I was in the North East of England, land of my childhood and teenage years. Plus it was my cousin's 18th birthday and I remember seeing her in hospital at a day old. While I was driving my ipod added the final ingredient by pulling out some old tunes that sent my mind off on a trip down memory lane.
As I drove along singing (some would say howling but I'm going with singing) little flashes of life jumped out a me:
I'm busy, busy, busy and struggling to get through all my work. I've been busy since April and have mentioned it to my boss at each meeting but still the work keeps coming. I have my clients and when they bring new work its mine regardless of how busy I am. This isn't great but it would be OK if on top of that they didn't keep giving me more stuff.
We have a stupid workload tracking system, whenever I drop below 100% I say I can take something new. I sad this in April and got 5 new projects ............... 5, I asked for 1.
There are people at work who have sat at between 50 and 75% capacity for months and they got no new projects.
How is that fair!
On top of that I have been asked to pick up extra stuff over the last few weeks. I have an issue saying no and they know it. One of the bosses, not my line manager uses this to manipulate me, I know she is doing it. She asked me to fit some training in this week and I really couldn't. She made a comment about having to tell the big bosses that it won't be done and hit my guilt gland, before I know it I was agreeing to do the training. Kicking myself for not standing my ground now. That said I could kick her for using my weakness against me ........ bitch!
I've told them before that if I get too stressed for long periods it makes me manic, I get major insomnia and eventually I crash into depression. I've asked them to listen to me when I say I'm busy / stressed because I don't want to get ill again. It is in their interests too because if I got really bad I could end up off sick. I don't want a light workload, I'll do my share and probably a bit more but when I say "too much" they should listen. Last time we went round this cycle I went to HR and the company Doctor to get the department to listen. Lasted about 8 months now we are going round again.
I have done everything I can to deal with my "mental health issues". I try really hard to stop it from running my life. I take drugs everyday and they help me a lot but they are not miracles, you can push me past their ability to help. I know all the signs of me getting towards either manic or really depressed. It took a lot of time and hundreds of pounds in therapy to get so I can cope. I have had to change my lifestyle in quite a few ways to focus on balance and calm. I have to avoid over doing anything but I equally have to avoid falling into a pattern of doing nothing.
Why would I invest all this time, money and for want of a better description soul searching to throw it all away. I think work had an obligation to listen to me, I have been honest with them. I work hard and I am really, really good at my job. What is the problem with just accepting that I've said I'm busy so they shouldn't give me anything else for a few weeks. Is that a lot to ask?
I sat in my car this morning and just didn't want to go in. I finally went in at 9.12, twelve minutes late even though I was in the car park early. I sat at my desk and looked at my list, unanswered e-mails etc and the thought "I can't do this" sprang into my head. Luckily I have an on call therapist, I phone Mr Midnite and chatted to him for a while.
He is pretty much the most chilled out person I have met. He does get stressed but he kind of puts it away if he can't do anything and stops worrying. Mr Midnite is big into The Secret and the whole positive thinking and energy thing. He sort of does it naturally, he is generally a really positive, energetic person. He is also kind of calm in a energetic way, he moves about a lot but it isn't a stress thing he just dances and drums and keeps moving.
So after a quick therapy session I faced my pile of work head on with the thought. I can do this, I'm good at this. I'll prioritise and do the important stuff the rest can wait.
Ohh and I booked next week off, will this help my workload? No, but it will help meand guess who is most important? YES that's right, I am. It'll all be there when I get back but I hope to be a calmer happier person who can deal with it and most importantly say NO to anything new.
No, just say NO!
So apart from the fact that I have to drag myself and the girls over 100 miles to go to a party in a bar I have managed to avoid entering for almost 35 years I now hear it is fancy dress. Woo hoo - not.
Fancy dress is for parties with friends preferably house parties. Not family parties! Can't imagine my gran and dad getting dressed up. I think there will be a bunch of 18 year olds in fancy dress at one end of the room and a crowd of family in normal clothes at the other. I will be in the toilets taking off my costume cos trying to mix with the 18 year olds may make me look like I'm trying too hard.
