56 December 13972

A few things have been happening since my last note....

Master Craig has been very busy marking, collating and reporting marks - that's the main reason for my tardiness - but we've also had a human death in the family and the birth of a cousin for Young Master Elliot - so we've had the whole range of emotions going on.

Talking of the whole range of emotions, Ellie and I have ranged from an extended walk near Uni where we got to chase hundreds of rabbits and also, in the same week, we got locked in the garage whilst the human family got to visit Young Master Elliot's cousin ("Hadley Francis"). We wanted to go on the trip, but Young Master Elliot certainly doesn't travel light - what with his pram, chair, nappies, toys, clothes etc. there isn't room for us - I suggested that I could drive and Master Craig and Ellie could catch the train, but Master Craig didn't think that was a very good idea - the last time I drove to Sydney, we ended up taking a pit stop in a dam (I was getting really hot and just wanted to cool down). Anyway, I can't stand Ellie's constant whining asking "How much further, Roge?" - she really needs to grow up.

The rabbits at Uni really were a high point - there were literally hundreds - but did we manage to get any? No. I blame Ellie - she doen't sneak very well. The skill is probably even a bit more complicated than that - I use a 5 point plan:

  1. sneak
  2. loiter
  3. sneak
  4. lurch
  5. pounce

In contrast, Ellie uses a 3 point plan:

  1. run madly
  2. bark frantically
  3. miss all rabbits
It really isn't much fun hunting with her - I got so sick of her that I decided to wander off and see if I could find some rabbits by myself - not much luck, though - Ellie's 3 point plan had already cleared a 8 square kilometer area of plains of all rabbits. But did that stop Ellie? No - she started chasing butterflies - she really has no sense of decorum.

Next time we go rabbit chasing, I think I'll lure Ellie away from Master Craig (she's a bit of a Master's dog) and tie her to a tree so that I can catch a few by myself - it's just like what ancient mariners had to do to themselves to avoid the Sirens - but we might actually get something to eat.

You may have already read the "Other cautionary note" on our main page - it looks like December/January may be slow months for us - Mistress Liz has put her foot down and confined Master Craig to barracks for the period - he has to actually avoid the computer and focus on her and Elliot over the summer break.

This is quite an interesting turn of events because Mistress Liz has hidden Master Craig's Christmas present in the garage. She was sneaking around a bit, so I stayed outside and just looked in the window - she didn't see me, but I could see everything that she was up to. Well, Master Craig is in for a treat - he's going to get a 10 litre can of housepaint, some new brushes and a whole lot of spackfiller. I think that Mistress Liz might have it in mind that Master Craig is going to spend summer doing a spot of painting (I thought he was going to do portraits, but Mistress Liz only got one colour of paint, so it's probably going to be more like very sparse landscapes).

I think that Master Craig may have had different things in mind, though - he has been stocking up on some science fiction (about 6 books by Greg Bear), Cure CD's and a new pair of headphones - maybe he got them for Mistress Liz - to keep her busy so that she doesn't interrupt whilst he paints.

Master Craig is very aware of the pending cessation of his internet activities. I think he may be going a little silly:

These may be some of the reasons why Mistress Liz seems intent on restricting his internet access.

Well, off to the mail:

"We just had a BIG snow fall...38 inches. I found that all laws of where you can go to the bathroom are CANCELLED. I went on the sidewalk,deck and the driveway. OH-What fun. I love the snow and found that my mistress also like to play with me in the snow. She spent several hours making mountians of snow just for me to play on. I also get go 4-wheeling through the snow mountians in mistresses truck. This always ends with a stop at the local snack store. Where I get a treat from the store. Life is GREAT!

Only 34 days till Christmas. I have to get ready filling out the cards and putting up lights. Then the tree and all the decorations must be put up inside. Having all those cats around is a problem. They play with the decorations so I must spend all my time keeping them from breaking the decorations. We are going to decorate the animal cages this year. I said that they have to celebrate the holiday too. What hoilday traditions do you and Ellie observe? I will try to go to Christmas eve services this year.

Must run.

Samantha. aka The Snow Dog."

Samantha, we don't have any bathroom-style rules here - Master Craig has been trained not to care - we pretty much go wherever we want. In fact, I think that Master Craig prefers us to relieve ourselves often and in diverse areas - at least that's what we try to do. It sounds like your Mistress has a bit of a hang-up!

Ellie and I observe Christmas - it's one of the few occasions that we're allowed to go to Church - mainly because the carols service is held outside. This year Master Craig is in charge of the cooking of the sausages - I think that we'll get on just fine. I heard that there will be 20 kilograms of sausages - Ellie and I should be pretty satisfied!

"Bear and April at the keyboard. We got over a meter and a half during the second week of November. Chris our junior master did not have school for four days. Don our main master had to run the snow blower around the house so April could find a spot. I was able to leap like a dear through the snow. I did get stuck several times. In fact the snow was so deep by the ditch that my master Don had to help me get out. Every time we came into the house the cats would sniff us and say that it's nice inside. April thinks it's fun to watch Don chase me [Bear] through the deep snow since he can't run but I can. I wait until he gets near me then I leap and make him run. It's a fun winter sport. Except I get in trouble if I don't come when called the second or third time.

Have fun and write soon

Bear and April"

Master Craig seems to also have a bit of a thing for the "come" command - I don't understand it at all. I've always understood the "come" command as "wander over here when you're ready and in your own time".

Well, Mistress Liz will be home soon and I want Master Craig to complete this note before she arrives, so until the next time (hopefully next week if Mistress Liz doesn't find out).

My signature

Ellie Take me to the next diary entry or show me the complete calendar!

a very nice picture of me I'd be very happy if you'd sign Master Craig's visitors' book before you leave (he won't create one for me).

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