Posted by: Valerie | September 23, 2010

Of doggies and froggies and other things…


Joe and I went to a dog show last weekend. Not just any dog show either. It was a Newf(oundlander) show. Over a hundred big cuddly web-footed beasts were taking part, having come from as far afield as Alaska and the UK. Miles and miles of drool and slobber were a prominent feature and those foolish enough to stop and pat the doggies were enthusiastically anointed. I was plastered!

A pair of big beauties

 Bancroft’s little Millenium Park was the venue and as there is an open air stage, there was naturally a band of oldies dressed in their denim overalls playing good ol’ hillbilly tunes. Of course there were several exhibitors of canine items, including a canine cake (for human consumption) in the shape of the original Dougal of the BBC’s The Magic Roundabout. Dougal was small and shaggy so I’m not sure why the cake baker didn’t attempt a Newfie pup instead. Maybe it would have taken too much icing. And black isn’t such an attractive colour for a cake, I think.

Dougal cake

Gittar picker

There was a dog artist, a dog photographer, a dog wood carver and even a dog Reiki practitioner. Humour aside, this is something I have direct experience of. Some years ago, my friend Janice’s elderly Rottweiller had a lot of arthritic pain and on several occasions when he was literally crying with pain I was able to help him with Reiki.

Other than that excitement, it is Medical Week around here. On Wednesday I was relieved to hear the ophthalmologist tell me that the floaters in my eye were not a real problem – phew! Then today we had to drive to Peterborough, about 100 km from here, for me to have three different appointments at the hospital. (Nothing serious, I am assuming – that what I always assume.) And tomorrow we retrace our trip for Joe to go and have his heart stent checked. We had thought of staying overnight in a hotel but in the end decided it was not worth the expense. Next week I have to go again – for an asthma test this time. We are surely burning the rubber on Highway 28.

Our drive to Peterborough takes us through the small town of Lakefield. What a delight it is. The town is probably best known for its extremely posh private school, Lakefield College. (Prince Andrew went there for a term or two as a teenager yonks ago.) As a result of having rich parents trotting around town, there are some neat shops, bakeries and restaurants all vying for their dollars. Running through the town is (I think) the Trent River in which I have discovered from the map, the charmingly named Polly Cow Island. Now just how on earth did it get a name like that? There’s got to be a story there!

A fine crisp autumn sky

Right now the autumn scenery is lovely with the trees almost at their gaudy peak and the temperature is a benevolent 16 degrees or so. We have had a couple of really delightful walks in our woods recently and we did see some recent signs of bear activity – claw marks on the tree – but that was the day I didn’t take my camera. Anyway the bear didn’t show up so no loss there. Hah! As if I would be busy setting up my camera if there were a bear staring me in the face. I did however get a really good photo of a much less dangerous critter that was hiding in the grass.

I truly love living here in so many ways – especially when it’s not winter! But then, that is what makes fall so special. We have such a spectacular treat before the first snow. It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only a couple of weeks away.

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Responses

  1. I have a good friend in Lakefield. Her name is Pat Pope and her son is or was the headmaster at the school. I think I have her most recent address if you would like to talk to someone really neat. And phone number.
    I should write to her soon, and tell her about Jack.

    • Er, yesss, although I would be a bit shy.

  2. Poly Cow Island
    This island was once a marshy peninsula on the west side of the mouth of the Otonabee River. In l8l9, the southern section was called Fothergill Point. It was the location of Charles Fothergill’s hunting lodge, Castle Fothergill. It was renamed Jubilee Point in l887, by steamboat entrepreneur Henry Calcutt, to honour the 50th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s reign. The island was named for the Cow (now Cowie) family of Hiawatha. Other places in Peterborough County have been named for members of this family, such as Jack’s Lake near Apsley, named for “Handsome” Jack Cow, and Polly Cow Island below Young’s Point, named for his daughter. In l867, part of Cow island, along with others mentioned, was purchased by Alfred Harris. It has always been a popular spot to trap muskrats. It is said that Rice Lake muskrats possess the finest skins in the world. Victor Harris, a great-great grandson of Alfred Harris carries on the operation of the Rice Lake Fur Company at this location.

    • Wow, Lori – you are a fantastic source of information on this! Where did you fnd it all? And I thought someone might have a cow called Cow. BTW Young’s Point is a favourite stop for us as it has the most wonderful country store.

  3. You do go to some interesting events. When you live in a bigger city (Tucson hardly counts a big city) there are more activities available but we don’t do any of them!!

    • I think you have a point there. When there is very little to go to, you make a point of going to what there is. Bancroft actually has a live theatre but most of the productions are amateur. We do get occasional good stuff though but we get lazy about going out at night as it is 25km into the town. Deer and moose gallop all over the road at night and there are lots of collisions as well as five months of ice and snow.

  4. At the AKC site
    http://www.akc.org/breeds/newfoundland/
    They say: “His coat can be black, brown, gray, or white and black.”
    So the cake could have been a Newf! Sort of.

  5. As regards your sighting of recent bear activity, I read this in the news today. A woman in Montana fended off 200lb bear with a courgette from her garden! We have had stacks of courgettes this year in Neasham. Is this why we haven,t seen a bear?

    • You’ve got it, Pam. That’s why I eat garlic and I’ve never had a problem with vampires!


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