I've done fancy dress, I was a cat once, best party ever ever ever. I was a cool cat, couldn't actually do much with my nail claws but looked good. I've been the Munro woman - ooh boo be do, did a good Star Trek party once with facial enhancements to make me Bjoran. All good fun involving quite a lot of alcohol. If there was a fancy dress party involving a group of my friends I would put in loads of effort and planning and have a great time. It's not so much the fancy dress as the family party / fancy dress combo.
Plus the short notice, not sure I can come up with a costume between now and Saturday while I'm at work and just before payday. Therefore the choices of available costume are Gorilla, M&M, clown or Roman.
One of the exhibitors was a psychic, we went along to a workshop just to see what she was like. She wanted someone to let her touch and look at their handbag to see what she could tell about them. So I volunteered, must have been feeling brave.
I am interested in the idea of psychic powers and like to give it a try and see what they say. My Dad seems to attract gypsies etc who just approach him and tell him things, for no money! I don't get that, I have to seek them out!
So up I hopped with handbag in hand and this is what she came up with:
4) Strange I'm also seeing eyes, have you recently been to the optician? MrsM thought, yes, yesterday. See my blog about it - link
5) Are you involved with some sort of alternative therapy like Rekki or Yoga? MrsM thought, I have just signed up for yoga classes (blogged about that too - link) at a place that does all sorts of alternative stuff. I've been thinking about it in my aim to stay calm.
So dear blog followers, tell me do you think these 6 things were wild stabs in the dark that are so general they could apply to anyone? Do you think she is just a very observant person and perhaps things about me gave her clues? Or do you think she truly has a power?
Interested to know what you think.
Better late than never I am proud to accept this award. I have been awarded the same award by a couple of people. It is "A Blog With Substance" award. Thank you, thank you, it feels so good to have substance.
So on to the award games:
Thank you to Dan, Mikey and Scrappy.
My blog: Global therapy for the Soul
10 worthy blogs:
Today I had an opticians appointment with the aim of getting some glasses I will actually wear in public. I have contact lenses but the optician suggested taking occasional breaks, so the buying glasses appointment was arranged. I arrived 20 minutes before my appointment with Mr Midnite in tow for the all important second opinion. Managed to try on a couple of pairs that I had pre-selected last week. Just as we were reaching the conclusion that the black frames were a bit harsh and eliminating them from the short list a optician employee approached:
"I have an appointment but I'm just picking some glasses first" I replied.
"Well you had better come over and book in so that we can start the pre tests."
"I'm just going to choose some glasses first while I have someone here to help me"
"We need time before the appointment to do the pre-tests so you have to come now" optician woman snapped.
"I'm early anyway so I'll just have a quick look at some glasses"
"The appointment time doesn't include the pre-tests so you don't have time" was the next abrupt optical response.
So Mr Midnite joins in and asks "how long will this take?"
"About 10 minutes but then the optician appointment will be 40 minutes."
So I said "if I don't pick glasses now I won't be buying any."
Optician woman ignored this and said "we need to get you booked in."
So Mr Midnite left and I reluctantly followed her over to a desk. Fair to say I was pretty annoyed and quite upset because I felt like she hadn't listened to me and that she had been rude. I had been early so I definitely had time to pick the specs. It was then I realised she hadn't even asked my name so in fact couldn't actually know I was the right person.
I sat down and she said:
"have you brought your glasses?"
"Have you got something to put your contact lenses in?"
"No, sorry I forgot."
The bitch gave me a dirty look.
So I said "I'm not doing this today" and got up. I was going to leave but that seemed rude to the optician I was due to see next. So I went over to the desk and just told the person there that I needed to cancel my appointment and that I would make another one. Now I didn't intend to get her in trouble or complain but just her bad luck (or karma as I like to call it)the guy I spoke to was the owner. He asked what happened and was very nice. He got me to sit back down and he said he didn't want any of his customers leaving looking like they might cry, which I did. I told him what happened and he apologised and now I'm getting a discount when I go back.
