This weekend was a waste of make-up

For those of you bored with hearing about my Asbo dogs I thought I would bore you with a post about my weekend.

As the title might suggest it didn't go exactly as planned, it wasn't bad just not as I expected.  This weekend a girl I used to work with and was really good friends with was planning to visit Edinburgh.  We have had some ups and downs but I doubt she has noticed.  She is a very confident but self centered person.  She doesn't seem to get upset by anything and doesn't understand when other people get hurt or annoyed by things she says or does.  We were really good friends for almost a year and used to go out together all the time.  Her boyfriend was away doing a year in the US then, I knew when he came back I would see less of her but in actually fact I saw nothing of her.  She never once called to invite me out once he was back.  If I asked her she would say she was busy with her boyfriend.  We would sometimes end up in the same places and she would chat and want me to dance but I was never invited along.  Not long after he got back I was off work for nine weeks with depression.  She never phoned or even sent a text to see how I was.  So I stopped really counting her as a friend.  Later I would go out with her occasionally if it suited me but didn't worry if she was sitting in on her own.

So she was visiting Edinburgh, she said she couldn't wait to see me and that we would go out on Friday night.  So I dashed home from Asbo rehabilitation to find that Mr Midnite was heading out to an African fund raising event where he'd been asked to play the jembe.  I decided I go with him so I'd be in the city centre when my friend arrived.  Sent a text asking if she was in Edinburgh, she was and said she would text me once she knew where she was going. 

Quick change, favourite dress, bit of cleavage, cute shoes, make-up and hair done in 20 minutes and off we go.  I have to say I was well overdressed for the African fund raiser but I did quite enjoy it.  There was a fantastic group from Zimbabwe playing African instruments, singing and dancing, they were so alive and their enthusiasm was infectious.  After that there was some reading of African poetry by a writer I hadn't heard of, Charles Mungoshi.  I really enjoyed the reading so I've found a couple of short poems to share:

In the wilderness

The torrid silence of the October sun.
Miles upon miles and miles of burnt-out plains.

Suddenly you realise
you are talking loudly to your

He ran away from home
where, he thought, all pain
He went to another country
Where he discovered
the pain of leaving home.

After the reading there was a singer with Mr Midnite playing drums, she asked us to join in but not a chance when it was in Shona.

Left there about 11 no call or text so I headed home with Mr Midnite which was probably more fun anyway.

Saturday I went off to my yoga class with only a tiny bit of foundation on, that was a waste too because it slid off my face during the sun salutation!  The yoga class included a try at doing the king posture, the headstand.  I couldn't do a headstand when I was a kid and unsurprisingly I still can't.  I gave it my best effort and surprised myself by managing to get the top of my back against the wall.  I think the law of gravity dictates that my head should never be asked to support the weight of my ass.  Allegedly you should take the weight in your arms, I need stronger arms.

A call came from my friend, apologies etc.  And a plan to go out around 8 in the evening, she would text me the details.  So at about 7 I get ready, new shoes, cute sandal things, short dress over trousers, hair done, make up on and cute handbag selected.  So I wait for the text, and wait, and wait.  9.45 I take the furry girls out and one of my neighbours is out smoking and we get talking.  He invites me in because they have a few friends in and are having some wine.  There I am once again extremely over dressed for the occasion.  I had a good night catching up on local gossip which includes my asbo dogs.  When I can home I found that my friend had actually called at 11.49, almost 4 hours late.  Needless to say I haven't bothered calling back.

Today has been a lazy one, catching up with my blog reading while cleaning my house, shopping etc.  No make-up required.  Back to dog school and work tomorrow.

Police called for Asbo Doggies

Thank you for all your comments on the last Asbo Dog post, it is causing me quite a lot of stress and reading your views is helping me laugh at the situation and see that maybe the authorities will be reasonable about my side of things. 

Today we had the community policeman at our door.  I told him I've had them on the leads for the last week and explained that the kid is irrationally frightened just by the dogs being here.  He was OK about it all and just asked me to keep them on leads.  After he'd gone I thought of lots of questions, typical!  I called the police communications centre and confirmed that its OK to let them off their leads at training classes and away from this child.  I said I didn't want to get into trouble if I have them off the leads at the beach or elsewhere and this family happen to see me.  That would be unlikely but you never know. 

