They packed and packed and packed. I watched and watched and watched. Then Daddy said the
magic words: „Are you coming along?“
Is the Pope Catholic?
This was weird: I was handed into my crate facing sideways in Daddy’s car (instead of facing the back in my own car), where I stayed silently for 7 hours with four piddle stops ( I piddle at
once on command.) before we arrived at my first hotel ever. With Google Earth,
Daddy had found fields within 10 minutes‘ walk of the hotel where I could run
off-leash. People speak French here; Mummy can barely get by, Daddy does a lot
better. I understand everything. I did my jobs on command and gobbled my meal
down from a new folding bowl. Never say I’m not flexible!
The second evening they carried all my stuff into a renovated old stone house with a
fenced-in yard. Oh, so we’re going to live here now?
I settled right in. Mummy
was glad she only had to open the kitchen door to the yard so I could do my
business. I was glad Daddy had found paths again right behind our house, where
I could run off-leash after our sightseeing excursions.
Good thing we had practised city walking for the Begleithundeprüfung (last chapter). We went
to a market at least every second day and I walked comfortably between Mummy
and Daddy, even when it was really crowded. They bought all kinds of veggies,
fruits, cheeses, sausage, pastries, bread, you name it! But nothing for a
doggie. They made up for it by making sure I got to go to a beach and run with
the waves. These were my first experiences with the sea and I loved it! I was
careful not to let the big waves catch me; however, I got a bit bolder with
them as they ran up the beach. Mummy lost my aquatoy before I even got to try
it out in the sea but I found branches to tote around and Daddy threw a pine
cone for me to chase. I found a friend named Satie to play with one day. The
first two times they put Gráinne’s life jacket on me, but when they were sure I
wouldn’t go in too deep, I could run without it. It didn’t matter to me.
we did sections of a cliff walk. I had
to stay on the leash there, partly by decree of the authorities, but Mummy
wouldn’t have risked my falling over the cliffs anyway.
we drove to cities or small towns for sightseeing. I showed everybody how a
Begleithund walks politely. They took turns waiting outside with me and going
into churches, cemeteries in Normandy or
a museum. A great many people stopped to ask my breed and to say what a pretty and well-behaved kid I was, lying patiently in my frog position.
One day we were in a city and there was no grass. In front of the cathedral there were
some plants waiting to be put in the garden beside the church. I took advantage
of the situation and lifted my butt over one to water it. Later in a smaller
town we walked down to the harbor. All concrete. So on the way back to the car I squatted over a sewer grate and
tinkled. Mummy and Daddy burst out laughing. Wrong? „It’s fine, Róisín,“ they
assured me. „Good, clever girl.“ They thought it might be a coincidence, but
the next day I did it again in Bayeux.
I have good manners.
On this first
vacation with Mummy and Daddy I won Daddy’s praise: Best Dog Traveller in the World.