photo by mjd, click here for more
Last weekend we decided to take Chocolate for her very first holiday. It wasn't easy to find a holiday place around Jakarta that accepts pets. I called many hotels and resorts in Anyer-Carita area, Puncak and Bogor to check which would accept a well behaved (ok I lied a bit) little puppy. None. Luckily a friend directed us to a simple villa on the beach in Anyer. Perfect. But it's a very simple one, she said. I don't care. We are ready to take anything as long as Chocolate can have her holiday. Besides the villa has a beach front - perfect. We can find out if Chocolate loves sea water as much as she loves the pool at home.
The car journey that Saturday morning took a total of 4 hours because of the traffic jam. But we managed to stop twice on the way to let Chocolate out for a bit of a walk and a pee. No pee. Chocolate was too excited, sniffing everything, to think about peeing. Originally we put her in the back seat but of course she climbed to the front where we sit. So I took her on my lap. She was quiet, maybe a bit nauseous? But she didn't vomit, only hid her head in my arm once in a while.
As soon as we got out of the car I walked her to the beach. At first she sniffed the sea suspiciously and when a little wave washed over her feet she was startled but then her eyes sparkled and she ran, dragging me into the water. She jumped on the waves and then... swam. She did that over and over again. I thought of taking off her leash but the way she dragged me to the deeper water worried me a bit. What if she swam too far away? Plus the villa has a large yard and the gate was kept open. Chocolate is not a trained dog - she'd run to sniff everything and she won't come to our call. Outside the gate is the main road with lots of traffic. No way. So we decided to keep the leash on.
That afternoon was hot and humid but of course Chocolate didn't care and I had to play with her under the sun in the sea, as she jumped here and there and swam and ran. There's no doubt - she loves the sea.
However in the next morning when we took her out of the house to the sea again she didn't seem to enjoy it as much. She preferred to sniff the trash brought by last night's high tide in the beach. The sea was choppy. It was a cloudy morning, very breezy and the water quite cold. Hmmm... could it be the cold water which make her reluctant to get into the water? Chocolate is never one to be afraid of water. She jumps into the pool at home regularly, although only to the shallow part. She'd swim in the pool if she had to but not happily. Is it because the water in the pool so cold? Like that morning in the beach? Or was it the big wave which put her off? Maybe.
Whatever it was, later on in the afternoon when the sun came out and the water got warm and waves calmer, again she ran and jumped over the small waves and swam happily in the sea. Of course as parents we watched her proudly. Our water baby!
photo by koeniel click here for more
The beach offers a lot of other exciting stuff too for Chocolate. She's not normally a digger eventhough a lot of daschund breed are diggers. At home she leaves the garden alone, thankfully. But out on the beach she happily dug out the sand chasing little crabs, digging for treasures (old sandals, egg shells, bottles and all sorts of trash you usually find in the sand in a beach) and digging for a cool wet sandy den for her to relax.
Every now and then I had to wrench some dangerous looking stuff out of her jaw. True to her nature as a daschund she loves trash. The trash bin is like a cave full of treasures for her. So was the beach. Chocolate had a whale of a time.
The People and The Goat
Chocolate has been leading a very sheltered life. She lives in a high walled garden, and only now and then goes beyond the gate when we take her out for a walk in the neighbourhood or when she visits the vet. We took her out to the pier in Ancol once, but that's about it.
The only people Chocolate know are us and the people working in the house (maid, driver, guard, gardener... yeah, the whole crew) plus another handfull which consists of her vet, the pet shop workers, a friend and my family.
Out there on the beach suddenly she saw a whole bunch of new faces - people and children playing on the beach, the hawkers and a goat. Suddenly her guard dog instinct was awaken and she barked hard at any who dared to come near our little cottage.
Ever since we came back from the holiday she has been more alert and she'd bark at strangers who dare to invade her kingdom.
photo by koeniel click here for more
A Whole New Experience
It must be quite confusing for our little Chocolate; suddenly her brain was flooded with signals from new sights, new smells and new sounds. She acted like a little child experiencing new things. She didn't want to sleep, refused to sit down quietly and never want to miss a thing, even when she was obviously knackered.
She obviously enjoyed her whole new experience and already we are thinking of other places we could take to, provided they'll take a well behaved (not really) little dog.