Anyway I was going to tell you about the training classes:

Week one of the intensive asbo dog rehabilitation is over. The 5am starts have been challenging. You may have noticed a reduction in my blogger activity, that's because even though I'm going to bed earlier I am a bit tired.

The good news is that the furry demons have been trying really hard at dog school. They don't really like Marco the Mexican trainer very much at the moment because he is mean.

I used to take the girls to puppy classes but was only allowed to take them one at a time. The class was always really crowded with 40 plus dogs in a Scout Hall. Individual attention was obviously limited and with a small cute dog I suspect I was low priority compared to showing someone how to control their giant beast. I could always get both dogs to do everything in puppy class but away from there it wasn't so easy.

With the new classes I get four one to one sessions outside with both dogs. As Marco says dealing with two dogs together is my reality so there is no point training them individually and then not knowing how to deal with them together. There are also group classes but with work I can only make one a week.

Because we are outside there is unlimited space for walking to heel instead of being stuck in a line between other dogs. We mastered two dogs walking to heel in the first session, a major victory for me. Session two we mastered stay and walk away, Sasha could do this but Star wasn't keen so it took a bit of effort. Now I can leave her for minutes and she hardly moves. I can sit them both separately or together and leave them and most of the time they don't move until I say so.

Day three we instantly mastered down with Sasha because she could do it already. Star is really resistant to this but I think we will get there soon. They both got the idea of them staying while I keep moving really quickly. Sasha them moved on to a new game. I tell her to sit and stay them leave her. When I get to where I want to be I call her but once she starts moving I stop her with a Stay/Sit command, clever little Sasha got it on the second go. Marco said he has had dogs that took months to get this.

Day four, lots of down, Star still doesn't like it! She is like a pop-up dog, you put her in the down position as soon as you leave go she pops up to sitting. She did catch up with Sasha by mastering the Here - Stay/Sit idea.

Bear in mind that it was only last Sunday that these dogs were totally out of control !!!!!

If anyone has seen the Dog Whisperer TV show they will know that it's all about establishing yourself as leader of the pack. Macro seems to follow similar ideas to the dog whisperer. It's really surprising how quickly I can see a difference.

Next weeks classes are at 6.30 instead of 6 so I might be awake enough to blog a bit more.

Here's a snap of the girls out causing trouble :0) 

Asbo Cavaliers

For those that don't know here in the UK if you are really naughty but not quite a criminal you can get an ASBO - Anti Social Behaviour Order.  The wealth of knowledge that is Wikipedia gives the following information:

"An Anti-Social Behaviour Order or ASBO is a civil order made against a person who has been shown, on the balance of evidence, to have engaged in anti-social behaviour. The orders were designed to be imposed after minor incidents that would not ordinarily warrant prosecution. The orders restrict behaviour in some way, by prohibiting a return to a certain area or shop, or by restricting public behaviour such as swearing or drinking. In the UK, there has been criticism that an ASBO is sometimes viewed as a badge of honour by youth. Many see the ASBO as connected with young delinquents."

Well recently doggie ASBOs have been introduced - See here

Follows will remembers that my evil demon dogs have been terrorising the local children.  You remember the evil doggies:

Well following last weeks excitement we had a further doggie incident.  Having kept the little monsters on their leads all week and walked them away from the house as much as possible I thought it would all blow over.  Not likely.  On Sunday scared boy was playing outside my house.  Clearly I have to take the dogs out so every time I took them out he ran away down the street.  My neighbours invited me to join them outside but I couldn't because of the dogs so we went out in the car instead.

Later in the day I took the dogs out and scared boy wasn't there.  My neighbours grandsons were there and wanted to play with the dogs.  The youngest (about 2 to 3?) wanted to take Sasha for a walk on her lead so off they went up and down the path because he isn't allowed past the end of the buildings.  Yes, I let a 3 year old walk my scary dog!  The others children were picking Star up and cuddling her (lucky she didn't go savage and tear their wee faces off)  so I took her lead off so I could go with Sasha in case she pulled the toddler type child.

