Monday - slog up Headlands in the hope that the wind and rain will make the two evils want to come home after the first hundred yards, Totally forget a Weimaraner does not do sensible! With every step I take I get the sensation that old Lucifer below is trying to grab my boots and drag me down into the mire that is the fallow fields at the moment.
Am rewarded by Tilly rolling in not only rotten potatoes but something so dead I did not want to get too close just in case it attached itself to me Alien like. Tried to wipe Tilly down with Flash wipes before she made my van smell
Tuesday - went on the beach to avoid the rotten potato and dead thing rolling problem. Used Flash wet wipes on Tilly to try and get rid of the dead fish and bird poo smell obtained by rolling on the aforementioned before she stank my van out
Wednesday - staggering along sand dunes to avoid rotten potato, something dead, bird poo and dead fish rolling problem. Used Flash wipes to try and rid of rabbit guts and dog vomit (don't even ask) smell obtained by rolling on the aforementioned before she stank my van out.
Thursday - the weather is so foul that madam decides she does not want to get out of bed, ours that is not hers. I think the above picture explains her general opinion of my attempts to drag her out, buy drag her out I did.
Back down the beach. Tilly nearly gets me a telling off some observers of the awful weather in the comfort of their car by running straight off the beach slip way and doing a splat dog impression on the sand approx two to three feet below. Pretended that it's not only my dogs that can't hear in the wind and rain, but me also as I am lacking the time and patience to explain this is normal behaviour for Tilly and I gave up having kittens a long time ago at her attempts to break her neck.
Five minutes into my attempt at doing the horizontal Time Warp against the elements, Tilly decides to about turn and run back to the van as the rain is disagreeable to her today, which sort of makes me wonder what was wrong with Monday, Tuesday and Wednesdays rain?!
Friday - Vet day for Hector. Only speed once, cut up two taxi's and run one amber light (they go amber before red in Jersey - not amber before green) and give one disgruntled driver on his mobile the bird (the raised finger to those wondering) before safely reaching vet hospital.
Good news, after fine needle aspirations his lumps are confirmed as nothing to worry about. I knew that as Les told me they die with them rather than die of them, but hey I would rather know before they kill me of stress wondering if they are nothing. Only down side is that his eyes are deteriorating due to age. They are also as scratched as hell due to his hunting capabilities. My vet picks him up to put him on the table so he can give his undercarriage a good looking at and tells me that Hector is one of only four big dogs he would do that too without the worry of a bite and two of those are his - just the little things like this make you burst with pride.
Hector confirms the vet's opinion that he is super fit by dragging me out of the surgery head first resulting in the double doors being given a Glasgow kiss on passing.
Two days of beautiful sunshine have been followed with two days of heavy showers. I've had to time our walks to avoid a soaking and I have not been too successful. The two evils have either run back to the van leaving me soaked, refused to get out of the van leaving me soaked or tried to gain shelter under the golfing brolly with me - leaving them soaked :-)
Today I time my morning walk perfectly. It was windy and looking very bleak over the headlands towards France, but it was dry. We took advantage of this by meandering back along the public path via the blackberry bushes. A lovely walk in the wind is perfectly rounded off by a feast of berries according to Weimaraner logic.
I will never tire of watching the way my two delicately nibble at the ripe berries, avoiding impaling their tongues on the thorns or the accidental ingestion of an unripe berry. For a breed that has the eating habits of a dung beetle (or is that just mine?) watching them balance on tip toes always makes me smile. Unfortunately it does not always make others smile as well.
We "nibbled" round the corner to be faced with a rather cross looking man waving his margarine tub in our direction. I was thus informed "I've watched you let your dogs eat all the berries along the pathway. Besides being greedy it is not hygienic for others that might want to collect some". You know I have just experienced one of the most awful school Summer holidays of shitty dogs and their shitty owners with their shitty kids (and in some cases I do mean shitty) invading my enjoyment of peaceful walks so I think I can be excused for my retort of "well I have to let them feed on the bushes on the way back because they wee all over the bushes on the way out" and yes I did point to the direction he had come from as the said bushes of the "on the way out" in discussion.
The look on his face more than made up for the one Hail Mary I owe him above.
Having said that, and before anyone can say I give dog owners a bad name, I did get my come uppance.
Upon watering my two when back at the van I automatically went to throw the residue water over my shoulder like I always do so I can put the bowl back dry. Shame I did not do a finger to the wind check as, yes you guessed it, I ended up with a face full of water blown straight back via the wind.
Divine intervention me thinks as God has probably got a handle on us Weimaraner owners by now.......
Not blogged for ages. Not sure if its lack or time or inclination or maybe just no brains left after suffering the summer with my two!
We are still a bit worried about Hector and his "quiet" moments, but me thinks he is still as mentally alert as ever and still capable of actions showing just what a turd he can be.
August brought Jersey and the Battle of Flowers as per usual and as per normal, it didn't rain on our particular parade - out of interest, if anyone is bored, perhaps they can tell me when it actually did, if ever, do the latter on Battle of Flowers day. Anyway, I am drifting as I am given to do, so back to what I was saying....with Battle of Flowers comes the highlight of the bored off on school holidays little darlings of Jersey, the fairground that visits our shores on Peoples Park. As a result said area becomes a den of inequity for a fortnight but I really am not even going to start going there!!
On Sundays Hector and I partake of a leisurely walk with my mum from her abode to said Park for a mooch and a spot of fresh air. It is Hector and my time with "granny" who, in Hector's eyes, is nothing other than a treat dispensing machine that can be mugged. The fairground was in the process of clearing up and the rides being dismantled ready for their ferry trip back to whence they came. The fairground people are a colourful breed as are the choice of mutts that they leave wandering about under the pretence of "security". Their living areas are located towards one end of the park and fenced off by means of plastic sheeting.
Upon my mum, Hector and I walking past this living area arrangement (do you know that they actually have full sized washing machines that they use outside of their caravans!) one very large and dirty looking GSD decided to do a Clint Eastward and ask Hector to make his day by barking at his precious treat dispensing machine....errrrr sorry I mean my mum. Please remember Hector has just passed ten years of age, is minus five teeth - two of those his canine grippers - and has more lumps than my Sunday dinner custard. In short, I went mental as I thought my precious darling was going to get savaged albeit after my mum.