I wouldn't normally make a fuss but this woman never smiled, her tone of voice was not good, she was abrupt and snappy and to me gave off a very negative vibe. I'm going to say she was ugly, I don't mean in looks, I mean in attitude. I really didn't want her near my eyes.
Guess it didn't matter to her if I bought glasses or not she would still get paid. The owner clearly saw it differently.
Spoke to Mr Midnite after and he agreed that she was rude. He said he could see that I was picking up the negativity and he knew I wasn't going to be happy. I am very empathic according to other people!
Now I am refusing to let myself feel guilty. I know she might just have been having a bad day but I have bad days and I would swear my clients don't know, my colleagues do though!
Another World Cup ish comment. Does anyone else think Fabio Capello is a name that belongs to a dance DJ not an England manager. Fabio Capello live from Ibiza type of name! Perhaps that's the problem?
When I got home tonight poor little Star just wasn't herself, my little drama queen was suffering as only royal dogs can. While out for a walk she cried and yelped a few times. On return to the house she had to retire to my bed and snuggle under the duvet. She kept pushing her head under the pillow and crying. The wee one wouldn't eat a treat and occasionally threw herself across the room and tried to stick her head down the back of the sofa cushions.
Clearly something not right!
So the emergency vet was called and the possibility of her been too hot was discussed and rejected. Due to the head burying and whimpering I decided to take her in and get her checked.
After a reasonably short wait a vet aged about 15 saw my little dog. Checked her head, neck etc to the sounds of much crying and found nothing. Checked her heart and it is fine (Cavaliers quite often have dickey tickers). Finally the rear end was examined and immediately the cause of her distress was found, a giant anal abscess. Some disgusting time later accompanied by much doggie squealing we were released from the consulting room.
The next dog in the queue refused to go in having heard and watched the shrieking cavalier tremble across the waiting room.
Cost - £150, knowing Star is OK - priceless.
I hate that you almost need psychic powers to work out what Star wants, Sasha is so clear she almost speaks, Star is hard to interpret. All the head hiding and squeaking had me thinking she had some sort of neurological problem. Anal abscess disgusting but not permanent and easily treated.
The World Cup has provided the opportunity for the Scottish at work to increase their light hearted abuse of the English. Although I am mixed race (English and Scottish) I am classed as English because I grew up south of the border and therefore have been included in the comments.
Work has decorated the canteen with a banner holding all the flags of the Word Cup teams, the English flag (The St George's Cross) has been removed. Offices have been decorated with the USA, Algeria and Slovenia flags to show the Scottish support for the rest of group C. Any English person displaying their support for the home team is just asking for trouble.
The majority of Scottish people who join in with this acceptable form of racism are just having a joke. Obviously there is a long history of the English and Scottish fighting and the border moving up and down through the north east of England. At times the border was so far south that I would have been 100% Scottish. The joking can get a bit annoying, the Scottish hate to see England win and it can get a bit out of hand. There are parts of the south of England where this situation is reversed but the majority of England likes to see Scotland do well, if they were in the World Cup I think most of England would support them.
Listening to the banter at work on Friday made me think about racism and what that actually means.
The UN definition of the term racial discrimination:
But the type of light hearted ribbing that we have between the Scottish and English, is that racism? I don't think it really is, there is no intent to disadvantage anyone with these comments.
There are times when I know I have said things that people think are racist, I've seen the look on their faces when I've made a comment. They are just so sensitive about the risk of offending someone that they wouldn't say things about another race that they wouldn't think twice about saying to an English person. They avoid making jokes about appearance or culture, just in case.
I think this is crazy, we should be able to aknowledge and celebrate our differences rather than fear mentioning then in case we cause offence.
"look mum, a chocolate man"
On the bus we could hear the mum trying to explain about racism to a 2 year old. Pretty much pointless to me, there was no intent to offend in her comment, she just said what she saw.
This is the first clear memory I have and it surprises me that it is a happy memory. I'm not saying I had an unhappy childhood, I don't think I did, but most memories that involve my Dad include some dodgy moments.