Of course you see where this is going, scared child turns up on his bike, sees the dogs and peddles away at high speed.  Star takes off after the bike running a long way behind him for about 20 metres before she got bored and went to see one of the other neighbours.

I came back in the house and there was a knock on the door.  Scared boys mother telling me that my dogs are out of control.  The children had followed her upstairs and were listening.  She said that my dogs had terrified her son and he had cycled so fast into the block entrance that he has broken the door, she is going to tell the council and they will bill me because its my fault.  Not sure thats going to happen?

She then said those dogs are huge to a child.  The 3 year old behind her said "no they're not, they're tiny".  I had to bite my cheeks not to laugh.  I told her I would keep them on their leads but pointed out that he still runs away when they are on their leads.  She wasn't really happy with that and said if I'm not going to do anything she would get an anti-social behaviour order.  I'm not really sure what she hopes to achieve by that?  The children behind her were saying that they like playing with the dogs and that the dogs are nice.  She said her son doesn't think so, the children's response, "well he's stupid".  More cheek biting.

So now I'm waiting to receive some sort of letter from the council about my anti social behaviour for not controlling my dogs. 

I did call the council to ask what I should do.  They asked the following questions:
Are your dogs aggressive?  No, possibly the most submissive dogs ever.
Have they ever bitten this boy? No.
Have they ever bitten anyone? No
Do they growl at children? No
Have they knocked anyone over or caused damage to property? No and just mine.

Someone from the anti social behaviour department is going to call me back to discuss the situation.  I would quite like them to come out and meet my out of control scary dogs.  I suspect there would be some laughter.

Anyway, because I won't take any risks with my sweet, furry, demon dogs I have enrolled them in new intensive doggie training.  My logic is that if this family starts screaming about out of control dogs I need to make sure there are no opportunities for them to get evidence.  My dogs are pretty good but are excitable and do sometimes go deaf.  I spoke to a guy who does intensive 1to1 and group training and he squeezed us in by starting earlier than normal.  We are going to classes at 6am Monday to Thursday with a group class on a Friday night.  He agrees with my theory that if my dogs are really well trained then I can't be open to criticism.  Plus he thinks that Star needs to gain confidence when out because she is very nervous.   Two days in and we have improved walking to heel and Star has mastered stay (as in sitting where I put her for 5 minutes not 1 second) so I guess it's worth the massive amount of cash.  The 5am alarm is not pleasant though.

I must really love my dogs.

Fizzie seal of approval

I got an award, isn't it nice:

It is a Fizzie Seal of Approval, you can check out Fizzie Rascal's blog here.  I suspect he is slightly tattoo encrusted but we love him anyway :0)  check out his blog if you don't already.  Plus he recommended some other blogs so check them out too and see if there is anything there that paints your donkey blue.

Thank you Mr Rascal :0)

PS sure I'll love your tattoos!

The Asbo Fairy Tales

One of the festival shows I fancied was The Asbo Fairy Tales. This was a young theatre group who had re-written classic fairy tales for modern times. They had really really clever ideas, the acting was pretty good but the delivery might have been better if they were a bit more experienced.

Actually my favourite bit was the fairy who came on between tales to do the introductions.  She starts as a nice little fairy with wings, a tutu and a sparkly wand dancing across the stage and stopping a graffiti artist.  Next she is outside a club watching girls come out but the temptation of 2-4-1 cocktails is too much.  Third break she is a very drunk fairy falling out of the club and vomiting in the street then getting picked up by a dodgy looking guy.   Next she is a teenage pregnant fairy have problems dancing with her bump.  Later she is pushing a pram and getting upset when her baby daddy is chatting up other girls.  Final scene a worn looking fairy, pregnant again beats up a new fresh fairy to regain her stage.  No dialogue but really well acted it was very clever.