As it was, Hector chose not to make this manky curs day and instead he took off after him, easily outpacing him, the result of which was a body slamming into the ground and an exorcist growl right down his left ear hole. Sort of spoil my histrionics a bit as I had to change gear and pull my dog off of the poor hound that I had just been screaming at the owners to stop from savaging my "old harmless boy". Being the soil of the Earth type of people, not only did the fair people applaud Hector but the owner of the defeated GSD actually offered in jest (I hope) to buy my dog because he "sure as hell landed my bugger one". I am sure this episode went a little way to invigorate my boy somewhat as he pulled me back to my mum's with a tail that was showing a little high in attitude for my liking
A clear case of if you don't have the balls to finish what you start then keep out of the old, gummy, cantankerous Weimaraners way because he sure as hell will finish it for you!
That was Sunday.......I'm not finished yet
Wednesday, with it being hot again, I chose to walk through a lovely valley called Waterworks Valley for the reasons that don't need stating when wanting to walk somewhere cool with your dogs.
I was alerted to oncoming horses and quickly recalled Tilly due to the fact not only does she have such a high prey drive she can be prone to chasing anything that moves, she also has a terrible habit of screaming at horses and frightening not only the four legged ones but their two legged riders. We were faced by two ladies, one on a absolutely beautiful Appaloosa that every child dreamt of owning and riding back during their cowboy and Indian dream days. This lady stopped and dismounted as she wanted to speak to me about the two "lovely dogs so beautifully controlled" (yeah she probably needed glasses and was a bit deaf). My first thought was "shit" as I really wanted to move on as I could feel Tilly starting to shake from the tail upwards and when the shake reaches her ears that's when she starts to scream. I have no need to describe to a fellow Weimarener owner the sound or outcome of such a screaming session so you will understand my trying to bring the conversation with tonto pronto!
Just as I was rounding up on the description of the responsibilities of owning a Weimaraner I noticed her horse was a bit fidgety. I also noticed her still mounted companion's eyes wandering towards the back of her friends horse where Hector was lingering. I have no worries with Hector around horses as a rule. Should of learnt by now that this dog was bred to break rules. Hector was quite happily cocking his leg up against the poor horsey's back legs. Doing one then the other! I think the poor horse was suprised as well as if that were me I would of utilised my powerful legs for sending into orbit one disrespectful grey dog.
What was just as bad was the fact the little sod refused to come back to me and decided to try and catch the dragon flies from the stream to change the conversation he knew was coming.
Again a case, me thinks, of a Weimaraner having the final word.
The above has removed the rose tinted glasses with which I have been viewing Hector's recovery through. I think I can now return to gluing the "he is NOT my dog" sign back on when out with him.
Mind you, Tilly has started to show disturbing turd like behaviour of Hector's proportions by drinking the raspberry flavoured vodka I was soaking my gold chain in to clean (someone told me it would work honest). Although I do not advocate any of the above behaviour as anything but irresponsible on my behalf, I did notice that instead of tormenting me during the afternoon until her second walk, Tilly was unusually sound asleep in our bed until "daddy darling" came home from work!
Not only has the sun come out these last two weeks but so has my poor Wontis' teeth!
Nature has given us both a nudge to acknowledge it's passing of time by realising that Hector is in his Autumn years. He has been licking his lips a lot these last couple of months and although he has been the unwilling recipient of anti biotics and anti inflammatory, his lip licking remained.
His teeth are virtually flat. A nasty habit of stone carrying has rendered them so. He will inflame me by wandering off, the proud owner of some new ball in excess of five pounds worth, just to meander back in to sight carrying a stone. He even resorts to standing waist deep in the sea just out of reach of a collar grabbing to remove said offensive item. It is a habit that now, at ten years of age, has brought home all its negatives.
My vets are absolutely brilliant and I did not have to take him in to surgery until it was his time to go in. This stopped him languishing in a cage from early morning till early afternoon when he was operated on. Of course, this only gave me more time to worry and fret as us owners do. Would rather have sent Colin to the dentist than my WontisLOL
I was more uptight than usual due to my vet impressing on me that this was going to be quite major surgery as dogs teeth are not as easily "pulled" as human ones. Least to say after two and half hours under anesthetic he had five teeth removed. Two top canines and two lower back teeth and one tiny little front tooth that he broke as a puppy and should, by all rules of nature, fallen out before he reached adulthood. This was Wednesday last and we manged to pick him up at 6.30pm the same day.
He cried for two nights and three days thanks to the anesthetic. All my Weimaraners have done this and it usually works in our favour as the vets can't wait to get rid of them once fully recovered due to their vocalisation. I won't describe the guilt as we all know what that is like (raised eyes) at the sight of our precious hounds all baggy eyed and wobbly legged. Our worry of Tilly proving feral at his disadvantage proved not necessary as she just wanted to be with him to the extent she even gave me the evils as was positive I was the author of his ills, which I was or certainly was feeling like
Anyway, after six days of spoiling and restricted exercise he got the all clear to go ahead for normal turd behaviour to resume, which he duly did by doing a double backed half pike somersault in to the undergrowth on the headlands and going AWOL for ten minutes. He just had to re assert his in charge status above us mere humans :)
Levity aside, it has been a reminder by nature of his age, something we tend to forget due to his despot behaviour. It has also given both Hector and I plenty excuses to languish a bit longer in bed having cuddles, something I will not be taking for granted so much in future. It has been awful to see his mouth so swollen and full of stitches, but I am just grateful I have my Wontis back
This is a wonderful article about how brilliant it is when a re-homing goes right. It really needed to be shared and I think the picture says it all as Neo is jumping for joy!
What Did I Do?
(A Weimeraner– eye view to rehoming)
Well, I’m really not sure where it all started. As a young chap, I had nice food (French I believe!), a comfy crate to sleep in at night, and someone to come in at lunch time to walk me. Then, I had some different food with lots of pretty colours – hey, as long as I had food, that was fine with me! My Mum & Dad loved me very much & we had loads of cuddles, especially in the evening when I’d sit on Daddy’s lap! I really didn’t like being left on my own, and tried to tell Mum & Dad this by crying when they went upstairs or left me on my own. I found it helped to take my mind off my loneliness if I had something to chew. For some reason, the chews I found were not things I should have tried to chew. They were things called kitchen handles, kitchen units, and my favourite, skirting boards! But, they were there and they really did help to take my mind off things. Then, Mummy’s tummy started growing – it was very odd, and my walks seemed somehow to get slower. Then there were lots of conversations between Mum and Dad about me and what they were going to do. Sometimes there would be water running from their eyes and they would be very upset – I got really worried that I’d done something really awful. One day a really nice lady who smelt of lots of other dogs came to speak to Mum and was really interested in me too. We went for a walk together which was lovely, and she was so nice.
