Friday, October 27, 2006

Mac's Myrtle

5th March 2006 - 28th June 2006

Came in from a rainy Thursday on the avenue,
Thought I heard you talking softly.
I turned on the lights, the TV and the radio,
Still I can't escape the ghost of you.

What has happened to it all?
Crazy, some would say.
Where is the life that I recognize?
Gone away...

But I won't cry for yesterday, there's an ordinary world,
Somehow I have to find.
And as I try to make my way to the ordinary world,
I will learn to survive.

Passion or coincidence once prompted you to say:
"Pride will tear us both apart."
Well now pride's gone out the window, cross the rooftops,
run away,
Left me in the vacuum of my heart.

What is happening to me?
Crazy, some would say.
Where is my friend when I need you most?
Gone away...

But I won't cry for yesterday, there's an ordinary world,
Somehow I have to find.
And as I try to make my way to the ordinary world,
I will learn to survive.

Papers in the roadside tell of suffering and greed.
Here today, forgot tomorrow...
Here beside the news of holy war and holy need,
Ours is just a little sorrowed talk.

And I won't cry for yesterday, there's an ordinary world,
Somehow I have to find.
And as I try to make my way to the ordinary world,
I will learn to survive.

Every world is my world. I will learn to survive.
Any world is my world. I will learn to survive
Any world is my world.
Every world is our world.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Dear motorist

Dear motorist (I can’t bring myself to call you “human”),
I’m sure this won’t even cause you pause for thought, let alone regret, but it makes me feel better to write it.

Tonight we had a few minutes of magic: my parents and I stood in the cool summer evening on their Fairway verge, by the side of my car, and mused over career crises and family health worries and financial issues and all those mundane concerns that keep me awake at night. I was feeling the weight of the worry and my thoughts were heavy and resigned, and I could hardly believe it when I saw it- just a few feet from us, in the low branch of the small street tree, a pixie face silhouetted against the backlight of Broadway Fair shopping centre.

She was a possum, big ears quivering in the noise of the busy suburban street, and she perched at waist height in the small peppermint, ducking her head coyly between the branches as though eavesdropping on our conversation. After my surprised exclamation, we fell silent and just watched her for a few moment as she curled herself around the tree and peered back at us. She had climbed, while we talked, to the peppermint via an overhanging tree stretching darkly above us and reaching back to the roof of my parents’ house.

“Oh!” my mother said, “we thought we had a possum!”, and we reminisced about the visiting possums of my childhood, of night time roof scrabbling, chopped fruit offerings and glowing eyes in the torchbeams of eager kids on summer evenings. Our possum obliged by edging down the tree trunk towards us, leaning out precariously with her claws scraping on the peppermint bark, and I marvelled at how pink her nose twitched in the darkness, the shine of the streetlights in her eyes, the bristle of her tail. As my father was dispatched to the kitchen for a piece of apple, my heart was charmed, lifted from the concerns of a few minutes earlier and I imagined a time in the near future when I might stand here on this suburban street with my own child and share the curious company, the unexpected joy, the pure magic of this wild creature come to meet us.

As we stood enjoying the moment, I became aware of the headlights approaching from behind, the rising roar of a car in a hurry (as they always are) down Fairway. “Stand still, oh, don’t run now,” the whispered entreat, and in the clich├ęd slowing of time, we watched our little possum scurry down the base of the peppermint tree, across the kerb, onto the bitumen. I don’t remember if there were words to my prayer, but I know I prayed for the speed of the possum, the separation of the wheels, the preservation of this rare fleeting moment of joy. And it all ended with a crunch that I felt in my gut like a blow, nausea welling up with disbelief.

The car braked briefly after impact but did not stop- I suppose their shopping or dinner or evening TV was more important than the fate of a small pixie-faced possum who ended her curious life cradled in my hands, her chest crushed, her soft fur adrift, her warm pink paws curled and cooling in defeat.

She was just a possum, and I’m so glad, as I’m sure you are, that she didn’t dent or scratch or mark your car. But I have to admit that it’s not just the resonating sound of that impact, but the thought of bringing my child into your sort of “society”, that makes me sick to my stomach.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Ivanhoe Sally

Ivanhoe Sally, doing a bit of a demo at the Royal... she was a bit amped by the crowd and atmosphere, but had great time

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More Royal Agility Pics

More Jasper (Ob Ch Brynbank Dangeros Liasion ADX JDX )... and no, its not just the effect of all that hair, he is moving quick:

Karen Phillips' Murphy (Lucratif Original Chill CDX ADM JDM ET), the old master at work:
Amanda Houston and Ben (Daheim Lucky Star ADX JDX CDX)- and yep, that's the same Daheim as Queani:

Sue Hogben's Nifty (Guirmere Nifty Lad ADX JDM ADO JDO GD SPD), who doesn't seem at all slowed down by all those big letters dragging along behind his name:

Young Riot (Hotnote As Good As It Gets AD JDX PT), who like Nifty + Terra, seemed to amp up for the crowds

What is with all these tricolour border collies? Anyone would think at least half the agility dogs in WA were tricolour border collies... and that's probably not that far off!
Terra (Bellview Foxy Lady ADX JD ADO JDO), another very quick young dog with lots of letters, who only seems to get faster:
Kriszty, left behind in Terra's dust, tries to regain her confidence by showing the crowd some snazzy moves from her last dance production (Saturday Night Fever, I believe):
More Terra, because she's so good looking, and because there just aren't enough photos of tricolour dogs on this blog already...
Giving someone a piece of her mind:
Kriszty and Terra have developed a new contact technique- not 2o2o, not 1RTO, no- this is FAITA (Fluffy Arse In The Air): Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Final Day- Perth Royal Agility

Well, its all over for another year. And we actually came out of the Royal with some success, other than Fred's win...

