May 2017


When I look around me right now, I can see four dogs, all fast asleep inside with me on a dreary cloudy day, yes another one, with more to come. It’s Autumn, and these kind of days are common in the lead up to Winter …

When I look outside though, it’s quite a different story. The orange flowering shrub I always forget the name of has an amazing display of orange flowers, with a cascade of blossoms falling from the shrub as the birds poke their beaks into the orange trumpets! It’s a Cape something, something bush …

Anyway, I’ve going to head outside again soon and spend some time with this wide awake garden. We have strawberries growing in hanging pots just near the back door, and I want to check to see if there are going to be any more of the lovely berries again soon. Then I’ll go a little further and check on how our capsicums are going. I’m not expecting much, they do better when they get more sunshine …

This rain we’ve had has been good though, good for the plants we want, good for the plants we’re planning to plant out, but of course it’s good for the plants we don’t want. Weeds are the burden you get when you have a garden though, and I’d rather have a garden with some weeds than have no garden at all.

And now some of the dogs are awake and demanding to be let out into the garden again … They’re responsible for keeping that safe too, warning off invaders – rabbits, reptiles, and so on … It really is a tough life for them, haha!

I’ve been out to the garden now, and back inside again, after sampling the ripest of our strawberries. And by ‘sampling’ I mean biting into the sweet red/pink flesh and eating it. Ripe strawberries picked and eaten straight from the plant are delicious!cape honeysuckle

I’ve done some research now, and the plant with the orange flowers is actually Tecoma Capensis, or Cape Honeysuckle. It isn’t an Australian plant, but it does well in temperate areas, such as where we live. The native birds, particularly New Holland Honeyeaters certainly sucking the ‘honey’ from those flowers!

I love this plant, and the glorious blooms, yet another great thing to see in our garden! Do you have things is your garden to love to look at? I’d love to read about it, why not leave a comment?!

 

I have almost finished the book three in the Buster the Dog series, that began years ago with “Dig It! Gardening Tips for Dogs” and continued a few years ago with “Doggone It – Mindfulness from a Dogs Point of View”. The main text of book three – “Dog Buddha’s Thoughts” is more or less finished, the Foreword is being worked on, and tomorrow I am meeting with the illustrator, Allyson Hean to give her draft copy of the text …

I’m getting excited, that’s for sure. This book has many more words than the earlier too, and it is a much more serious book, with fewer illustrations to reinforce the serious nature of it! Haha, it’s written by the dog that I say lives inside my head, how serious can such a book actually be?!!! Buster the Dog and I have had a wonderful time, playing with this book, coming up with thoughts and extrapolating on the implications of such thoughts.

I spoke with the illustrator this morning, to organise a meeting, and it looks she is now thinking on the matter of what the Dog Buddha actually looks like. He won’t look like Buster the Dog, he will be a wise looking entity though. Ally mentioned a Newfoundland, which I feel would certainly be a suitable dog breed to consider.

These issues are so much more fun than the more serious issue of how I am going to actually pay for and then market this book. That’s one of the reasons I’m posting this on this blogsite – If you’d like to have a copy of the book when it comes out, why not let me know, by leaving me a comment here?

I’ve loved writing this book, and I’m going to love talking about this book too. If you’d like to know more about this project, feel free to ask me questions! As a bit of a teaser, here are a couple of the Dog Buddha’s thoughts, and Buster the Dog’s ideas about them:

“The unkempt lawn gives the best back rubs …”

‘There’s nothing better on a sunny day than to be outside on the lawn, rolling and rolling on the grass. And the best kind of lawn, the lawn that feels the best on your back, is not a perfect just-mown lawn, oh no. As the Dog Buddha says, the best lawn is the unkempt lawn, the lawn with lumps and bumps that knead your back like the best massage ever!’

“The sofa isn’t there for a reason. The sofa simply is …”

‘A dog, a sofa … there isn’t really much more to say, is there? Humans say they love their dogs, they have these big soft beds they call ‘sofas’ and then they tell us we aren’t allowed to actually get on them! Really? Surely, if you truly do love your dog, like you say you do, human, of course the sofa is there for us to jump up on!’

These are just snippets, the book goes into far more detail than this for each of the thoughts. I did a bit of a count, and it appears there are over 35 thoughts, all deep and meaningful, haha! I’m hoping for big things from this book! I plan to launch “Dog Buddha’s Thoughts” at the Adelaide Plains Festival of Words (Freedom) 2017 on July 29 at the P/A Hotel in Gawler, South Australia.