I normally love dog-showing. It is my hobby and I meet my friends and their dogs there and we show, we eat and we blether. What could be more relaxing?...well, it wasn't this past weekend. I drove down to Edinburgh with five dogs, in the drizzling rain and first up I found I had to pay £3 for parking...at an Open show?...I don't remember doing that before, except for a Championship show. Then the hall had been changed but that was no great problem. In fact it saved a haul of the trolley up a hill. Inside it was warm, too warm for the several layers of clothing I had donned for this time of year and especially this particular year! However that was unavoidable since it had suddenly turned much milder and later in the day the heating was turned off.
The show started promptly with the Veteran classes: veteran dog, vintage dog followed by veteran bitch and lastly vintage bitch. Spencer was in the second class, vintage dog and Tass was to be in veteran bitch, which class followed. I explained this to our steward in the papillon ring and she said she would inform the judge. Normally judging starts in other rings on the completion of all veteran classes. Not yesterday! It started at the end of the first veteran class, which meant that I either missed the breed classes or I had someone else show some of my dogs. I do not pay my entry fee for this. I show my own dogs, if at all possible. And to make matters worse, both rings could hardly have been farther apart! It ended up with Tass and Charlie, neither of them being the easiest dogs to show, being shown by a friend. There was slight compensation when Mo went Best of Breed then on to be placed group 4.
I then started to pack up for the homeward journey. Now my trolley can take 4 cages but I dare not risk piling it any higher as the ground to the carpark can be rough, so I folded down one of the five cages and put Spencer in beside Tass for this part of the journey. So far so good! My little folding table, my folding "director's" chair, my rucksack and the extra folded down cage were secured on top and off I trundled, that is until I reached the part where I had to cross a strip of grass to reach the car. Someone, somewhere, in their wisdom, had partitioned off our part of the carpark from the tarred, access road. My trolley sank in the mud and being ever so slightly top heavy, toppled over into this gooey mess....only yards from my car. Everything was dripping with a thickish brown liquid, even some of the dogs. A couple from a nearby car ran to give some assistance and upright the cages and luckily none of the dogs is any the worse for the experience but Charlie was unusually quiet on the homeward journey! All the cage covers went into the washing machine along with other bits and bobs and the rucksack was propped near a radiator. The dry mud was brushed off this morning and even Mo had to be brushed free of the stuff along one of his sides. Now all I need to do is wash the dashboard of the car where something had brushed against it and I'll be ready for my next show next week!