Lots and lots of time seemed to pass, and more and more boxes appeared in the house and more and more things seemed to disappear. This made me so worried that I needed to find more chew things to try and take my mind off it – but it didn’t help. Mum and Dad kept getting water running from their eyes, and it would get worse when I tried to play with them or tease them into laughing. I was getting really, really worried by then.
Then, one day, we got up really early, and Mum & Dad were in a very strange mood, and kept cuddling me. Some people I hadn’t seen before came to speak to Mum & Dad, & they too smelt of lots of dogs. Things got stranger from there in! We went for a walk with these people, and they walked with Mum, Dad & me for a while and then one of them disappeared. She came back shortly after with one of her dogs – a Weimaraner like me! – It was great fun to walk with someone else, and it was a girl Weimaraner too! Shortly after, yet another dog came to join in with our walk – I hadn’t had so much fun in ages! We then went back home and Mum & Dad’s eyes were really leaking badly by then. I was so worried that I’d done something awful, and was very upset. Then Daddy asked me to get into the new people’s van (he’d never asked me to do that before). Before I knew it, the boot was shut and I was next to my new friends, the girl Weimaraner and a couple of other dogs. I must say, they were all very friendly, but it was very frightening. I had my own water bowl in the cage in the van, and I really think the water smelt funny – the others said it was a rescue remedy that made it like that, but I still don’t understand why you’d want to rescue water, but hey, it tasted OK. Anyway, that was the last time I ever saw my Mum & Dad. I was very sad for a while, but I started chatting to my new friends, and they had such stories to tell that I soon forgot my worries. We arrived at a farm that we were to stay at for a few days and my new friends and I flew around the garden there for ages, I hadn’t had so much fun for ages. Perhaps these new people wouldn’t be too bad – they seemed very friendly.
That first night with the new people was wonderful. I still got shut in a crate like I did at my house, but this one was HUGE, and it was in the bedroom with the new people and my new friends. It was so nice having company at night, I was so tired and happy I fell asleep straight away. In the morning, the new lady quietly took me out of my cage & she had a lead in her hand. I wasn’t sure what was going on, but it turned out she was taking me for a WALK! – Oh my goodness, I hadn’t been for a walk early in the morning for ever! It was wonderful to smell all the smells on the fresh dew, we had a fantastic time and I really hoped I could stay with these new people for ever. The pattern of walking, playing with my friends and going for drives in the van carried on for the next few days, I even started getting some really yummy food in my bowl which made my tummy feel loads better than the pretty looking food, and I didn’t want it to ever end.
My new friends said that when new dogs come into the family, they always stay so I should not worry, but I got really scared when the new people started packing things into the van. I thought that they were going to leave me too, and I got so upset. Imagine my delight then when I found out that they were never going to leave me and I was going to go for a long ride in the van, go on a big boat and start my new life on an island with more dog walks than I’d ever seen in my life.
The new people are my new Mum & Dad, I love them dearly, and more than that, I know that they really love me too. It’s the most wonderful feeling in the world. We’ve had good times - and bad, the worst being when my doggy friends had to leave us suddenly. My Mum says they are waiting for us at a place called Rainbow Bridge, and that they are very happy and have no pain now, for which I’m pleased, and I look forward to seeing them again someday. I now have a couple of new friends which I love very dearly, and I also have friends I have made doing this thing called agility. I’m told I’m very good at this agility business, I just need to concentrate. (What people don’t realise is that with so many wonderful things in my life these days, it’s very difficult to concentrate on just one of them at a time!) When you’ve been without, you just learn to appreciate all the great things in life that you never knew you were missing out on. I just feel sorry for all those dogs that will never know all the wonderful experiences that I have been through over the last year.
So, if any of you dogs are worried as it looks as if you are not going to be living with your Mum & Dad any more, don’t be worried, you too may end up with another brilliant new Mum & Dad and have more fun than you ever thought possible. Remember, these Mum & Dad’s choose you for who you are & what you can become, they don’t mind what you may or may not have done in the past. Give them a chance and they will give you a chance too. Life can be better than you ever dreamt.
All my dreams have come true over the last year – I hope yours do too!
Not an encouraging start to the week for me or the dogs. These episodes of distracted moments seem to be increasing on my behalf and this one is right up there along with running my mum over and gluing Tilly's ear to her collar.
I had to take Hector to the vet and on my way to them I stopped at the garage to get fuel along with a bottle of screen wash. I purchased the latter as there has been an article in our paper how those who use screen wash are less likely to get Legionnaire's disease from the water in their screen wash facility in their vechicles (I know, I know, likely hood of which is about 1,000,000/1 in reality)
As I do with most of my stuff, said bottle of screen wash was chucked on to the passenger seat of the van and off I set. Our only dual carriage way on the Island is undergoing road works at the moment. The tail backs are horrific and you proceed at a snail's pace, if moving at all. It's quiet warm out and I was idly admiring the nice (ok, half undressed) workmen going about earning their daily crust on said road works when I reached across to get the bottle of water that resides on my passenger seat along with the rest of my "crap" that Colin so cruelly describes my articles of importance that live in my van. I didn't look what I was doing as I repeat this action at least ten time a day.
I unscrewed the cap of the bottle and took a swig. Just as well the traffic was stationary as I had to fling the van door open and bring half my stomach contents up at the side of the road. I can tell you know why they recommend you use screen wash to avoid Legionnaire's Disease - it tastes awful and strips the inside of your mouth! I had, stupidly grabbed the wrong bottle. I was so humiliated as the nice men I had just seconds before been admiring were now trying to help me and must of thought I was having some sort of fit as I was dribbling bright blue liquid from my mouth. It did not help that Hector and Tilly decided to put on their "lets audition for Hound of the Baskervilles" act on as the noise caused some people to wind up their windows.
I could hardly speak to the vet when I finally arrived and I am sure he must of thought I had lost my voice due to screaming at my two evils. I wasn't going to correct him as it was not one of my finest moments I must admit.
Occupied myself with a weekend of agility Bank Holiday just past. At the age of ten I wasn't expecting much from Hector, but he did me proud in as much that he stayed in the ring and did not humiliate me too much.
