope for some dropped food, but there never is.  We then go outside, and just before we go onto the beach, Dad gets out his napkin and we sit-ever-so-good  and we get chuncks of sausage.  Then we have the strength to go and play on the beach. Dad is wearing his red hat wot Mum gave him for Christmas, and he has the glove I gave him for Christmas in his pocket.  The other glove, that Cato gave him is probably lost somewhere. The water was out today, so we could go down onto the hard sand, and under the pier.  Always lovely and sniffy under there.  You can see how big it is, compared with me. Cato: It was a very long walk today, all the way down to the edge of the marshes, and the sky was HUGE. We met a pair Shih Tzus called Bailey who is BIG, and a puppy called Dougie.  That is Bailey in the pic a short run in front of Dad.  Dougie was on the lead, poor lad, cos he doesn't have a good Recall yet. Tara chased a crow, and it was very casual about flapping off.  Almost like it didn't care. Mum tried to photo Tara lying on her back getting sniffed by a huge golden retriever, but Tara saw the camera and stood up very quickly. This photo is from near the end when I was tired and wanted to go home.  I went up to the top of the beach so show Mum where the steps were.  But I got the wrong ones, and we had to walk for ages after this.  Then I slept all evening. Sidney: They are going away.  I don't know how I feel about it.  Mum says  the heating will be on, there will be lots of food, and they will be back in less than 24 hours.  Auntie Jane is on standby, if they are delayed.  She has a key.  There was a huge discussion about whether it was 'kinder' to leave me at home, or put me in prison for a day.  I voted for staying at home.  I hate prison.  I never eat when I am there.  At least this way I get to be at home, even if the window will be shut.    

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TUESDAY 2nd Feb: Sun, wind and reed seed heads

Sidney: They have been re-doing the roof again.  Two rolls of tape now.  But there was a horrible wind, and nothing fell off, so maybe they can leave it alone now?  I spent all yesterday asleep which was nice and peaceful.  But bedtime is turning into a bit of a problem.  Now that The Brat is old enough they think they can trust her not to wee on the bed, they are allowed on the big bed for a few minutes before Lights Out.  We used to have a lovely peaceful routine.  I would get there first, and take the best spot.  Then Dad would sneak in down one edge.  Then Mum would sneak in and push me further onto Dad's side, and we would all go to sleep. Now we all have to cope with bouncing.  I tell you, it is such a relief when they get tipped into their prison in the corner, and I can actually get some rest.  The Brat seems to think that my ears need washing.  Why?  I can wash my own ears, thank you very much.   Cato: A very windy walk in the tail end of a storm, yesterday.  Very sunny, and golden, but biting wind too.  We went to the Big Park with the Lake, and walked all the way round.  Didn't see any other dogs at all!  So Tara didn't act all submissive and silly to them.  The wind swept all the smells away very quickly, so we had to sniff carefully: Mum said the light was very golden cos of the low sun, and the wind was whipping the lake into waves, but we were more interested in exploring. You can't see the coots and the ducks and the moorhens, but we were looking at them over the end of the bridge.  They thought we were going to give them some bread.  But Tara would have eaten it if we had any. And these are gulls.  There are lots of fishermen and bird watchers round this lake.  Tara likes their sandwiches, if she can get them.  Mum gets cross. Tara: Dad took us down a muddy bit and Mum said 'No!' but we tried anyway, until we saw all the mud. And then we had to turn back. This is the the cliff down to the drainage ditch.  Dad always says 'keep away from the edge!' but Mum always says 'let them fall in.  we can fish them out, and they will learn their lesson, that way, won't they?'  I think Mum is mean, but maybe I will push Cato in, one day. This is the path to the Donkey Field.  It is very dark because a big black cloud was just rolling in front of the sun, and making everything dark.  The donkeys weren't there again today.    

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MONDAY 1st Feb: Ping pong!

Tara: We went to the Little Park today, and it was ACE!  We started off in the wilderness bit, where the seeds get into your knickers, if you bounce in the long grass too much. We had a good fight there.   See how I chose the muddiest bit I could find?  This pic is just before Cato jumped on me!  You can see him plotting. Then we went with Dad into the big open bit.  See how I am skipping with excitement, cos I know what is going to happen - PING PONG!  It is the best EVER!!! So Dad goes off and hides.  Can you see him?  You might not be able to, cos you are too tall.  Maybe you can see his legs?  And he calls us, and we RUNANDRUNANDRUN as fast as we can.  And then we have to SIT.  And then we get a treat.  And then Mum calls us back. This is Cato coming back.  He won't run with me any more, because I get so excited that I bounce on him half way.  Can you see Dad, hiding? And then - this is the sneaky bit - Mum and Dad MOVE!  So we can't find them.  And we have to run about and search.  And they call.  And we look.  This is me looking for Mum.  Can you see Dad?  And I am running along behind the hedge. When I find a gap, I RUN to Mum.  And sit.  And get a treat. It is the best fun EVER! Mum says we play Ping Pong so that I will never get lost, and panic, and will always know to keep looking until I find her.  But really, it is all about RUNNING and TREATS.   Cato: We had a good walk, but Tara was, as usual, too bouncy.  In the end, I gave up on the Ping Pong, cos she kept rugby tackling me, and I went and sat by the Fox Bench to wait for them.  We sit here, and Mum and Dad throw treats for us, and we play Truffle Hound to find them in the grass. Can you see the green stains on the Fox's bum?  That is because I widdle on him every time we are in the park.  So does everyone else.  He has a very whiffy bottom. After we got home, and snoozed, and ate, Auntie Helen popped over with a parcel for Mum.  Don't think Auntie Helen likes dogs.  Tara was all over excited and licky.  Sigh.  I was much more civilised.  But she didn't really want us on her lap, so we sat on Mum instead.   Sidney: They accidently left the window open ALL DAY.  So I popped in an out a lot.  My foot hurts a bit now.  So I might take it easy for a day or two.

