A five day trip last month was no exception. I wasn't off the ferry for more than fifteen minutes before new routes had me lost, and endless traffic had me chomping at the bit to return to my island. However, eventually I found the restaurant where my family and friends were waiting for me to join them for lunch - it has become almost a tradition for us to meet at the Riverhouse Pub near Deas Island Park on my way to or from the ferry.
After lunch, I headed out to my friends Ann and Ken in Abbotsford, who always offer Mitzi and me their self-contained lower level as a base while I take off hither and yon, and never fail to not only stock the fridge in 'my' space but also share many an amazing meal with me upstairs. In return, I let them beat me at whist at least once per visit. They feed my stomach, I feed their egos. And we share a lot of laughs. Mitzi isn't quite so happy about the visits - she is quite the homebody and even though our mainland space is familiar to her, she'd still much rather not travel at all:
Still, they have a big back yard that is frequently visited by cats, and there are few things that sniffer-dog Mitzi loves more than tracking the route a cat or two has taken.
|Sniff sniff sniff|
One grey, one orange, one black and white cat...
|Which way did they go?|
On Friday, I headed out to visit my friend Deb and her dog Lily and cat Hugo, at their new condo in South Surrey.
|Hai! I'm Hugo! |
I hazn't seen you for a while!
|You're not going to monopolize my mama, are you?|
After a delicious lunch, Lily informed us it was time to go for a walk in the woods near her home:
|C'mon! Hurry up! We've got a ball to chase!|
|Oops, sorry mom, I didn't mean to lose it. I know it's down there somewhere!|
Find it, find it, find it!
|Dogs! You don't see me losing my toys on some silly walk!|
Saturday saw a visit to Emma and her dad. Emma, who turned twelve this week (Happy Birthday, Ems!), is doing well after a fun summer of swimming and lazing about in the interior. She is a water dog through and through. Her three favourite joys in life are food, swimming, and her dad. I'm not sure what order she would place those in. I'd like to think that I'm in her top ten still, and from the way she greets me, I think I am.
|Emma (in front) and her best buddy Abby.|
She who stares the hardest gets the first treat.
On Sunday I spent time at Hearts on Noses Sanctuary with Janice and the piggies. It was raining, so even the herd I fostered - Scotch and Soda and their ten 'babies' (who are now nine years old!) - was reluctant to come out of their nice cozy houses without a little added incentive.
|Oh, okay, I guess we'll come say 'hi' if you're going to feed us apples.|
Once they were out, they followed me around for a while - probably hoping for more apples - while I greeted my other porcine - and canine - friends.
|Who's out there?|
|Oh, look, someone left these apples near my door!|
|Did Santa Claus come early?|
Whisper, one of my three velcro pigs, stayed with me the whole visit and introduced me to his new friend Sugar Ray. Sugar Ray, like a person with their head in a good book, was more interested in having his head in a good pumpkin than having his photo taken.
|Pumpkinhead,,. aka Sugar Ray|
|Whisper doesn't mind sharing|
Janice introduced me to some of the pigs who were new since my last visit, like Pete who carefully supervised Janice's apple-toss technique as we doled out treats to everyone:
|Pete, not impressed with a throw where the apple doesn't land at his feet.|
|Chilco gets an apple too!|
|And what would a visit to Hearts on Noses be without a|
photo of my pal Rose, with her beautiful feathery ears?
Coffee with my friend Luanne, dinner out with Ann and Ken at the Spaghetti Factory, some quiet time to read, little walks with Mitzi, and soon the five days were over and we were headed back home. Allie greeted us with long stories of how Mary, our kind neighbour who takes care of her, was "too stingy with the Temptations and where the heck were you anyway?! ", and Mitzi bounced all over the house before running into the bedroom to snuggle down in her familiar space for a long winter's nap.
|There's no place like home!|