Saturday, March 13, 2010

March 13th 2004. 7.45 am.

It's six years ago to the day since these pictures of Wilf and Digby were taken on the beach in Scotland . They were the first photos taken on the camera phone and somehow they managed to capture an immediacy and intimacy that was impossible to get with the heavy old Leica. The two boyz are looking remarkably lean after a trip to the groomers for what turned out to be a rather teutonic haircut. People thought they were Scotties ! In 2004 they were just two weeks shy of their third birthday and were a constant blur of high octane investigation and activity. Everything at that tender age was a source of captivating wonder, excitement and amazement. Crabs in rock pools, puffins on the cliff tops, drift wood in the dunes.

Digby didn't yet know what a camera was and would unconcernedly stare into the lens. He has since developed a canine sense , shared with Afghan hill villagers, that having his photograph taken will somehow imprison his soul. He now turns away from me the second the phone is produced. Since the first experiment six years ago all the photos posted on the blogs have been taken using the camera in the original mobile handset or its much improved successors.

Looking at these scenes brings back memories of just how beautiful Scotland is - a combination of Alaska and Norway with a special northern light . Our old house was surrounded by sea on three sides and every morning before breakfast the two boyz used to rush across the fields and down to the shoreline to watch the sun rise, all the while howling at the waves and frantically chasing gulls. Digby once came across a large family of seals . They were quite unperturbed by his presence but Digby came racing back across the sand for reassurance. An early lesson never to get too far away from the family.

Looking at the photos is a reminder to me just how quickly time moves on and what great companions Wilf and Digby have been in our journey through Europe and life. Their great gift to us has been, and is, constant laughter. The beach has gone but croissants, lizard chasing , soft breezes and warm weather have taken its place.


  1. Hey there Angus
    I detect advancing nostalgia! Must be the change of the seasons! Those old photos are exquisite...the lighting unique and the boyz beautiful!
    As for photographs...we have cultures here too who believe that the soul is imprisoned with a photo...perhaps the boyz have some African heritage afterall ! :)
    Also...thank you for the Moliere education! I am but a simple person...and you help!

  2. That's a nice touch of nostalgia, and the pictures are wonderful! They should be in a calendar somewhere. Isn't it funny how quickly the transition from puppies to old dogs happens?

    I know just what you mean about the soul stealing cameras, too! Hawk was the exact same way!

  3. Scotties, huh? Pffft. Obviously the people in question were dogless and clueless! Maybe they were tourists and thought all dogs in Scotland were Scotties? Kinda like all nose tissues are Kleenex? All refrigerators are Frigidaires?

    The boyz certainly look cute in puppy cuts, is that what they are getting this spring?

    Bonnie, the 'not so' wee Scottie

  4. Oh Angus. I know Italy and France are divine, but how on earth could you leave Scotland. Yes, I know ... it's the weather, isn't it? And it's quite true that I have never spent a winter there. But it grabbed my heart on my very first visit, and has yet to give it back.

    And you are so right about your delightful boys. The gift of constant laughter. I know just what you mean. Just wait till I post new photographs of Apple in her ice blue traveling goggles! A necessity, since she adores hanging her head out the car window so very much.

    Happy weekend!

  5. Max - You're 100% right about advancing nostalgia. Can it really be nearly five and a half years since we started our journey? Dogs more than anything or anyone else remind you how quickly time passes. From puppyhood to maturity in no time at all!

    Houndstooth - Soul stealing must be something very elemental. You're spot on about how quickly they grow up and mature.

    Scraps - No, they won't be getting anything that severe. If you're going to have a shaggy dog then it might as well be shaggy.