One other very clear memory I have from when I was about 7 is of going on holiday, I think to somewhere called Primrose Valley although it could have been a Butlins place. We arrived there and were unpacking the car, I was carrying my bag to the room that was mine and my brother's when my parents realised my brother was missing. My Dad shouted at me because I hadn't been watching my brother. I'm pretty sure no one had told me to watch him. I think he was about 4 at the time. I realise now that my Dad was stressed and worried and just blew up at me because I was there. Even though I realise this I still think it was wrong, I was 7 and I remember crying and crying but just getting shouted at more. The holiday place found my brother, he had seen a play park when we had first arrived and as soon as he was out of the car he had gone to find the park. Even though I remember some other things from that holiday like the donkeys on the beach I mostly remember getting shouted at and feeling that it wasn't really fair.
Lots of my early memories are around playing outside, my bother and I were the youngest children in the street I lived in but the older ones would let us join in. We would play football, cricket and rounders on the grass opposite our house. There were other games that didn't favour the younger children like kiss, cuddle or torture and British bulldog.
Click the flog ya blog icon and follow the instruction on Mummy Time, reach exciting new blogs and meet lovely new bloggy peeps. Go on you know you want to:
I think the problem is that the thoughts I am having are ones that I struggle to express in real life but normally I can write things I find hard to talk about. Maybe I'm just too tired to get my bloggy thoughts straight.
Maybe it will work tomorrow and I can share some memories with you all, maybe not. I'm not saying here that they are bad memories, I didn't have the best childhood ever but it was no where near the worst. I think maybe there are some bits that I am avoiding that are close to the bits I was remembering. Who knows where this blog will go f it ever starts.
I have my loud conscious head voice which is most definitely me. It is the voice that is saying these words in my head as I think and type them. Its the voice of my thoughts, shall I get up now, I need to buy milk, I wonder why he did that etc etc through the day. If I try I can consciously stop this voice reasonable easily, I have to concentrate because as soon as I don't it starts up again generally with a thought like "I can't hear it, oh crap there it is".
Once this voice is quiet I can become more aware of the other voices, the next loudest voice is probably my subconscious. I'm not really sure if that's what it is but its the best way I can describe those thoughts. This is continuous but I don't always notice it. This is the part of my mind that seems to be creative, it is where ideas whiz around at high speed. I'm not always sure this voice is mine, it has ideas and I don't know where they come from, they are random and often interesting thoughts. When I am trying to relax and my conscious thoughts are focused on deep breathing or not thinking these thoughts are easier to hear. When I am trying to sleep it is this voice that keeps me awake. If I try really hard I can get these thoughts to join the conscious thoughts and get them to focus on breathing in and out or counting sheep.
Only then do I become aware of the third voice, it is very quiet but I can hear it between the words when the conscious and subconscious thoughts are synchronised. It seems to be a questioner, or perhaps interrogator is a better description. It asks "why did you do that?" "What did they mean when they said ......?" "Where is Mr Midnite tonight?" Most often it isn't a nice voice and the conscious and subconscious thoughts have to leap in with answers to try to defend myself. The conscious is training its self to say "I don't need to worry about these things, I'm happy and I'm not going to defend myself." This voice isn't always there but when it is I can't really stop it from continuing, its best then to just let my subconscious and conscious thoughts talk over it and hope that it doesn't manage to influence their thoughts.
Below the questioner or maybe instead of it there is another voice that I can only hear if the conscious and subconscious thoughts are in sync and the questioner is out. It is very very quiet, I call it the whisperer. It is much nicer than the questioner, it is a whisper of hopes and dreams. I wish this voice was louder. Perhaps it is the reverse of the questioner, the positive version because within the hopes there are questions.
I suspect there are 9 levels of voices, similar to the levels of hell in Dante's inferno. The very bottom of the levels are the voices I can't distinguish but they are the ones that set the time of everything. I can't hear the words but I can pick up the feelings behind the words. They are what I think of as mood voices, if they are positive then I am happy and positive too. If they get too excited then I become a bit hyper. If they are negative their influence causes me to become depressed and negative.