First class I entered he lost concentration a bit and waffled enough to get us eliminated but at least I did not have to scream at him and only issued one "bugger" at him. The second class entered I pushed him out of the entry to the weaves. Our weaves have always been a down point as I am not good at them. It wasn't third time lucky either as I forgot which way to go, which I was so annoyed about as although we would not of won we would of had a nice clear round if it I had not picked those five faults up.
Considering we have not entered anything since October last year and only been to one training session since, I think Hector let me off very lightly. It was also open cl assess of grade 1-7 dogs so maybe a bit out of our reach anyway. I know my sticking point has always been winding him up enough to get him going, but I have spent so long calming my Weims down it is a hard habit to break as you know how once you wind they up it is hard to find the off switch LOL.
Weather was ok(ish) bad wind on the Saturday gave me a bad earache and I felt like a big pink pimple on the scenery when it was my turn to do the poles as I was sitting with my pink hoody up and my face all pink from the wind. The judges were from the UK as were some competitors. All a nice bunch of people. One thing that stood out for me was this tiny little Italian Greyhound that was standing waiting to go in all shaking and I thought how cruel as it did not look like it wanted to be there. How wrong I was, it flew round the ring leaving a show of paws in its wake. Brilliant to watch
On the Tuesday they had a class on the beach which was nice to see as they used to take agility on the beach until the powers that be introduced their draconian anti dog laws. Hector just dug holes and ran off trying to swim, hence the reason I did not enter him in it as the beach is for digging and swimming according to my Wontis. Tilly pulled a real good one and took off after a horse that came from behind me and which I did not hear. Got loads of comments as to how fast she was and the rider brought her back for me as he said she started getting distressed when she realised she did not know where she was. Nearly had a heart attack trying to run after her to get her back as if I could keep up with horse and hound.
The waiting between classes can still be trying for me and the dogs as it is something we still not used to, having come into agility at a late age. So long as Hector enjoys it I will persevere because he can still pull a good round and win a pretty ribbon at times. Plenty time for him to humiliate me more......and there is Tilly to try as yet (god help me)
I love to feel very much part of nature when walking with the two evils of a morning. The feeling of companionship is unique when sharing with your dog.
Then there are the down sides.
Three lessons learnt of late are:-
1 Do not wear lip gloss when dog walking as strolling through a cloud of midges leaves one looking like they have been at the 100 and 1,000's tin again, albeit all black eurgh....
2 Do NOT under any circumstances how your hand out to your dog whilst adopting the stern "leave it" command unless one is 100% sure that the illicit goods they are trying to quaff are not in the form of fossilised turds, origins of which are unknown!
3 Do not wear large hair butterfly clips whilst trying to dodge under the electric wire enclosing livestock fields. The result of this is much humour vocally from farm workers picking the spuds at the sight of one strange woman doing river dance whilst apparently being electrocuted by said wire. Just as well the aforementioned farm workers do not speak English (at least my very foul version at the time) as they might of taken a bit longer to come and untangle me.
It has been mentioned I must of looked like the Bride of Frankenstein being brought to life whilst on the receiving end of these shocks. In future only elastic bands will be used to tie back my hair whilst walking
May I point out that in no way was any animal hurt or mistreated whilst initiating or viewing the above......until I got home that is.........................
Walking my dogs over the beautiful landscape of this Island is what makes my days. I find being with them eases the burdens of life, well sort of as sometimes they can be the cause of said burdens. When Hector starts doing the River dance on the kitchen lino at 8am, I know today is going to be a “burden”.
I’ve purchased a new secret weapon and have been dying to try it out on Hector. Before we can even think of our walk to come we have to run the gauntlet of Stuka dive bombing seagulls presently nesting on our roofs. No matter how nonchalantly we start off me and Hector end up running for our lives across the car park as visions of Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” invade my mind. The fact that I head butt the van door whilst ducking to avoid a near miss does nothing to improve my temper. Not even a shrieked piss off improves my temper. Poor Hector jumps in the van, tail between his legs, thinking that the foul language is directed at him as per usual and I am starting early on him this morning.
Things go from bad to worse when I remember I fused the radio yesterday when my bottle of caffeine fuelled coke (gave up on the water as too healthy) fizzed and exploded over it. Echo’s of an “I told you that was going to happen at some stage” from the husband prompts me to reach for the fags. Then realise I haven’t got any as I am giving up. Not to worry as three bad starts mean I am going to have an incident free walk – in theory.
I decide to go to the woods to test my new secret weapon to the best of its ability. I have to park a the car park at the bottom of the hill and walk up it to get to the path that leads into the woods and this will be a perfect test for my new weapon (any ideas yet). I park up, open the van, grab an unsuspecting Hector with an evil smirk and produce my new piece of equipment.
Out comes my lovely new Tutti Fruttii coloured anti pulling lead. We are talking high tech here to the tune of £30. It is made from the same elasticised material as bungee jumping ropes and it has a special handle shaped like a water skiing grip to improve hold and comfort. It is real smart and is going to help me enforce the fact I am in control to Hector. Hector doesn’t even look at it and has me flat on my face up the bank within two seconds. Ok, that was an accident and now we are on the road surface, technology is going to prove its worth.
I spend the next five minutes being jerked and bounced around at the end of this bloody lead as it extends and snaps back into shape as Hector stops to sniff as he charges up the hill. Perhaps the lead needs a breaking in period as well as Hector as he obviously hasn’t got the idea he is NOT supposed to be able to pull on it. Half way up and I am thinking how to compose my demand a refund letter politely. Designers of said lead obviously did not use a Weimaraner to test the prototype. Was just thinking of money and drains when Hector spies the Chickens.
Just near the entrance of the woods is a lovely little chocolate box cottage. This is a typical Jersey affair. This cottage has loads of free running chickens and ducks in its drive and garden. Hector knows that they are there and just gives them the cursory “I could kill you in a split second if I chose to” look. Shame he didn’t give it to the Peacock that was stalking us from behind.
