There are few things that can break my concentration when I’m up on a hill with my camera at sunrise, but Beanie is one of them, especially when she’s determined to liberate a little bundle of chicken from my pocket. Ordinarily Susan’s there to take charge of our pesky little Hobbits when the camera’s out, but this time she was back in the car at the bottom of the hill catching some extra sleep. It may have been the 3:30am departure that left her so tired, or it may have been the fact that she’d been doing a crazy amount of pullups all week (seriously, enough to impress some online ex-marine drill instructors !) but regardless, when it came to climb versus sleep, sleep won. Consequently at a time when most normal folk are still in bed, I found myself just below the summit of Ben Dubh with a big white Beagle bum stuck in my face (Biggles) and a very active Beagle snout stuck in my pocket (Beanie).
To be fair the two of them had been extraordinarily well behaved while we’d been climbing and scouting about the best shooting location (discounting the rather noisy moment that occurred when a parade of sheep and deer crossed our path). And when the sun actually started to pop up over the distant mountains, they were almost as mesmerized by it as I was.
However once the first two minutes of sunrise had passed, a bit of impatience started to creep in. Biggles decided that if he was going to be stuck up here in the cold, he’d have to make a bed for himself, which is unfortunate because he’s the world’s worst bed maker. He found a rough patch of grass, went round and round on it a couple of times and tried it out. Unsurprisingly it wasn’t comfy, so he drew back on his rear legs (shoving his bottom in my face) and pounced on it, thinking that would somehow make it more agreeable. It didn’t of course, but he persevered for a good minute longer, knocking into me and the camera tripod repeatedly until eventually he gave up and flopped on the grass making a disgruntled “harummfff”. Just when I thought I was finally clear to take a few more shots, I felt a tugging at my coat. Looking round to the source of the new disturbance, I discovered that my left pocket had apparently grown a pair of big floppy ginger ears. I had to extract Beanie and her ears from my pocket several times before I finally came up with the idea of tying her and Biggles to the fence a safe distance from me. While this enabled me to get a couple more shots, it wasn’t a popular decision and I received a number of verbal protests.
Yeah it’s nice
But we’ve seen it already and we’re bored!!!
Inevitably I gave in and broke out the chicken. This was scoffed in under 10 seconds, at which point I hooked the pups back up to my waist and we walked a little way round the side of the hill for a different view.
We hung around there for a few minutes during which time Biggles munched some snow and gave himself an ice-cream headache, and then we started on the long trudge back down. Quite near the bottom I saw another opportunity for some shots; the sun had been working on Loch Lomond for a while now and there was a layer of mist running over it.
Just as I was about to get moving again, Beanie suddenly spotted something on the path ahead of us. She became very animated, then broke into her welcoming dance. It was Susan, fresh from her nap and coming to meet us!
Beanie on the right performing her welcoming dance, which very closely resembles her biscuit dance, breakfast dance, tea dance etc.
Hi Mum! I’ve missed you so much!
But what’s in your pocketses??