Wednesday, December 22, 2010

I Arrive At The Farm And Greet My Sister

The dogs and I arrived at the farm about noon on Saturday. I kept in touch with my sister by cell phone. She was on her way to visit from Ohio but would arrive an hour or two later than I did. That gave me time to unpack, clean my apartment and relax:

When my sister arrived, we first introduced all my dogs to Madeline, her daughter's three year old Papillon. We unpacked her car and decided to take the dogs for a hike across the north hay field hoping that would help them bond as a pack. The weather was gray, cold and threatening, but otherwise made for perfectly acceptable hiking:

The Papillons (all three of them!) were at first intimidated by the snow which to dogs with such small stature wasn't a minor obstacle. But Papillons are quick, bright and athletic. They quickly got the hang of it and also learned to follow in our tracks for easier movement through the snow. That's Madeline on the right, followed by Clover and Daphne:

I supposed this was a totally new experience for Madeline, but she was game for trying anything as long as my sister was with her. She stayed as close to her feet as possible, but also began to relax, explore and look around:

My two silly puppies began wrestling but Madeline was not yet comfortable enough to join them:

Seamus and Fergus are pretty much immune to the snow and cold. This was just another easy walk for them and, since the Papillons were all hanging out together, they formed their own team of two. Wally and Winky stayed back in the warm apartment:

After crossing the field, we entered the woods:

Madeline was beginning to feel braver and left my sister's feet to venture forward with the dogs. That's her following Seamus, with Daphne and Clover in the lead:

Everyone seemed to be having a grand time. A hike in the fields and woods is about as good as it gets for a dog. For me also:

Fergus and Daphne look out into the distance:

We crossed tiny Sunset Brook and ascended the hill into the next field. This was a new experience for Madeline and perhaps for Clover also. Madeline went a different route with my sister and Clover simply jumped the brook. Surprisingly, Daphne wouldn't cross over and I finally went back and carried her over the brook:

But still it was cold and my sister had just arrived, so we began returning to the warm apartment:

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