At first we thought the sudden outbreak of panicked squawks of the chickens were due to our push me pull you presence. It is strange though as the chickens mostly just eyeball us insolently when we walk this way. I don’t know what made me turn around; call it a sixth sense, but I wish I hadn’t. Behind us was a Peacock doing a Road Runner impression up the hill. If there is one thing I dislike it is Peacocks. This stems from being chased by one as a kid on the farms. The shear fear at this exotic coloured animal running towards me whilst emitting this unearthly screaming wail (think screaming sea sirens luring sailors to the depths of the ocean) brought back all these childhood memories of being victimised by one. When it suddenly paused to shudder and display its wondrous tail, Hector freaked. At this point I will mention that the “fearless” part of his CV is being scraped. Hector did a Scooby Doo in the same direction as the retreating chickens up the driveway of the little cottage. I think at this point Peacock upped a gear in glee at getting such a dramatic response from us. He could of being defending the poor chickens, under the impression Hector and I were a threat. Whatever Peacocks reasons, I decided to go along with Hector’s choice of actions anyway.
Actually, I didn’t really have a choice as the high tech anti pull lead sort of bungeed me behind him.
The sight of the steep banked topped with a lovely little privet hedge in our path made me miss a stride. Not so Hector who has the advantage of four legs. He is up it like Colin Jackson. I, being less than agile on a good day, am slammed face first into the bank. As the extending capabilities of my arm start to get tested along with the new lead, I desperately try to gain purchase of the bank surface and follow my Grey Ghost. It is really hard when you are trying to crawl up a wet, muddy bank with one hand extended above your head whilst attached to a 33kg panicked dog who give not a toss about your welfare or safety. My hand was also jammed through the water ski grip by now. Hector had nearly reached the top when my hand came free of the grip. For a split second we were both stopped in our desperate escape. Then the bungee lead twanged back into shape and the hard water ski handle thwacked Hector right in the back of the head. He managed to give me that hooded Hooker on a street corner look before he overbalanced in shock and slithered back down the bank right on my head.
I landed first with Hector landing on me askew across my shoulders like the sort of old Fox pelt shawl my Gran used to wear. He had the same stuffed open mouth expression as well, but that could have been because he had the wind knocked out of him. This did have one welcome effect though. This Peacock may have been brave, but it wasn’t suicidal. The fear of being squashed by a less than selevette human and dog clearly did not appeal. It retreated at least twenty yards back.
I was just about to overcome my fear of this bloody bird and wring its neck when the cottage door opened. Out comes this old bird (two legged in this case) waving a huge bloody broom in our general direction. Her warblings were more unearthly than the Peacocks. I have a serious respect for the generation of Jersey people that were here during the War and German Occupation. This old Jersey maid had to date before then easily; her appearance was a frightening as her speed of approach impressive. She obviously thought she was being invaded again and was making a stand this time. I just closed my eyes, held my Hector close to my chest (might soften the blows!) and waited to be brained senseless by a pile of dangerous bristles.
I can’t do a Jersey accent as most of it is French based anyway, but instead of being “broomed” I was helped to my feet with the words “it the second time this week that bugger has done this”. It turns out that the Peacock is hers and he has developed a warped sense of humour and hides in the bushes, using the chickens for bait, and chases anything that wonders close to them. Today was our turn to “come on down” – literally as it turns out.
My nerves are truly shot to pieces after this. I manage to collect what piece of pride I have left, get to my feet and wiped the imbedded mud and grass from my attempts at climbing the bank slowly and coming down quickly and decide that I want to go home whilst I am still physically able. Hector will have to be walked later. Like two fags and a tumbler of brandy later. I pay my respects to my saviour and with as much grace as I can, allow Hector to bungee pull me back out of the cottage driveway.
High tech bungee jumping lead did win the battle of “no we are going bloody home now and not the woods”. Unfortunately it did not survive the severe chewing it got in temper from one cheesed off, walk deprived Hector. I stupidly left it on him in the back of the van on the way home. Hector may not have any respect for high technology and my money, but he is certainly going to respect Peacocks from now isn’t he.
According to expert advice – nothing in life is simply black or white, there are areas of grey. Said areas of grey can come in the form of a huge crevasse in which one can throw themselves physically and mentally into when everything they believe in comes into doubt and turmoil by hitting an area of fabled grey.
Isn’t it appropriate then that Weimaraners only come in, supposedly, one colour – Grey!
Its coming up to a year since we re-homed Tilly and I think you will remember my excited description of her arrival as well as describing her appearance as a delicate “Twiggy” like dog. If only I knew that “Twiggy” bore more than a passing resemblemance to Beelzebub with the tendencies of Hannibal Lector I would of tempered my enthusiasm a bit more.
She has taken Hector, Colin, my mum, my friends my vets and various “experts” to the limits. The worst resulting in both Colin and I (and nearly my vet) being in tears as both her and Hector were admitted for repairs after Hector dropped from his first epileptic fit and Tilly tried to take him out. I don’t mean have a dig at him, I mean a full detach the jugular from the body for main course and lets see if I can get the eyeballs at the same time type of decapitation job whilst he was out of it. The best being her no longer viewing the back of my van as an enclosed area of threat and jumping into it happily in anticipation of her exercise. Both reactions opposite ends of extreme, but the word extreme was made with dogs like Tilly in mind.
She has made me question my beliefs, capability and above all, my commitment. At times this little girl has put me to shame with her trust that, together, we could bring her out of whatever dark place she was in and can still slip into occasionally. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy as she is not my first Weimaraner and not even my first rescue and I always said that however long they were in unsuitable circumstances you can at least double that before you even start to put right the wrong caused to them. Even then I was being optimistic as I know realize there is no specific time to apply the salve of healing
Please, don’t get me wrong, even though a steep learning curve, Tilly has been one of the best things I have ever done. The other three have been having Jazz, Beau and Hector - Oh and after a thump from the husband reading this over my shoulder – marrying him! Of course Hector deserves what ever he desires in his doggy dreams as through out all this he has had to overcome with his own problems, he is still there like a shot if he ever so much as thinks his Tilly is under threat and Tilly relies on his support when in doubt.
To show you to what extent Hector takes his duties seriously when it comes to rehabilitating Tilly he killed a “Henry” Hoover! I was walking with my two nephews and four Weims (summer holidays and recent terrorist threats – long story) over the headlands. Hector was doing protector and leader very seriously and was slightly ahead of me, but not out of our safety zone. Come our approach to the model airplane runway Tilly took fright at the open back of a white van. Hector immediately reacted and went to her aid. This resulted in loads of growls and one poor man headbutting the ceiling of his van. Hector had looked in the back of the van as to what was threatening Tiilly and seen a Henry Hoover. Ever seen one of those Henry Hoovers?
