Saga of a woman old enough to know better who lets her life be governed by the ridiculous hobby of breeding and showing dogs, musing on life, the twenty first century, Cameron and his mini-me, and the occasional sheep.

Thursday, July 26, 2007


It happens once a year. The Dire Show. The one you try to forget. The one where you feel there should have been a premonition when you posted the entries.....

I had a taste of what was in store when after my sleepless horrid night on the WhiteBus, Shelby managed an escape at dawn when being unloaded and ran through the soaking long grass in excited circles pursued by a lot of people with creaky joints who hadn`t slept so well either. Shelby was well rested, thank you, and managed an amazing turn of speed, with an excited grin all over his big flat face. He was eventually headed off and decided to surrender, leaving me to pack up the trolley and haul the rest across the endless sea of mud to find the indoor rings. Shelby`s of course, was about three miles from the Papillon one....

The judging was best forgotten. I sloshed back from the Chin ring to rush Marcus in and take a 3rd. Florian the Climbing Dog was next, and for once was performing well....until I got him on the table. His mouth was duly opened - and a tooth was missing ! I stared. I had cleaned those teeth the night before and they had all stood present and correct. What had he been up to during the Long Night of the Bus? Had he pulled it out himself to avoid further shows? (He would much rather be up a tree). A friend suggested that it was probably in his travelling box - "you could go and get it and show it to the judge."

It could have been worse. Many years ago I was showing Celeste in veteran under a foreign judge and when her mouth was opened a tooth tinkled out on to the table. The judge inspected it solemnly. "Oh look - she has lost the tooth." I could only agree - there were few optional answers to this. "No, you are hallucinating" clearly wasn`t going to pass muster, let alone "Hold on and I`ll stick it back in"...

There was an unhappy atmosphere around the ring. Some of it had to do with mud, more of it with bad stewarding. The bright yellow book entitled "Stewarding For Dummies" was conspicuously absent from the table. Present dogs were marked absent, dogs left at home were placed, and bitches did really well in classes for males. Meanwhile proceedings were held up by many many dogs, denied exercise due to the mud, insisting on stopping traffic for a much-needed Brad Pitt right there in the ring.

Tempers flared. One exhibitor was vowing revenge after another remarked that her exhibit had all the animation and attractive qualities of roadkill. Small dogs were inadvertently stepped on by wellies caked a foot deep in mud. Toilets were only accessible by boat. It was a relief to head back to the bus for the long haul up the road. The experience was completed by a run in with an abusive taxi driver.

Never again.

Until the next time....
Oh, I like it. I needed a laugh this morning.
Sounds really sexy!! So what is it that keeps you going back show after show?? What happened to the tooth??
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