20 September 2015 Sunday) - Hawkinge, Vets
As is so often the way, after an ale or two I didn't sleep well last night. I was up and eating cornflakes whilst watching "South Park" at 3am in an attempt to settle my wayward stomach.
It settled (after a fashion); I went back to bed. However my sleep was marred by vivid dreams in which I had been called into work because I had recently been to London for a day's parasitology course (which I had) and my wisdom was required. In my slumbers an associate had gone bright yellow having contracted the rather rare strain of "bastard malaria".
I finally gave up with the idea of sleep shortly after 7am and watched "Toddlers and Tiaras" over toast and coffee. That settled my stomach far more than cornflakes ever did.
As I was prepping "Hannah" for the day I had a message. Yesterday we spent the evening at a geo-camping event. Nick's phone had been charging in the car as we sat chatting. This morning - disaster. Nick's keys had gone missing. "er indoors TM" had a look in the car as I prepared to drive back out to Yalding to deliver them, but they weren't in our car.
For all that we breathed a sigh of relief I can't help but wonder where the errant keys went.
"Furry Face TM" seemed rather subdued this morning; only nibbling at his breakfast. Usually when he sees me getting backpack and walking boots together he gooes mental, but not today. Perhaps he was worn out with yesterday's excitement. But subdued dogs notwitstanding we got ourselves together and set off to the south coast.
We had plans to walk three shorter geo-serieses today, and so we drove out to Hawkinge to start the "Up on the Downs" series. Billed as a walk of two and a half miles the plan was to do this and another series before lunch, and then move on to Samphire Hoe for the afternoon.
We started our walk with a little diversion into Hawkinge itself, and then went on to the country lanes. We saw rabits and pheasants and fox poo. The walk was rather scenic; I took a few photos whilst we were there. But as for a geocaching walk.... I don't want to be negative, it wasn't a bad walk. In fact looking back it was actually a rather good one. And in his defence the chap who'd put the series out did say he'd never had much to do with the outdoors and that he was new to hiding tupperware... but...
I had a couple of trivial issues with the series. Personally I would have put more caches along the route; I would have had more caches at places where you change directions and footpaths just to make that change more obvious. And I would question the published distance. Billed as two and a half miles, three GPS units measured it at a shade under four miles.
However I would say that the first geocache could have been worked differently. The puzzle was was overly complicated and the final co-ordinates were some two miles away and weren't actually on the walk. The final location involved a little detour from the circuit of about half a mile. I would have done it differently.
But I'm probably just being picky here. The chap who'd put the caches out had obviously put a lot of time and effort into providing me with a walk around places I've never been before, and for all that I might whinge, I am very grateful for his efforts.
As we walked we noticed a little blood on Suzy-pup's side. We stopped and looked closer. There was a gash in her side about an inch long. So rather than carrying on into Alkham we abandoned our plans for the rest of the day and drove to the vets in Folkestone. In addition to the gash the vet found two puncture wounds. We are pretty sure she ripped her side on barbed wire; either when chasing pheasants, or when falling out of a tree (it's a dog thing).
The poor pup didn't seem overly bothered but had we carried on she would have got the wound infected. The vet closed the gash with three staples and put a "bucket of shame" over Suzy-pup's head and ordered rest, so we cut the day short and came home.
Once home "er indoors TM" drove "My Boy TM" up to the hospital. Cheryl's back had been getting more and more painful. She is booked for surgery for a slipped disc, and having been to the Accident & Emergency department she'd been told she could have the surgery today.
After a few hours of waiting around she was told things weren't as urgent as they seemed and she was back on the waiting list and sent home again.
And with "er indoors TM" off bowling I was left "home alone" with my dog. He seemed really quiet, and as I did the ironing I had to turn the telly up over the sound of his snoring.
He's laying asleep next to me now; he sees absolutely knackered. He has got an appointment with the vet himself tomorrow. I shall ask them if I'm fussing about him unduly...