I have no real control over the lower voices but having tried to work on positive thinking I suspect that if I train my conscious thoughts to be happy and positive it will influence the lower ones and help them to stay positive.
I have no idea if this is normal, perhaps I do hear voices in a crazy way but as long as they don't control me I don't suppose it's a problem?
Is when I search for the light
Pick up my pen and start to write
I struggle, I fight dark forces in the clear moonlight
I can't get no sleep
I'm currently suffering from really bad insomnia, it is driving me mental (well more mental than normal). It's into the 4th week now and I just can't sleep. I have had this before, it comes and goes and so far I haven't found a really good solution for it. I've tried lots of different things over the years, milky drinks and bananas before bed, lavender sleep pillow, warm relaxing baths, set bed and get up times, cutting out caffeine, taking sleeping tablets, puppy cuddle therapy etc etc etc etc.
I used to do yoga during one of my exercise phases and I know it can help me relax so I was thinking of trying that to fight the insomnia. Sunday night is my worst insomnia night, it's a close race but Sunday generally wins. I suspect the cause is going back to work on Monday but as I don't actually lie awake thinking about work, no I lie awake wondering if I have dog food or if I should wear different shoes or composing blogs. It's never anything obviously stressful, just keeps me awake.
So I googled "yoga Edinburgh Sunday" and found a few thousand places that do yoga classes. Here's where it got confusing. I used to go to my gym and do yoga, no problem. Now there are hundreds of different types of yoga:
Hatha Vinyasa Yoga
So which yoga class should I select to cure my insomnia? Not a clue because I have no idea what the differences are, I'm a bit safer with the bottom 3 but they were not what I wanted. If I was after a Tai Chi class I'd have googled Tai Chi.
More research or should I just pick one with a cool name?
I was really enjoying the first 4 episodes, it was like the UK, pretty adult version of heroes. Some young offenders and their probation officer get hit by a strange bolt of lightening during a weird storm. In the days after the storm strange things start happening, Kelly the chav girl can hear what people and animals are thinking, very funny when her dog is licking her face thinking "I've just been licking my balls you dirty bitch". Simon the strangest character realises he can turn invisible, unsurprising as he is pretty invisible most of the time. Alisha's power is a bit odd, everyone that touches her becomes really attracted to her but not in a good way. Nathan doesn't seem to have a power, in his opinion because you can't improve on perfection. Curtis discovers that he can rewind time. Just in time because this happens minutes before their probation officer goes crazy and tries to kill them.
Because of the warning from Curtis the group are able to kill their probation officer and save themselves. The next few episodes are pretty good with the relationships developing between the group as they try to cover up the death.
The 4th episode sees Curtis travelling back in time to the night he got arrested with his girlfriend for buying drugs. He has a chance to save himself (his budding athletics career) and stop his girlfriend from going to prison. It takes him a few goes to get it right and during this you see why some of the other characters are doing community service. Nathan's crime is, as he has said, stealing some pick and mix.
Finally Curtis wakes up to find that he has corrected his life and everything is fine. Then he discovers that the rest of the group were killed when the probation officer went crazy and has to go back and get himself arrested again so that he can save them.
So up to this point I'm enjoying the series, it's pretty funny. Loved Nathan's loud mouthed and offensive character and really liked Kelly's straight talking. Then in the next episode it all goes a bit weird. Another storm effected person has the power to change people's behaviour and is turing the youth of the area into some strange perfect kids that look like they stepped out of a Little House on the Prairie scene. The characters then have a fight to prevent themselves from becoming brain washed. Eventually only Nathan and Simon are left as the yobs we know and love. Simon by this stage has killed a second probation worker (lets no go into that). Nathan manages to masquerade as a converted teen and gets the brain washer onto the roof of a building where they both fall to their deaths. All very sad but totally unconnected from the previous episodes and it just seemed like two half's of a story welded together. Kind of like a Misfit really!
