Madai here again, catching up with you as Summer slips slowly away and Autumn eases in. Judging by the weather reports we've had an easy time of things compared to "the south" and I am not complaining. I've been doing plenty of lying about (as himself pictured me in last month's blog), taking warm walks by the canal, bathing in the river and entertaining visitors.
Last month I told you that my cousin Tess had died recently, so when her family arrived on holiday from the Emerald Isle they had plenty of loving to give me. What with the young leprechauns visiting at the same time as their cousins we had a house full. They had all been due to visit us at Christmas but that got knocked on the head by you know what, so we all enjoyed Christmas Dinner in mid-August. It was the full antipodean Christmas experience, with roast turkey, crackers, party hats and feeble jokes, with everyone wearing shorts and the temperature outside well into the 80's. For 10 days herself was fully occupied feeding, if not the five thousand, then the hungry eleven, and himself was on constant dishwasher duty. He's still learning I should add, but in case you think that a) he's a slow learner or b) themselves have only just joined the 20th Century with a dishwasher I must tell you that although parts a) and b) may well be generally correct their original dishwasher, dating from about 1992, had just suffered a terminal breakdown. Himself had fitted a replacement but it was taking him some time to learn about stacking the beast, grumbling all the while about the place settings changing. As for me, well I took it upon myself to ease the tidying up work by positioning myself close to the younger guests during mealtimes. Gravity is a great boon to the hungry Labrador, but unfortunately the youngest nipper soon learnt not to wave her food about when I was (about that is).
One of my delights in late summer is the fresh fruit that's available for canine snacking – from the autumn fruiting raspberries that themselves grow (at just the right height), the early season apples and pears that fall to the ground and need clearing and brambles that are rampant if you know where to look. Unfortunately I'm not the only one on the look-out for fallen fruit and Mr Wasp has been making merry in our garden. Since old waspy started on the fallen apples (see the picture of me having a post-wasp incident mouthwash) I've learnt to stand on my back legs to harvest the low hanging snacks – himself adds that I ate ALL the plumson the small treethis year . Anyway I had to as he had frightened me off the apple crop after spotting Hornets (European not Asian) in action there. The one in the picture was about 3cm long, and gave the impression that the apple definitely belonged to him, not me.
So to this month's quiz question: "what bird links part of the title and the main picture". Answers to me as usual at firstname.lastname@example.org – a freshly picked wasp free apple to those who know.
Until next month, this isMadai your Rovering Reporter, keeping an eye out on your behalf.
PS: I'd hoped to keep dictating to divert himself from inserting an inane music link but TOO LATE – listen here for "Charms" sung by Bobby Vee. A bit too schmaltzy for my canine taste – you probably know the singer from his " The night has a thousand eyes ".