The Lambton Worm

Something a bit different, this is an old song from the North East of England.  Trust me when I say they are singing in English.  The language is Geordie but the setting is around the River Wear which isn't really in Geordie Land, its more Sunderland.  Anyway hope you like a taste of the North East:

Festival Frolics and the parents

The annual invasion of Edinburgh is now well underway. Every August the population of Edinburgh doubles and every spare room, sofa bed and bit of floor is filled with entertainers and tourists. If you go away in August you can pay for your months holiday by renting your home out for bags of cash.

The festival is actually a number of festivals rolled into one, there is the actual Edinburgh International Festival with "the very best in international opera, music, drama and dance". Lovely but much less exciting than the other festivals that run along side. We have the Edinburgh Book Festival ("the largest public celebration of books in the world.") and the Edinburgh festival fringe (widely acknowledged to be the biggest arts festival in the world). Its all very exciting with the main problem how to decide what to go and see.

Every year I have my own personal invasion when my parents visit to do the festival. The length of this visit has gradually stretched from a weekend to its current length of 6 days. It's nice to see them and do some festival things but it puts me under a lot of pressure for a few reasons:

- I am assigned the task of selecting shows from the festival guides. "Find some good shows for us to see".
OK, the fringe guide contains details of thousands of shows all described as the best of the fest. I trawl through this trying to psychically decide which will actually fit my Dad's definition of good. That means comedy, he is a comedy channel addict and uses the festival as an extension of his home viewing, but how do you know which of the many many comedy shows will be a riot and which will be less than a titter?

- I have to find restaurants that serve great food for a low price in Edinburgh city centre during our busiest month.
My parents are fortunate that they have two really good pubs near them that do great food for reasonable prices. Everywhere I take them is either not as good as The BlueBell or too expensive. I hate this bit because I quite enjoy going to nice restaurants but can't take my parents to the places I go because they are too expensive so I end up in places I haven't been before hoping that they are better than average for the price they charge.

- I have to become an unofficial tour guide.
Questions like "What's that building?" "How long will it take to get there?" "Is there a place we can get coffee on the way?" "What are they doing?" And on, and on and on.

But, apart from the pressure to produce a top rate festival experience it is always a good week. This year was no exception although it did have some slightly dodgy moments. Like the show in a massive room with less than 20 people! No guilt here, my dad picked this one.

Onwards to the second night when I had picked Jo Caufield who was pretty funny. She is often on TV but her stand-up is far better than her appearances on quiz shows. Here's a quick Jo clip:

My personal favourites in the comedy shows were Danny Bhoy and Steven Caton. Steven taking about his families reaction to his decision to become a stand up comedian even though he has a degree in architecture. Very funny. Favourite part was his tale about the realisation that his doctor has him registered as a woman. What I can remember it went like this:

Who reads envelopes, even if you do you just assume the Mrs is a typo. So I get a letter from the doctor "Dear Mrs S Caton you are invited to a cervical screening, please attend the surgery at 9.30 on 6 August" Screening = movies, the doctors have invited me to watch a movie about pussy. Cool. So I arrive at the surgery and I'm so excited about seeing the movie that I don't notice the waiting room is full of women. I go to the reception and say "Hi, I'm Steven Caton and I'm here for the cervical screening". The receptionist says what? So, in the manner of the English, I say the same thing louder and slower in case the receptionist is deaf or stupid. "I'm Steven Caton and I am here for the cervical screening". By this time the receptionist is laughing and I turn around to see a room full of women wetting their knickers, laughing and pointing at me.

Funny? Well maybe you had to be there!

We had a miraculous zero arguments. Although the where are we going to eat debates were close. I knew my dad wanted to go to the pub so he could have a couple of pints with lunch but he wouldn't / couldn't just say. The conversation went:

Dad - "Where are we going next?"
Me - "Well it's starting to rain so we could just go and get a drink or some lunch?"
Mum - "I'm quite hungry"
Dad - "OK let's go for lunch where should we go?"
Me - "Well what do you fancy to eat, we can get anything around here"
Dad - "I don't mind, whatever you want."
Me - I live here, I can go anywhere here when ever I like. Is there anything you fancy, Chinese, Indian, mosque food (yum yum), fish and chips, anything?
Dad - "We'll just have whatever you want."
Me - "OK, there is a cafe just over the road they do great food, we'll go there."
Dad - "Ah, do you not fancy a drink."
Me - "no."
Dad - "Well if that's what you want, I just thought you might want to have a drink with lunch."
Me - "We can go to the pub if you want."
Dad - "No that's OK, we can just go to a cafe, I just thought you might want a drink".
Me - "Dad, if you want a drink we can go to the pub over there and have a bar meal."
Dad - "Well, if that's what you want to do we can go to the pub."