Anyway the end was clever but really really annoyed me! As mentioned Nathan dies, they all go to his funeral. The final scene sees the camera moving through 6 feet of soil until you see Nathan lying in his coffin. He wakes up and has a major celebration because he has a power "I'm immortal". Next he realises he is buried alive has a bit shout then puts on his ipod and just lies there. That's it, the end. Through the magic of the internet I can share that with you:
So since then I've been wondering what happens, if he is immortal will he suffocate and then come back to life as some oxygen filters in only to die again when it runs out? Will he just lie there for eternity? Clearly the ipod battery will run out pretty quick. Thinking an iphone might have been more useful, do any networks guarantee a signal when buried alive?
I just can't get this last scene out of my head. I'm developing a new fear, buried alive. I was dreaming about it last night, thanks E4! I think that they can insert a pipe into the ground that reaches into a coffin. You can hang a rope down the pipe and connect it to a bell so you can ring if you get buried alive. I think I might have to put that in my will.
BUT just found out there is a second series so I won't be left wondering for too long :0)
Not sure if anyone has heard but allegedly the World Cup starts on Friday. Yes really!
I am not really into sports but it tries it's best to sneak into my life. My ex and his best friend were very sporty and my best friends do all sorts of crazy sporty things. Despite this I manage to ignore sport most of the time.
However, constant media coverage of planes landing in South Africa has finally alerted me to this event. The World cup was mentioned on the radio while I was driving Mr Midnite so I decided to mention it in some sort of cool girl way.
"Are Nigeria in the World Cup Mr Midnite?"
"No, don't think so sweetie pie"
"But there will be some West African countries, won't there? Like Ivory Coast and Ghana."
"Don't know, honey bunny!"
So a few days later the boys at work were happily sticking up the World Cup wall chart and to show interest I asked "Which countries are in the World Cup?" The list of countries ran like this:
So I sent Mr Midnite a text saying "Nigeria are in the world cup, shame on you sexy man".
His response when I next saw him was:
"I'm Scottish and we are not in the world cup"
"Umm didn't ask if you were, I asked if Nigeria were in the championship"
"But sweet cheeks I live in Scotland"
And so it went on.
So while wives and girlfriends across the world will be forced to watch multiple football matches or be banished to watch the old TV in the bedroom I will be free to ignore the whole event.
That said I like the world cup, good football is exciting and there is a good chance of England ending in a penalty show down, so will probably watch some of it anyway.
England vs USA on Saturday. We will be playing football hope they aren't, could be some injuries!
I suspect that there is a curiosity centre in the brain. If this does exist it will be shaped like a question mark. The argument has been made that this part of the brain will be larger in women than in men. This is not true, the size of this area can vary in both men and women, it just functions slightly differently due to the effects of hormones.
People with an under-developed curiosity centre have little or no desire to learn new things, they are ideally suited to menial production line type work. They are unlikely to be suspicious and are not likely to join in with gossip (see correlation between the curiosity and gossip centres of the brain Midnite and Midnite 2010).
In men the curiosity centre generally acts under the influence of testosterone. For reasons not yet understood this seems to direct the persons curiosity towards the inner workings of mechanical and technological items. This can lead to the desire to open things up to see how they work. Many advances in the scientific world have been made by men with over sized curiosity centres.
In women the curiosity centre is strongly influenced by estrogen's, this seems to direct the curiosity towards the activities of other people. This is probably an evolutionary trait designed so that women care for their families. The fluctuating levels of estrogen's can however put the curiosity centre into over drive which can cause problems.
Due to the complexities of brain chemistry there are a lot of other factors involved which can influence the direction of the curiosity centre so you do see variations on the general guideline above.
The curiosity centre can be either depressed or stimulation by the introduction of alcohol. It is one of the little discussed risks of drinking.
One of the things that triggers the curiosity centre of my brain is the humble mobile phone. It sits on the table buzzing and singing and is filled with secret samples of someone else's life. I have a near irresistible urge just to pick up phones and see what they hold. This is particularly bad when it comes to Mr Midnite's constantly beeping phone but it is a pretty general urge.