They are small and round and brightly coloured with a bowler type hat painted on top of a smiling face. Hector through it was real and killed it much to the fright of the poor bloke sitting in the front trying to eat his sandwiches in peace. Either the bloke had a great sense of humor or was too frightened to say anything as Hector pissed up his hoover as a parting shot. Mind you, his van was now surrounded by all of us two and four footed and we might have just resembled something out of Deliverance!
Hector does this after Tilly has put him in the vets twice for serious injuries and still continues to temper his responses to her with patience and understanding. Now what does that say for this wonderful dog and the lesson he can give to us humans?
She, in herself, has rewarded us with laughter in two different ways. The first way by reducing us to hysterical laughter. She is outside in the sun when all of a sudden she comes flying into the sitting room as if the Devil himself is after her. Colin, Hector and I are trying to not only catch her, but the furniture she is knocking about in the process. It takes a rugby tackle to bring her down and still we cannot see what the cause of this performance is, is until a strange smell makes us turn our heads to the relevant end. Grassy poos – need I say more?! A grassy poo has frightened out “Dills” and needs removing…eurgh…but worth the laughter it brought into our home. The second way was the laughter of happiness when she tried to tell “Daddy” that she had a thorn in her paw and knew he would make it better. That type of laughter you cannot buy, the laughter born of trust.
She adores Hector, “Daddy” and my mum but can find me threatening. She has no reason for this and I found it hard to accept at first, but had to realize all this was not about me, but about Tilly. I simply have had to take a back seat in her affections until she realises I give love as well as confidence born of being safe under my “command”. She now thinks before she reacts. Colin likes to say that she is more like me than I realize as I use the powers of my mouth before my brain at times! She was not born aggressive but used aggression as a tool as taught. She just has to learn and has done, that there are different and better options.
For me personally the worst time was being in hospital being stitched. The best was her achieving KC Bronze obedience standard something I have never done with the three before her. Like the credit card advert says – priceless and it was until she broke that in vet’s fees as well….
As you will be well aware by now I am given to waffle and could keep you up all night till dawn about this remarkable little dog. Could we not all do the same about all our treasured and unique grey ones?
What I want to say is the next time someone quotes the areas of grey to you, do not be down hearted as the one thing Tilly has taught me is that sometimes you can start at the area of white and hit the depths of the black before you discover the grey. It’s neither a bad colour nor a bad place to be, especially if you are doing it for love and I am still...
If photographed by Wegman, with those massive doe eyes in a face framed by huge ears as symmetrical as a Sassoon bob and legs as thin and long as a thoroughbred, she would be dressed as Twiggy in a Flapper dress and ostrich feathers. I took one look at the little bag of nerves and bones standing in front of me and Hector’s status as “our last Weimaraner” slowly slipped without further thought into the sunset.
When the call came that there was a little female in the Animals Shelter that needed help, I was only going to go down to offer any words of advice that were practical. I was informed by Colin that draft divorce papers could, no doubt, be obtained on eBay these days and not to even THINK about bringing her home. With this in mind I stood there and thought about it ….. for all of two seconds. They phoned on the Tuesday, I saw her on the Thursday and by Friday she was in my van and I was on the phone saying I wasn’t bringing her back from her trial walk with Hector. She was 17 months old, had been on her own for 10 months and was as skinny as a whippet and wasn’t eating in the kennels and had lost her voice through stress, so of course divorce was the lesser of two evils and besides that, Colin has been divorcing me since I first brought Jazz home fifteen years ago.
Do we regret it? Well, when she first started screaming in the van and wet the entire vet bedding in it, no. When Colin started having to wear aircraft noise ear defenders to drive – sort of! When we watched her eat without coming up for air and collapsing into the deep sleep of the secure on our sofa, no. When she woke me up at 2am in the morning and presented me with three piles of puke and one wet carpet – sort of!
Within the first two weeks of having her, Hector has given me that “ok, I’ve done my bit you can take her back now” look. When that failed he tried to drown her. She loves to run, more to the point she loves to run Hector down. With this in mind Hector ran into the rough sea and promptly timed his dropped ball with the onset of the next wave. As she lowered her head to pick up the bobbing ball, she disappeared under the froth. Hector was out of the water and up the beach doing a victory roll with a vertical tail. Mummy was doing a Pamela Anderson (in her dreams) and diving, ok, clumsily wading, into the water to drag one winded and half drowned dog out of the incoming tide. I am not sure whether I consider her fearless in following Hector into the sea like that or just plain stupid. In which ever case the word stupid was pretty germane as I squelched back to the van.
Twice she fell for Hector’s tactics these first few weeks, until she turned tables and tried to suffocate him. She has no body awareness. Now before I hear your cries of “silly girl, dogs don’t do body awareness”, please let me re-word that. She has no awareness of other person’s bodies – two or four legged. I have had to scrap Colin off of the bedroom ceiling a couple of times and been in receipt of a high pitched “that does it” – well I think that is what he said but he was kind of red faced with pain at the time. I’ve also woken up to being stood all over and with a bum parked on my nose. But with Hector it was pay back time. Hector loves getting under the bed covers, yes, yes, awful habit I know and one not MANY Weimaraner owners indulge in (you are all liars). She, so far, has treated this conspicuous lump with respect borne of a couple of fang marks from said “lump”. Not so this night. She looked at me, then looked at the lump, then looked at me again, her little neck straining and her ears framed forward like a hooded Cobra ready to strike. Hector’s fate was sealed. Up she came and sat on his head, pining him face first into the mattress. She further confirmed her intent by placing her two front legs on his shoulders preventing him from twisting up and out from underneath her. Hell hath no fury…..as Hector learned.
She has been introduced to our family and friends and all their “you are doing the wrong thing” comments have been forgotten upon sight of this little Bambi like dog. Even the postman adores her. Just one look from her beautiful amber eyes under those long eyelashes make me forget that two seconds before, whilst being dragged by a dog that thinks the only way to walk on a lead is on her stomach in top gear, I really WAS going to drive her straight back to those kennels.
I am forever grateful that I have a superb dog in Hector. He has been holed and howled at, prodded in every crevice of his body by her demanding paws and now never gets the opportunity to be first at anything without being pushed out of the way by her. He accepts this all as he knows he is loved and we will still be there for him tomorrow to get cuddles off of. He knows she needs to understand that she too will have us here for all her tomorrows.
We have a long way to go with her, but we are committed to getting there.
