On Wednesday, a small group of us had a walk around day on the outskirts of the estate, to clear up any far-ranging pheasants or the odd woodcock. I never saw much, but the group brought home half dozen of each. One of the group brought a friend from the city who pitched in, and we sent him home with the birds. He even helped prepare them for the oven, so he's gone back with a new skill too.
The weather was cold but sunny today, so we took Spud and Pip to the seaside for a romp. It's another tick in the box for Spud's socialising program: see lots of people and traffic. With the added bonus of fun splashing in the water and meeting other dogs. Less fun is the fact that she still gets car sick and she managed to get it over 3 coats, a pair of gloves, and the seat cover. 2 miles from our destination.
The Jurassic Coast - Lyme Regis
Pip comes along to set the tone for Spud, as she's well socialised and pretty relaxed in her approach to everything.
We watched Dorset's version of the Polar Bear Club go for their New Year's Day swim in the ocean. The dogs joined them in the surf. We walked to the end of the pier (as seen in the French Lieutenant's Woman) and back, then sat outside a pub and all 4 of us scoffed a bowl of french fries with lashings of mayonnaise. We wandered into the town for a bit of window shopping and the dogs got a few pats on the head from passers-by. Both dogs are dried off now and asleep in front of the wood stove. Some things never change.
The Spuddler, 9 months old
OK, so maybe our celebrations lack glamour. I'm not much into the New Year's Eve partying but I like the 'clean slate' feeling of New Year's Day. No resolutions per se but a chance to take stock: what's on track, what needs re-examining or repairing, new projects to be attempted.
I hope that, however you chose to mark the change, the new year will be productive and rewarding for you all.