What is it about the french and their dogs?


Here, where we live in the depths of rural France, some dogs are tied up on three foot of chain and stay there like that for the whole of their lives, never taken out for a walk, nor taken in the house; one has one of those awful collars that deliver an electric shock each time she barks and so when we walk past she barks and then yelps – no that’s not the word – she screams in pain, oh and by the way it doesn’t work – when the battery goes flat she still barks…until they put a fresh battery in.

Another in our village is a boxer who has the run of a large courtyard – who is ok with people but attacks other dogs – he escaped this morning and would have killed our cairn terrier but I picked her up in time – just…

His owners think nothing of going away for a week and leaving him in the courtyard – presumably some other neighbours throw some food to him. Poor dog barks and barks for the first few days and then eventually gives up – feeling he’s been abandoned no doubt.

It’s a great hunting area here, and the hounds are kept for 6 months of the year in a small pen, no one takes any notice of them at all, and then on a weekend for the other 6 months they are bundled into a trailer and then can run around after the deer and wild boar.

The French government has now passed a law to say that animals are ‘sentient beings’ – guess what – before this they were considered as goods or chattels…


I wonder when we will become kinder, to each other, and to all the creatures of this earth? Somehow, I feel if some members of the human race can kill, maim and torture their fellow humans, what chance have the creatures got?



All my family and friends treat their animals and pets with the love and respect they deserve and happily the world is a better place for it.


a drop of the black stuff…


better late than never… ok so it was November when I was last near Galway having a drop of the oul porter.. so I am never going to make a regular blogger – nor any sort of real blogger, I suppose but Spring is springing in this lovely part of rural France and my hideous hangover has finally abated – no – not from November’s porter but from Saturday’s wine – lashings of it and far too much for someone the wrong side of sixty…or could it have been a dodgy mussel in the paella? Or a bit of both? Who knows… but I am grateful to be over it!

IMG_2515   IMG_0476


Not only was there pints of porter but also  in Ireland there were dogs, friends and family, beautiful views and lots of water.



And then its off to Spain we would jolly well go, stopping off to see Gibraltar on the way to the Algarve and meeting up with friends near Orba and escaping the worst of the french winter weather


IMG_2596 Escaping the winter…



I learnt that not knowing a word of spanish is a terrible handicap when himself spent a week in hospital in Antequera.

I also learnt that the kindness of strangers is a truly wonderful thing and there are people who were on the campsite at Humilladero who saved my sanity. I can’t thank them enough.

Then hallelujah and praise be – my sister arrived. Up all night – to travel by bus, by plane and travel sick to boot she arrived like a breath of fresh air and I was no longer alone!


All was well eventually, and a little over 4000 km on the clock of the camper van and we were back home. And wasn’t I glad?

And my quotation to end these ramblings on

If you want to turn your life around try thankfulness’   G.Good