Goblins to the beach

I took the goblins to the beach today. I chose Mouille Point because there’s very little chance of them being able to swim and get wet and sandy and salty – I can deal with one dirty wet dog but not 2, especially when the visiting goblin has bigger hair than a ’70s model. I also spurned the Promenade because visiting goblin has a tendency to attack tiny dogs. Being under 7kg himself, this is a bit of a cheek and I wasn’t prepared to deal with the wrath of the Sea Point blue-haired handbag-dog owners elite on such a lovely winter’s day.

They loved  it – it’s doggie heaven with masses of stinky stuff to roll in and bits of crayfish all over the place and tramps eating cheap snoek. They ran the place ragged, frightened off a smooching couple (how anyone can be scared of such small dogs is beyond me), scampered over the mountains of kelp, paddled in rock pools and just generally sniffed themselves silly. As if being together for such a long period of time (3 days now!)  hasn’t exhausted them already, they are now completely knackered and, as I type this, are passed out next to me.


Let sleeping dogs lie next to me. Mine is the black minx, the other is the visiting goblin and he’s all shiny because I’ve just brushed him. I call them goblins because that’s how they behave when together but their names are Vida (mine) and Bijou (visiting).

Mouille Point is the beach of my youth, I wrote about it here. I’ve mentioned it’s not a glam beach and gets a bit yucky but it has a special place in my heart and I was horrified to see the mess today. It is particularly full of large items of litter; not the usual bottle caps and minor stuff but big stuff like broken cooler-box lids, empty cardboard boxes, streams of plastic bags – in other words, not your usual beach picnic detritus that may have been dropped by accident or blown in, but blatant dumping. And chunks of cement no doubt left over from the recent repairs to the sea-wall. Most of this litter has clearly been there for a very long time.

I have lodged a formal complaint, in 140 characters – we’ll see what response I get. I’m hoping a general clean-up is in order soon because the seaweed also needs removing. It could be a lovely beach, it doesn’t have to be a forgotten poor cousin – there are some very expensive apartment blocks over the road and the rock pools make it a fun beach for children. And dogs.

My photos don’t show the full extent of the litter but here they are anyway – you get the picture.

mouille point beach 2 mouillepoint beach 1

UPDATE: I’ve already had a response to my Tweet to Bev Schafer, the Ward Councillor for the Atlantic Seaboard. Apparently that beach is under some sort of protection, being a non-nodal beach, and kelp cannot be removed. She will attend to the litter but the job of removing items entangled in the kelp is another story as it’s more difficult. Watch this space because I am thinking of maybe organising some sort of citizens’ clean-up. I’ll look into that, and find out what a non-nodal beach is.

Guest blog by Princess Vida


With my boyfriend Bijou on Hout Bay beach last week


Look how he’s chasing me – half my size and twice as dangerous!

I haven’t had internet access for ages so I can’t update Facebook but mom said I can guest blog to make up for it.   I’ll use the opportunity to tell you how to make humans happy. It’s not really difficult because they’re very simple and loyal creatures, most of the time, and it doesn’t take much to please them.

  1. Every now and then, especially if I feel neglected, I sit dead still close to my mom and just stare at her. When she eventually looks my way and says “What?” I don’t move an inch, just sit, not even a blink. This rattles her no end and eventually she puts down what she’s doing and I get a big love or something to chew on.
  2. Let them rub your tummy, they love this and it certainly doesn’t hurt.
  3. I can’t stress strongly enough the importance of nuzzling and cuddling. Humans need a lot of this and a few minutes go a long way. When my human is watching tv and typing at the same time I creep up close and shove my nose under her arm. She makes loads of typos and eventually says “Look how she wants to cuddle”, puts the laptop down and starts kissing or something, at that point I move away. She picks up the laptop again and I creep closer again… this can go on for hours and guarantees non-stop attention.
  4. When you need a pee and the door is shut, don’t bark and jump at the door – that’s too easy. Sit near the door, wiggle on your bum and wait. After a few minutes of being totally ignored you can let out a very low whine and wiggle your bum again. At some point your human will jump up and open the door very fast. Humans are not generally scared of us peeing indoors but a number 2 on the carpet is their biggest fear.
  5. And speaking of poop. My mom’s got a lot of gravel outside and I’m not mad about it because it’s not comfortable to lie on. My solution? I no longer poop in the driveway where it’s easy for her to pick up. I now poop on the gravel so that when she removes the poop, there are always several bits of gravel stuck to it. I’ve calculated that in about 4 years there won’t be a single piece of gravel left. I’ve even stopped pooping on the pennyroyal ground cover – it’s all mostly dead anyway.
  6. The Circuit of Happiness – I’ve outgrown this but it gives my mom pleasure so I will keep it up as long as I can. The way it works is this: when she comes home, after I’ve whined and jumped up and down outside, I show her how happy I am to see her by running in a loop from the front door onto one couch and from that one I jump straight across the other one, then back to the front door and to the first couch and so on. She stands there hosing herself for a few minutes, then rushes to the toilet. I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to be able to give her so much pleasure. The number of circuits I complete is directly proportionate to how long she’s been out, so a quick nip to the shops might only be 3 circuits but when she’s been out all day I run myself ragged.

Stuff I don’t like:

  1. I don’t see the joke in referring to my back legs as “Korean take-aways”.
  2. Threats to return me to the SPCA for a refund every time I get dirty.
  3. Constant cookie inspections for fleas. She never finds any but still she looks obsessively.
  4. Braais where they sit and gnaw at bones and I get nothing and apparently it’s for my own sake. Puh-lease.
  5. That long snaky thing in the garden that she’s been using to wash me this summer. Bring on winter and warm baths.
  6. Being left alone. Like tonight – there’s a big party on at my boyfriend’s house and I’m not allowed. I don’t understand why Tonton Philippe doesn’t want me and BJ playing and wrestling and running around his house at his birthday party. The 40+ guests would love to see how we play. BJ even went to the parlour for this party and I get to sit at home alone.

My mom thinks this is a very cute pose of mine and Tonton thinks he’s training us. BJ got filthy that day and Tonton was furious! I never get very dirty because I’m a girl.


Me, my boyfriend and Tonton – man, we OWNED the beach that day! (Afterwards we had calamari!)


A note to all accidental visitors:

I am not a photographer and do not claim to have any particular skills whatsoever in that department. I have enormous respect for those who can see the potential in a scene and can create a great photo. Good photography is an art, in my opinion.

I am just a happy snapper, I have no special lenses or accessories, my camera is very simple and it's usually best to leave the setting on auto.

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