Our Tilly is certainly no clean slate, but she is a totally open book and we are all waiting to fill the her next chapter with our love for her
There are some occasions when you could quite happily murder your Weim and just know that if you came up before a jury of other Weimaraner owners they would class your desperate act as justifiable homicide. They seem to have this uncanny knack of knowing when you are not up to your usual authoritable self and take delight in squeezing every last drop of sanity and dignity out of you. This day was one of those days. I suppose it was my fault really as I had a hangover of Mount Etna proportions, except it wasn't lava I was spewing.
I don't drink really (one Hail Mary). Well I don't drink that often (two Hail Fathers). Ok, will give up whilst the going is good and begin this Tail.
New Years Eve just past and I quickly go to my friend Joanne for a cup of tea (was driving) with Beau to wish them a premature Happy New Year, prior to their party celebrations. They are amongst my closest of friends and I want to see them, but I assure Colin and Hector I will not be long. Four O'clock New Years Day morning I have vague recollections of being put behind the dog guard of my friend Sioban's four wheel drive. Beau and an equally drunken Sioban are in the back seat and her poor husband, who was the only one who did stick to tea that night, drove me home. I really can't tell you anymore than that as I honestly do not remember going to bed, let alone whose bed I was in. What I mean is, it could of been one of the dog's beds instead of my own.
Next morning I open one eye and wonder what happened to my other eye. I then realise that I could of opened both eyes at once if I would of been in any fit state to take my mascara off last night/morning. The next bit I am dreading. I, gently as possible, try and raise my head. Ten Concordes instantly tune up for take off in my brain simultaneously. I take one look at a positively gloating Hector and try to wake Colin up by stabbing him with my toenails in hope that he will feed the dogs. One look from Colin gets me instantly out of bed, hangover or not. Even my big Chopsy boy Beau's usual adoring look has been replaced with that big black eyed "how could you" stare . I just about avoid falling into the dog feed bins and have to slide down the wall vertically to place their bowls on the floor as my brain would of definitely collapsed if I had of tried to bend over to do it
Three hours later and I still feel like a relic that should of been discovered in the Valley of the Kings instead of existing in the twentieth centaury.. It then occurs to me that I will have to walk to get my van, which has been left at Joanne's due to my drunken state last night. Not even the bribe of Naomi Campbell for his birthday is getting Colin to move on this one and he IS NOT getting it (the van) for me. What is worse, I have to take Hector instead of Beau as the walk is rather a long one and Hector needs the only exercise he is likely to get today due to my current physical condition. The sight of Hector waiting at the door like a thoroughbred straining in the starting stalls fills me with absolute despair. I don't want to even admit that today exists let alone walk my bloody dog. In fact, I would not object to walking A dog, I just don't want to walk my dog as I just know, due to that look in his eye, that he is fully aware that today liberties can be taken with Mummy.
I kit myself up with an extra bottle of water for dehydration, headache tablets which are self explanatory, mobile phone in case I can't remember my way/who I am etc and sunglasses as I feel like Dracula. With the seriousness of the task ahead I feel like Captain Scot and utter "I might be gone for some time" to a husband and elder dog that are both pulling a who cares type of face. I only reach the top of our estate before I realise that there is a very real possibility that Hector won't be the only one needing the poo bags on this walk. The only reason I don't turn back for those extra strong supermarket plastic bags I paid ten pence each for is that Hector is in fourth gear and isn't about to even consider an about turn.
I try to take heart that the roads, though long, are pretty straight to Joannes. I also try to look like I always walk like a lobotomised version of Boris Karloffs Frankenstein. Just as I wonder why Hector is pulling so hard he stops dead to raise a leg and I fall over him into the swinging sign offering God knows what (and who cares) outside of the garage. Hector turns his head just a fraction in my direction and gives me that Game On look. It is then I also realise that I have him just on his collar and not his head halter, hence I am at his mercy for the whole of this ride. I try "heel", "slowly", "please don't pull Hector", "bloody STOP it" (last one to the detriment of my head) with absolutely no effect. Guess the training classes were a waste of money then.
A third of a way there and I take refuge in the bus shelter for a sit down, drink, headache tablet and fag. I have to move on as Hector makes a kid scream on her new Christmas bike when he takes delight in nearly making her fall off with a bark through the Perspex covering. I am definitely not in the mood for rampaging parents today. My head is just settling down to a bongo drum beat of pain instead of Concorde when I am launched into orbit by some stupid prat who decides to beep their car horn right behind me. This totally destroys my already fragile deportment and I trip over my feet and fall spread eagle on the pavement. I scare Hector by doing this and he drags me face first down in the grit a few paces further before my weight brings him to a halt. I just manage to get to my knees before Hector launches himself towards the car that has hooted and has now stopped. Again I am depostied prone and eating dirt. I make no attempt at retaining any dignity and leave the imbedded tarmac bits up my nose and in my mouth. It is only one of my dog walking friends who has spied me and Hector and is wondering what I am doing walking so far from home. He has stopped to offer me a lift. I think he has second ideas when his hoot produces mine and Hector's reaction. My reaction is to go arse up but Hectors is to try and get into his car via the open window as he has been dying to get into close contact with Sally for ages and I am not sure his intentions are entirely honourable. To save the poor bloke from doing a Starskey and Hutch slide over his bonnet to burn rubber and make good his escape, I kindly decline as I am "enjoying my walk". Guess that is one New Years Resolution broken already then.
I sit down on the wall and wish I would of included plasters amongst the water and other stuff I have brought along as my knee is bleeding. Hector is standing front paws first on the little wall besides me. Hector then jumps over the wall and sends Mummy head first, but backwards, to follow him as he reaches the end of his lead. Bastard, I AM going to kill him this time. I start to cry as that really hurt and my arm is hurting so much along with my head and whole body that I really don't think I can do this. I then realise I have an audience. I have four huge brown eyes and two slimy noses about a foot from my face. A beautiful head is lowered towards me and this big pink rasp of a tongue is extended my way. At least someone loves me enough to try and kiss it better today as my dogs and husband clearly don't care. In an instance this one action by a beautiful Jersey Cow brings a smile to my face and an evil glint to my eye as Hector is trying to hide behind the hedge as the only time he see cows is when they are trying to squash him. At least I am not the only one with the shakes now.
