Another of the ‘holiday list’ things on our staycation was to go to the seaside.
We wanted to do so for a couple of reasons. a) we are on holiday and that’s what you do when your on holiday and b) we wanted to take Rio to the beach to let him experience the sand and sea.
We decided that a trip to Hunstanton, on the North Norfolk coast would be ideal distance to travel with the dog as apart from when he was brought home as a puppy, it would be the longest car journey he’d undertaken.
We checked the weather forecast and although not too promising, we set off yesterday morning after packing a picnic and bits for Rio (dog chews, water, food bowl, a bone, dog leads). The clouds were gathering, suggesting we were in for a wet day, but at least it would be a day trip away from home.
At first Rio got a bit restless but soon settled down for the journey ahead. Within twenty minutes we were halting at Peterborough for a wee stop, but not for the dog but for Tina, who breakfast cuppa had gone through her system. I walked Rio for five minutes then we set off again once Tina had returned, bladder empty again.
We then headed towards Wisbech, before stopping again on the hour mark for some fuel and another wee stop (both Tina and I this time), whereas Rio refused to go. We set off towards Kings Lynn before spotting signs for Hunstanton and by midday we were arriving. Fortunately as we approached the seaside resort the clouds cleared to reveal a beautiful blue sky, with temperatures at a pleasant low twenties Celsius.
I had checked out the dog friendly beaches around and noted that we were OK to go to Old Hunstanton beach to the north of the main town. We parked on the cliff top car park and headed towards the beach. It was this point Rio became very excited, he seems to sense that this was place he was going to enjoy and it was hard to hold him back from getting to the expanse of sand.
The beach was not too crowded and so we found a spot near to the sea and I immediately took him down to the waters edge. As he’s not great off-lead I kept him secured for a short while only letting him off when the coast was clear, so to speak. He took his first tentative steps in the water and was soon splashing around chasing the waves. As there were other dogs on the beach I decided that his freedom off-lead had to be short lived and managed to get him back to stop him from running off. We walked back to Tina, where Rio immediately started digging.
It is clear that Rio has digging tendencies and for the next ten minutes that’s all he wanted to do, dig holes. We then took him back to the sea for more frolicking in the water before deciding that eating a picnic with a dog spraying sand around was not a good idea so walked back to the car and ate our lunch there whilst Rio could shelter in the shadow cast by the car.
After lunch we strolled towards the main town, stopping for an ice cream along the way. It was good to see the place was ‘dog friendly’ with most cafe’s leaving a bowl of water for canine refreshment. There was also lots of dog poo bins strategically placed along the way, clearly the council were determined to make it as easy as possible for dog owners to be responsible and pick up their pooches waste products. And they were definitely needed for Rio as soon the salty water went through him, giving him the runs, which is not the easiest of things to gather up using the poo bags we use.
Once Rio had done his business, we had a bit of a wander along the promenade (which didn’t take long if you have ever been to Hunstanton), had a sit down in the shade for a while and then turned around and headed back towards the car. By this time the clouds were drawing in and we could see that it wouldn’t be long before the rain arrived.
We agreed to drive home, this time not needing to stop. As we arrived back at Thrapston, the rain arrived with a heavy downpour.
It was clear that the day had worn Rio out so we agreed we would skip his ‘Disobedience’ class and as it happened he slept for most of the evening, probably dreaming about this wonderful place where he could did and dig and dig. Let’s hope he doesn’t try re-enacting it back in the garden again.