Recently there was an incident that has curbed my mobile phone curiosity for now. I have a few friends who don't care if I look at their phones, so I do! I was happily reading through a guy friends multiple texts from various girls when I opened a picture message with the caption "thought you'd like a copy of your first cum shot". After I had clawed my eyes out I decided that curiosity could perhaps kill more than just the cat.
I love Dr Who, have done since I was little. I loved K9 with the 4th Doctor and used to hide behind cushions when the scary darleks came on. By far my favourite Doctor so far has been David Tennent, I thought he made the perfect Doctor. I am just starting to adapt to the new Doctor, it has been hard but Matt Smith is doing a good job. The 10th episode has been my favourite of this series and new Doctor so far.
***SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN EPISODE 10 STOP READING!***
The episode involved the Doctor and Amy going back in time to hunt aliens with Vincent Van Gogh. I just loved the links in to Van Gogh's paintings and the way they handled his mental illness without it getting too depressing.
There were some fantastic bits in this episode. I loved Vincent tryingto explain how he sees colour, the Doctors response was along the lines of having seen so much (10 life times worth so far) but he would never be able to see the world the way Van Gogh does.
My favourite part was when the Doctor takes Van Gogh forward to see his paintings in a museum, just fantastic casting, writing and acting. Vincent's reaction was perfect.
I loved Amy's optimism that they had changed things and that Van Gogh would live longer and paint more. The Doctors explaination of why showing him the future didn't help was so true, the good days can be fantastic but they don't stop the bad days.
Great episode, hope Richard Curtis writes more!
(NB. Pctures stolen from the BBC, sorry)
Poppy was handed over after work on Wednesday, I had met her a couple of weeks ago so we did know her. On meeting her I thought I had got confused about her breed, she is supposed to be a Cocker Speniel. This is what I though a cocker looked like:
Turns out that's an American Cocker Spaniel, they are the most common type of cocker so I googled Cocker Spaniel images and found that there is an English Cocker Spaniel:
Still not convinced that Poppy is strictly a cocker of either type but she's only a year old so perhaps she will turn into one soon.
Anyway to get to the point, not long after I got my two dogs a guy at work decided he would get a dog for the family. They decided on a spaniel and ended up with a cocker (?) spaniel. I had suggested going to puppy classes and gave them a dog training book I bought as a refresher when I got my dogs.
I have heard some stories about the difficulties he has had with Poppy, basically chewing things and some toilet training issues. When I offered to puppy sit I considered these things but I have dogs just out of puppyhood, I can deal with these normal puppy problems.
So the dog arrived totally stressed and bouncing off the walls. We (thats me and my furry girls) took her out for a long walk to use up some energy and give them a chance to get used to each other. Didn't really work, even at bedtime she was still barking and crying.
Following day I started with an hour walk, nipped home at lunchtime for a quick half hour walk and then after work took the three of them out on a trek. 3 hours walking and still this dog has bounce. My pair were exhausted.
Next day was similar but took them to the beach after work and let them race around chasing a ball, birds, waves etc. She was slightly more chilled after that.
Today has been roasting in Scotland, too hot for dogs. So, I filled the puppy paddling pool and took their toys outside so they could run around and splash in the water. I had planned a long walk tonight but the weather turned and we have thunder storms. So I've had a spaniel bouncing off my walls since about 6.30 when it cooled down.
My list of issues with Poppy are:
1) She bites, not savagely but when playing she uses her teeth and isn't gentle. OK all puppies do this but all my dogs have stopped before 6 months because it's something I just won't risk. Poppy is a year and she lives with children.
2) She either doesn't understand English or has only learned 3 words. I can get her to sit, come and she knows her name. She doesn't know stay, down, off, quiet, out, leave etc etc.
3) She barks if she doesn't get her own way
4) She doesn't understand signals from other dogs
5) She is seemingly impossible to tire
And the reason she is in the kitchen, she just bit my hand. Not badly but she has left marks. What did I do to deserve this? I tried to stop her from climbing over my shoulders to try to drink my cup of tea. How rude!
She goes home tomorrow, can't wait.