We are still getting over it. It happened last week-end during the May day celebrations. Why this is held in October here in NSW, Australia, might be better explained by those better versed in Anglo Saxon anomalies than I. I remember years ago wondering why a penny was denoted by the letter ‘d’ and not by a ‘p’. Even worse, we have yearly Edinburgh ‘tattoo’ on TV. Why ‘tattoo’, when it could be called festival, musical, or even carnival? May day in October probably adheres to similar laws of incomprehensible logic, so esoteric, that only fools would question them. 😉
Anyway, we decided to go to the coast and have Fish & Chips together with our incorrigible JR Terrier ‘Milo’. It would be nice to let him smell the seagulls and salty ocean spray. You know the image, a beige man throwing bits of drift wood into the ocean and a dog wildly braving the waves retrieving the stick while the wife stands back, takes pleasure in viewing both husband and dog. Domestic symbiotic bliss on a long week-end.
After both husband and dog had expired enough energy, it was decided to look for a suitable cafeteria with chairs and shade umbrellas. We soon found one along the strip of shops that are so identifiable with almost all developments in Australia. The road goes through most shopping strips and as the towns developed so would the suburbs neatly arrange themselves around the shops and business premises. The place we visited was Kiama. After having ordered the Fish & Chips we sat down and so did Milo. Now Milo is a dog that behaves perfectly. He does his ‘business’ well away from were people walk. Amazing, because we never trained him. He will settle down underneath bushes or in leaf mulch under a large tree. Afterwards he even buries it and looks at me for ‘you’re a good boy, Milo’ statement.
The one departure from his well behaved deportment is his hatred for motor-bikes. He has a thing about motor-bikes and their riders. Show him a motor bike in situ, he is an angel. It is only when rider and bike are combined in noise and a forward motion that he goes berserk. We have tried to reason with him. Tried rewarding him, punishing, smacking with newspapers, withholding his chicken-neck dinner. All the usual pedagogic tricks of parenting and upbringing. Nothing works. In Bowral where we live, it is just the occasional motor bike. No worries. People look up a bit and smile. He is just a rascal, they seem to imply. In any case we try and avoid roads and motor bikes, walk along a flowing little river. He barks a bit at ducks, but who wouldn’t?
Kiama seems to be occupied during May-Day (in October) with motor bike riders. Lots of them. Many bull-necked heavily tattooed riders and equally tattooed bull-breasted girlfriends akimbo on Harleys, Triumphs, and Hondas. Fat wheels everywhere, roaring, spitting fire. Milo went mad. I am personally very fond of motor bikes and often reflect on my own motor bike days, I had an ex-police Triumph with sidecar. I was never bull-necked. No-one was in those days. Nor did I tattoo myself. No serpents around my biceps or lecherous, leering ladies on my chest.
Needless to say, the Fish & Chips underneath the umbrella was ruined. As mentioned, Kiama was full of motor bikes and riders. There must be a club somewhere. There would be a motor-bike every five seconds. Milo hurtling himself forward dragging tables and chairs with him. A few Japanese tourist girls escaped the fury, left the café looking back and down to Milo who was besides himself, foaming at the mouth. We were tempted to let him go and then pretend he belonged to someone else. Instead we dragged him back to the car and drove home in utter silence. He had ruined our day. “Disgraceful dog”, “you’re disgraceful”.
Milo just rested his head on his front paws. He felt fine.