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SUNDAY 31st Jan: Boring Sunday

SUNDAY   Cato: We were supposed to see Auntie Jane today for breakfast (sausages, yum!) and a walk in the little park.  But she isn’t feeling well, so we didn’t.  And it was raining.  So we had a boring morning sleeping instead.  Then it rained all afternoon.  Then it got dark.  And then it was bedtime.  We didn’t do anything interesting AT ALL, ALL DAY.  I think Mum was bored too.  She decided that my Tinkle needed a trim.  I don’t like that.  But I can wee without spraying my feet now.  No, you can’t see a picture.  I got a Calcium Bone treat for sitting still.  Tara got one for being 'cute'.    Tara: Cato's bottom isn't green any more, and even the fleas have gone.  And they keep calling me in from the garden when I bark.  But what am I supposed to do?  Cato sleeps all the time, and Mum is doing boring Mum stuff.  Dad is shooting zombies on the computer.  And it is raining.  No one wants to play with me, and I haven’t been brushed since yesterday.  See how bored I am? This is my bored tummy: We did have a yellow python fight.  With the duck and the black bear!  It lasted the whole of one of Mum’s tv programmes, because she said that we were making so much noise she needed to watch it all over again.   Sidney: They keep shutting my window.  How can I check whether it is raining or not if I can’t have the window open? This is my territory.  The picture is from last Summer, before it started raining:    I get down onto the roof from the windowsill, and then along the wall, and then over the sheds, or down into the gardens.  You cn see why you need 4 good feet to patrol properly.  There are four streets all interconnected by alleys.  Lots of cats around, and lots of catflaps, and lots of catfood bowls in all these houses.  The lady with the yellow shed leaves food out for the fox.  He and I don't bother each other.  And I rule it ALL.  Of course, I have been taking a short break lately, due to my War Wound.  But I am just lulling them all into a false sense of security, and will remind them that I am In Charge very soon.

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SATURDAY 30th Jan: Green poo

Sidney: Why do I have to go first?  Silly dogs should go first then clever cats after.  I like the shed roof improvements.  I spend time on there during sunny weather, surveying my territory.  They left the central heating on all night last night, by mistake.  It was lovely.  I shall organise some pictures for you, so that you can see my territory.  I wanted to use the word 'kingdom' instead of 'territory' but Mum refused to type it.  She says I need to get a sense of proportion.  Which is absurd. I am the one who decides what to call it, aren't I?  It is MINE.   Cato: Beach walk today!  Lots of fun.  Seaweed and driftwood and it was sunny and the tide was in and my feet got wet, and the dogbiscuitcafe was closed so we couldn’t have any biscuits.  The water was so high we couldn’t walk under the pier, and had to go up on the road and then back down on the other side.  Tara got scared by a Vizsla.  Tara is always scared by big things.  She ran up some yellow steps so that she was tallest, and had to be called back down because she is a wuss.  The Vizsla only wanted to say hello, and sniff.  I couldn’t reach his bottom.  Maybe I should have climbed the steps too. This picture is me sniffing an interesting shoe, and Tara sniffing something boring. After we came home we snuggled on the sofa all evening, me and Mum.  She was tired, and she said I made her legs go numb because I am a heffalump.  Actually, I think I am a half-heffalump.  We all know who the big fat bossy whole-heffalump is, don't we?   Tara: Dad says I shouldn’t tell you this, but I HAVE to, or I shall burst!  Cato has a green bottom! Hahahaha!  A stinky pooey green bottom!  Cos he ate the green poop made by the huge geese yesterday.  Mum says she didn’t see him eating poop but he MUST have, mustn't he? And she was watching him extra extra carefully cos he is a duck poop eater too – that is why we aren’t allowed to go to the Boating Lake often.  Cos he always eats the green poop and then poops green.  Hahahaha!  Anyway, Mum says we can have some more special treats soon, just in case he has got passengers in his poop. Dad is cross because he has to go back up onto the shed roof to stick it down again.  I want to see but it is very hard to see from the ground and no-one will lift me up to see, even when I stand on their feet.  Not fair. We are going to have yummy chicken liver tomorrow, Mum says.

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How much trouble can two dogs and one cat get into...?

The first few entries are transferred from another thread, when Crystal suggested that C, T and S deserved their own blog. Great suggestion!  I just hope it doesn't go to their heads too much... Anyway because the posts were transferred across, they are slightly out of order, but not to worry - the wee beasties haven't noticed!

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