This small but touching display by said cow gets me to my feet. I haven't got that far to go really and even Hector must be getting tired by now, hence the pulling and peeing must both start to decline in intensity I am right as he stops pulling me up the hill. Am a bit disappointed that he has chosen this moment to stop pulling as my thigh muscles remind me that alcohol isn't the best form of fuel for the body. Decide that my dog was just being a sod and had taken into account the slight hill as he was just preserving his energy by not pulling my weight up it. Reaches the top and goes into fourth gear again. Am just deciding whether to stop and give Hector a drink of water - like over the head and still in the bottle - when he stops and deposits what he considers saving the best till last, right in front of me. I view this with all the horror of watching a live human birth on TV. My God, a two handed carrier size dump is just what I needed him to do now. Immediately my already spatially challenged stomach rebels and the knees take another bashing whilst I sink to them and deposit last nights "nibbles" into a rather disgusted looking horses field.
It took me over two hours to walk approximately two miles that day. Hector enjoyed every second and yard of torture he inflicted on me. It ended with me falling through Joannes conservatory door whilst Hector did a lap of "It nearly killed her getting me here" victory. Little did he know just how close he came to me murdering him when he deposited his "opinion" of the day and made me sick.
Since then, I have solemnly sworn never ever to go dog walking with a hangover again.
My dog is incorrigible. My family, my friends, my vet and my trainers have already expressed this opinion and I think it is about time I accepted it. Lets face it, at the age of four, what you see is what you get with Hector (hopefully). Perhaps I should do something about him though as this week one poor man was grabbing for Hector’s balls whilst trying to protect his balls in case Hector got the wrong balls. Let me explain ..........
We have a nudist on our favourite beach and no it is not my favourite beach due to that fact. He has been popping up intermittently on Portelet beach for a couple of months now. All I can say is that he must have a very strong constitution, because if the less than summer like weather won’t kill him then the fathers on the beach with their families will! I’m no prude, but there again, Mr Nudist is no Adonis and it IS as described, a family beach. Even my normally very open minded husband emitted a Victor Meldrew type utterance upon view of him last week. Somehow, after Hector’s performance today, I don’t think he will be back in a hurry though.
Hector loves the beach. Swimming, digging, rock pool scrumaging and playing ball with any takers is what life should be all about according to my young Weimaraner. The only problem I have with him is actually getting him off of the beach and back home. Spectators are normally treated to the sight of my dog throwing himself down on the sand, screaming like he is being killed and doing a pretty good impression of a crocodile when rolling to kill something. Think of a two year old child having a tantrum and you get a pretty good impression of what it is like trying to get Hector up the stairs and to the van. One of these days I am going to get clobbered by someone who thinks I am mistreating him (am usually tempted by this stage). I’ve even had to resort to buying him an ice-cream to get him up off the ground and home.
Hence, I knew today’s routine of trying to get Hector off the beach was going to be no different. If anything it was going to be made even harder by the fact I was going to have to do my best to circle round Mr Nudist without diverting my eyes and keeping Hector away from him. I succeeded on the former and failed miserably on the latter. Some days I’d rather face the threat of nuclear holocaust then what Hector throws at me. Hector’s ball was duly gathered up by me and put in my pocket out of his reach. This way I had a slightly better chance of keeping him to heel in his mistaken hope that mummy was only joking and was going to give him his ball back.
I wasn’t the only one taking evasive action as I greeted a couple that had previously been obliging Hector with his ball playing. The three of us stopped to air our views about the inappropriate behaviour of Mr Nudist, when I decided to adjust my footing slightly. When discussing matters as strait faced as bare flesh, one has to have a certain air of authority about them and the correct posture is conductive to this. Split second later I am on my face. Might as well had one of those big Lottery fingers pointing over my head saying watch this as the seaweed on the stones was as slippery as hell. A further split second later Hector is thwarting my attempts at getting up by jumping on my back thinking this game is better than ball throwing anyway. At least I like to think that is what was going through his mind and not that it was spiteful retaliation for me with holding his ball. Never can be sure with a Weim. The couple were just giving looks that intimated that a woman being suffocated by her mad dog, would be a better dinner story then that of a nudist on the beach, when his confiscated ball plops out of my pocket. Beelzebub takes one look, counts his chickens and is off. He sure is hell not hanging round the very person that took it away from him in the first place.
As is a normal occurrence when out with my dog, I am helped to my feet by strangers. I am just wondering if sand really does make a good facial scrub when the woman firmly takes hold of my arm and says “look where he is going”. Oh crap, would rather Hector was trekking up the mist laden hills of Rwanda in search of Lowland Gorillas then where he is heading. Imagination v’s reality aside, he is still going to come face to face with something hairy and naked. Hector stops dead in front of Mr Nudist and drops his ball. He is ignored. He then does that “play with me NOW” double front paw stamp, with ears flapping. Mr Nudist then decides to play ball. Never thought there was anybody thicker than me alive. Can die happy knowing that there is now. Within minutes everyone present on the beach is looking at Nr Nudist doing the Floral Dance with a grey dog. Hector is over the moon. This man wants to play, doesn’t matter to him he has got no clothes on. Hector is chucking his ball up and catching it in mid air with snapping jaws all whilst trying to jump all over Mr Nudist in agreement of what a brilliant game this beach lark is. Mr Nudist, however, is just trying to preserve his manhood (think even he realised preserving any dignity was no longer an option) as first described at the beginning of this Tail.
I will admit there was a certain element of you deserved that in my delay in trying to recall Hector. Wasn’t all that keen anyway as even I have limits and one of them is trying to grab evasive objects (Hector and his ball) around naked men. The lady did kindly tell her husband to go and get Hector to spare me my blushes. He obviously had limits to. Taking care to moderate my language, I recalled Hector in my own unique way. Took a while though. I had the uncomfortable feeling that Hector only came back because Mr Nudist wasn’t that much fun hiding behind a rock now.
This time, instead of being stared at in my efforts of getting an objecting Hector off the beach, I thought I was going to be applauded. It was not the first time Mr Nudist has seen me and Hector on this beach, but I think it will definitely be the last. It will not be us that won’t be coming back either.
As a note to this Tail. It is not illegal for one to sunbathe nude on Jersey beaches, so long as you are causing no offence to the rest of the general public. It has to be asked why this man chose such a popular beach to indulge in his past time. The police have already been down to this beach about this man. Not that I could help them in describing his face! I know everyone has the right to walk/sunbathe/tango unmolested by people and their uncontrollable dogs. One of those occasions Hector went where Angels dare to tread. I think the general public were grateful to Hector on this occasion.