So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria, God and life, teaching and gardening plus the occasional cow

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Happy Birthday Swingle!

Well, I’m guessing really, we know she was born in October. So now she’s officially three!  She’s really grown up this past year. She’s got her qualification in sleeping on the spare bed. She now is more picky about her own food, she’ll even leave her breakfast if I give her the wrong one. But she will never turn down a genuine Scoobie snack of any sort.  She doesn’t need quite so much exercise and now is more inclined when playing with Chira who is only a year old, to sit and watch her gallop around her and then suddenly pounce!  Her best friend is still Bella, they are just the greatest of mates.  I still curse myself for having introduced the two walks a day routine, but can’t break it!She’s an international dog, having travelled with us in the car through France and Germany and England. When we were there, we would go to the town parks to exercise her and there was always someone for her to play with, even if she did get attacked a couple of times. I got so fed up with people asking what breed she is, so I’d reply in German,’Lungaukletterhund’ which means Lungau climbing dog, where she still likes to leg it up steep sides. Most people were impressed, I think!

Her favourite hobby is barking especially with guests, and we haven’t really got on top of that one! She does have a tendancy to panic, if Dave or I raise our voices, where ever she is, she’ll rush in quivering and doing her paw thing until we convince her all is OK. But if we shout at her, it has no effect!  She still hunts woozles and mice in the undergrowth, but she’s not so sharp now and hasn’t had many this summer!  I think I’ve mentioned the wasps!

We can now leave her for about five hours alone at home, and she doesn’t destroy the place if she gets her treats as we leave! She wont now play with rubber or plastic toys, but give her a stuffed toy, she will disembowel it and play with it with great delight! She still rarely sleeps on our bed, which is a relief!

She regularly mugs pensioners, well. Mr B our neighbour who always has a treat for her in his pocket. She will also do anything for a good neck rub!

Wouldn’t be without her, Happy Birthday Swigs!


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Swingle and Wasps

Poor Swingle seems to be getting totally twitched about wasps! She had a sting on her eyelid when she was about a year old, but this year has been a disaster for her!  Firstly she got stung on her tummy while romping on the rocks at the castle. Then she ate one when I was out, but Dave was in and thankfully it was swallowed before it stung. Then I was at Elkes and Swingle was chomping on grass under an apple tree with her mate Chira, when she suddenly came running to me, her paw held high and shaking like a leaf. We couldn’t find and wound, but made a vets appointment for all the symptoms to be gone within an hour. Now today, a wasp flew in the house and she asked to be let into the garden, and I had to bribe her to get back in. Poor dog, she’ll need aversion therapy soon!


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Guilt

On Easter Bank Holiday Monday I took Swingle for a walk on the Felsen Promenade, which is a path cut into the cliffs on one side of Ramingstein, beloved by everyone and dogs too.  It was an eventful walk as first I tripped over a stone and couldn’t get up for a minute so Swingle had to wash my face! Then about halfway along  I saw an Easter egg and a Mars bar stashed at the side. Oh dear, someone missed one yesterday I thought. Swingle had smelt it and of she had been off the lead, she would have had it. So I walked on, and on return thought, what the heck! Swingle had the egg and I the chocolate.

When I got down to the road, I saw a Grandmother with a small Granddaughter carrying a bag and looking for something. Have you ever wanted the ground to swallow you up? I had passed them on the way up, they’d know it was me although someone else had taken the same route, I knew he hadn’t done the whole path. I was mortified. I decided in the end if challenged, I would say I thought it was a forgotten one and I was sorry. The truth. I had heard Dave’s voice at the back of my head saying to leave it, as she has said to many things over the years, but I ignored him. I didn’t tell him when I got home, but I did my mate Jenny, who burst out laughing. Serves them right, it shouldn’t have been left in a public place!

That helped but I still feel guilty!


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Swingle finds some snow!

Up at Schönfeld for our first big walk of the year, there was still some snow left, so guess who went nuts! FB click on the link for the slideshow!

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Swingle, scoobie snacks,stinks, sleep and squirrels

One medium sized black dog was nearly put up for re-homing last week! It began with the knowledge that she did need worming because she was so hungry all the time. I went out one afternoon leaving my new Primark jacket in the hall forgetting I had left her favourite scoobie snacks in the pocket. Result above, one ruined coat. It wouldn’t have been so bad if I hadn’t just bought it on our last trip home to replace another much worn jacket that Swingle had chewed a lot in her first year, Dave said I looked scruffy in it, but I’d loved it. The only way I could get rid of it was leaving it in our son’s cupboard when we left the UK.

The next day I took her for a walk by the pong house, one of our favourite ones in Tamsweg, and so so she found a dead fish and rolled in it. Result one furious dog having to have a bath, served her right.

Then I got the worm tablets and as I had suspected and forgotten, she reacts badly to the chemical = two broken nights and another trip to the vets.

Then one bleary eyed morning, I let her out then looked still bleary out of the kitchen window. On the bird table was one of the cute tufty black squirrels that have been pigging all the sunflower seeds. Swingle swaggered around the corner and scared it. But instead of leaping safely into the tree behind, it leapt into the greenhouse where I hope it actually knocked itself out it was so quick. So next thing, one pleased dog was finishing off the squirrel.  She didn’t try to eat it and let me take it away. Poor Tufty. I’ve seen another one since, it was also a youngun, and this had the sense to jump into the Elderberry tree.

This week, Swingle has been playing at being a prefect dog……..so far


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Village tales #1

I keep on having these random chats with Mr B and the man with the black labrador, all of which I find fascinating.

Labrador man dog sits for his son, but the dog doesn’t really know how to play and has very weak hindquarters, and is very narrow bodied, not a good specimen, but that’s not my business! He lives opposite us across the Thomaterbach, and I’ve often seen him exercising the dog in the filed, see picture! Last week, I met them and I suggested we take the dogs into a field for a run! Result, I’ve wanted to look around the field for ten years! The dogs played, well Swingle ran around like a greyhound and kept on knocking the Lab over. He didn’t know what to do! We let the dogs into the Bach and at last I got a view of the old wier from the other side.  I could see how the river had been diverted along the bottom of our land and it had run into the Mur for the turbine that powered the paper factory, now  brick factory. Its all concreted up now. But then he wold me that the Hardts who restored this building during the war dammed the river and made a swimming pond there. Times long gone.

Then on our was he pointed out to me the clump of trees in the field (across the river in picture) and we went to look. It used to be an Ice pond, and the local pub would harvest it and store it in the cellar.  I think he meant that it was for the beer making process, but maybe it was just to cool things, more interesting things! We then had two tired dogs and walked home our separate ways. Now I may not get another chance to go in the field as its hay growing season, but maybe in autumn I could ask him if I could go in with my camera…….