One of our favourite places to visit is Ferry Meadows on the outskirts of Peterborough. We go there so much that Mum ought to get a parking season ticket to save money! We love it because there is so much to do, whatever your interests may be. With acres and acres to run free in, a permanent agility course for athletic dogs, some huge lakes, a nature reserve and a little mini-railway, it really is wonderful. Add to that, some boat trips, children's play areas and the best soft ice cream in the universe what's not to like? Everything is signposted, so it shouldn't be possible to get lost!
Just when we thought things couldn't get better there, at the weekend they were staging a Chrsitmas Fair. It was wonderful! There were special areas for children, who could sit around to listen to a story teller, a massive bear, and not a few elves!
Photographs: Ferry Meadows
As soon as we arrived, Mum started singing! Oh no! The Peterborough Salvation Army Band were there and she couldn't resist joining in with "Starry Night." Thank goodness she sang softly so that people didn't think she had lost it. The weather was bright but bitterly cold, so we were glad to see they had the shelter of a huge gazebo.
There were crowds of people about, and not a few dogs all behaving beautifully. Thankfully most had coats on, although one young poodle was rushing around so much we thought he was lost. Finally, he rushed up to some people and Mum checked he bleonged to them. Yes he did! He was just so excited to be there! Well, that saved us the job of finding his family.
Since Dolly is older, we took the stroller and set off for our walk. I was put on a lead because I like to run along the railway track, but as the train was running it was not wise this time.
En route to the Craft Marquee, we came across loads of dogs, but none more delightful that little Bailey, a 7 month old chocolate mini-smooth haired Dachshund. Mum made a huge fuss of him, and wanted to bring him home! Imagine her joy, and ours too, when we found him with his people selling dog toys and other stuff in the marquee. I think you will agree that he is a little smasher!
Of all the paths we could have taken, Mum decided we would walk round the smaller of three lakes. Dolly and I obediently followed, but not for long! "Not in this cold weather" I woofed. Dolly hopped into the stroller, and I think the message got through, but just in case it didn't I turned around and made a detrmined dash back to the visitor centre. Mum obediently followed. You have to train these humans, you know!
I am not so sure the 'about turn' was such a thrill for Dolly, who was now walking again, but suddenly veered away from the path, glancing sideways somewhat fearfully. Uh oh! There it stood! A grooming van! Worryingly, Mum headed straight to the van, and spoke to the lovely Clare Roberts of Petface Parlour. We earwigged as Mum explained that little Dolly does not like having her nails clipped, and then Clare offered to try to do them! Dolly was not impressed when she was put on the grooming table and her back paw claws were attacked by the clippers! Mum held her tight, and despite it all being pain free, Dolly could not resist a pathetic fear whimper from time to time. Eventually, she emerged triumphantly, probably with the smartest paws at Ferry meadows that day.
By now, the band had left to play carols in a local shopping mal, but were replaced by a childrens choir. They sang sweetly, and the music marquee was surrounded by loads of people listening to them.
After a bit of lunch, Mum decided we should go home out of the cold. Being a hardy soul I was verywarm, and Dolly was so well wrapped up it was impossible for her to feel chilly! As for Mum, who knows!
After such an exciting day, we were none the less happy to get home and have a good sleep, so we could dream about our next visit to Ferry Meadows.
Editor, The Daxington Post
27th November 2017