I'm embarrassed to say that Muddy actually won the Novice Agility. He was perhaps slightly better than earlier in the week with his ring-stress issue. He started off from the line with something like his training speed in both agility and jumping, and although he slowed down and went away with the fairies again in both rounds, there was minimal walking and a bit more kind of running, in a half-arsed kind of way.

He didn't qualify in either ring- in jumping he ran (or moseyed) past the tunnel to have a sniff at the sheep or the crowd or both, and in agility he went clear until the the penultimate obstacle, the dogwalk, where he practically stopped for a picnic on the down ramp, but got an unexpected burst of energy just at the bottom, which surprised him so much he leapt off the contact. Oddly everyone else got at least one fault (in fact I think only 2 dogs avoided DQ) and somehow we were the fastest (probably least slow is more accurate in Mud's case).

Anyway I did take some pics today, but my stupid camera decided to autofocus on something behind my target in almost every shot, so they are all slightly blurry.

Emmy the GSP (Morunda MGM Grand ADX JD CD) with Lisa P:

Jess UD ADM JDM, the very naughty dog...usually our state's top agility dog, as Jill's commentary reminded people, invariably just before Jess flipped Kriszty her furry middle finger and showed that even good girls can be bad sometimes (we love you Jess :)).

Brooklyn the Aussie (Ch Tuscamada Designer Made CDX AD JDX) with Deb Hyde:
Maggie Hankinson and flying black lab Blackboy Black Magic UD ADM JDM ET
Anne True and George AD JDX GD ET on the dogwalk:

"Do you think the judge spotted that?":

The Hosutons' Sonny (aka OCh Brynbank Magic Sunday UD ADM JDM):

Sandi Gee and toller Scooter (Ptolomy Choc Chip CDX ADX JD ):
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Fred wins the Royal!

Boylee Fred (and some bloke called Richard) won the Yard event at the 2006 Perth Royal Show, equal first with Grant Cooke and Tilly.
Not too shabby for a dog that sleeps on the bed (guess I'll have to stop complaining about all the hairs on my pillow, eh?).

Fred in action:

Yes, border collies can back.

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Friday, October 06, 2006

The Perth Royal Show 2006

Well I love the show. Its always hot +/or bucketing with rain, there's never enough room for everyone, and I always leave with a headache and a resolution not to do it again, but, like childbirth, those memories are soon erased and its not long before I'm planning next year's entries.

This year- the weather was beautiful, but our results, hmmm... Teams- Jack did okay, given how long he's been away from trialling. Certainly better than our recent teams jumping effort at Midland, where he morphed into the rarely seen NaughtyJack and gave me the middle finger at the start line. The rest of our team (Rosie and Mia) were stars, and we would have been in the running for the finals if it were not for Samroc's awful injury at Midland, which put him out of the running and brought Muddy into the team as reserve.

Muddy- hmm, less said, the better, I guess. I suppose it was unfair to throw him into the Royal as his second ever trial (and first for about 18 months). I sort of expected to have heaps of off-courses, mess up the weaves, and generally run amuck, but I never expected him to completely shut down. Yes, I suddenly became that most gruesome of agility sights- the clapping, squeaky voiced handler trying desperately to encourage their uninterested dog out of a trot. Muddy just did not want to be there- he walked most of the courses, went past 3-6 obstacles each round, and was basically the crappest agility dog I've ever seen. You would never believe it was the same dog I have at training- who isn't blindingly fast, but pretty quick and enthusiastic, and kind of fun to run. Muddy at the Royal was not fun at all.

The Open and Masters events on Monday weren't much better for us- Jack had another weird episode of hunched back and severe pain (?tummy) after getting out of the ute on Sunday arvo, so he got through 3 of his 4 runs with some anti-inflamms, and while not fast, was passable, and actually came 3rd in his first time in Open. By the 4th run (MJ) of the day, he was sore and suffering, and despite a valiant effort, he seized up again and I had to pull him. Seems fine after a couple of days rest now, thankfully.

Muddy was still pretty useless, distracted and away with the fairies for both his Open runs, but maybe a bit better than his Teams non-effort. He actually ran a couple of short sections! I'm still undecided about whether to give him a crack at Novice next Saturday- might wait and see on the day. I'll be in between night shifts, so my tolerance for half-arsed kelpies will be even lower than usual, if that's possible.

Some pics (not flash, battery was running out, but who's complaining?):

Troy and Deco tackle the seesaw:

Karen and Riot, flying over the seesaw- nice contact!

Riot was flying round in general:

Terra weaving:

and waving her fluffy butt at the crowd:
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Point Resolution- portraits of my boys

Bill- after only about 30 mins of immersion, he starts to shiver and probably wrinkle like a prune, but still, there's no extracting him. Bill is a water baby.

Number One Boy Jack- waterlogged and squirty, but still wondering if I'll throw his ball...

Scrawny Mud, all shivers and barks.
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