That's the edited version, I don't know if it's clear but I didn't really fancy going to a pub. I don't drink much and it would be a really rare experience for me to have wine of something with lunch. My dad just keeps the discussion going until he feels secure in the knowledge that he is doing what you want and it is definitely your choice. Deluded me thinks.
Anyway a successful visit to the festival.  Here is another clip to give you a taste, head to 4mins for the bagpipe bit:

I do have some other festival comments but I have muttered for long enough so will save some for later :0)

Little Miss Midnite and the spider

I am a great believer in karma so should I be surprised when karma gets me?

After yesterday's rant about the evil shouting dad karma decided to remind me what it is like to be frightened so that I can appreciate scared child's fear of dogs.

A giant spider has moved into my bathroom and seems to have decided to stay.  It isn't any ordinary spider, it is a giant.  It has brown and white stripy legs and a big fat dark body.  It is currently trotting up and down the door frame in a guard like formation.  I think it plans to prevent me from using the bathroom. 

I'm not totally freak out scared of spiders, or much else really, all my scary demons are on the inside.  That said I definitely don't like spiders especially ones that look as though they could eat a small dog.

So thanks karma for the reminder that everyone is scared of something.  I do have sympathy for the scared child, I do try to keep my dogs away from him while still letting them play with his friends.  I still don't think his dad had a reason to shout at me.

Lead and I will follow, or not

Just thought I would have a quick rant.

I have 2 dogs, I'm sure you have met them if you follow my blog.  They are cavalier king charles spaniels. Pretty much about the size of a cat, they are very friendly, overly so and this has caused me a problem.

Only dead fish go with the flow

I don't know where I heard this but it makes sense to me.  I constantly hear people saying they are just going with the flow.  I think it means just letting life take you where ever it wants without you particularly trying to direct anything.  I looked it up and google provided the following definitions:

To 'go with the flow' means to not have a particularly strong opinion on something, and thus follow the majority. Or to not attempt to exert a large amount of influence on the course of events.

Singles holidays

Not like singles websites are they?  You don't go away and they try to match you up with a holiday single of the appropriate sex and then wait for chemistry to happen?

I don't think they are but not sure.  Anyway I'm thinking of saving up and going away on holiday by myself.  Why I here you ask?  A popular lady gorilla like Mrs Midnite can surely find someone to go on a jolly with?

Banks a lot

Woo hoo, my remortgage is complete!

BUT my bank has added my mortgage to my Internet banking so every time I log on to check my current account balance, pay a bill etc etc I see how much I owe on my mortgage. 

Bit depressing don't you think!

Yoga ta love it.

You might remember I was looking for a yoga class.  Well I have now been yogaring for about a month and thought I would tell you about it.

I choose Hatha Yoga because it was on a weekend and the other weekend option was Ashtanga that sounded a bit energetic for me.  I've also gone along to two Yin yoga workshops and really like that.

Have to choose a vacuum cleaner :0)

Not having the greatest weekend here in Mrs Midnite's pad.  Mr Midnite is off somewhere for the weekend and I'm trying to save cash so having a quite weekend with a plan to clean in advance of the invasion next weekend.

So was happily (sarcasm, I think so) cleaning the kitchen when I went to fill the sink, no hot water.  Investigation showed the pilot light was out.  Searched for the instructions, found them, followed them and still no pilot light.  Read the entire manual to discover there is a reset switch in case the boiler over heats.  Pressed it and hey presto we have a pilot light.  I feel some sort of power here.  And Mrs Midnite said "let there be a pilot light" and a pilot light filled the boiler.

About me

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30 something female, GSOH, independent, unreliable, seeks sanity. Must like dogs and handbags!