Vale Ari

We had to put Ari down this afternoon.

He was suffering from paralysed nerves in his larynx which made breathing for him very difficult. He overheated at the dog groomers yesterday, collapsed with a panic attack, and had to be rushed to the Mt Barker Veterinary Clinic to be sedated.

Today he could barely walk up our drive. He was very weak and he could not balance on the tiles in the laundry–his back legs just slide underneath him and he would lie spreadeagled on the floor unable to get up. He was a month shy of being 16 years old. He lived a full life with lots of walks.

This is one of the last photos that I took of Ari. It was in autumn in 2017 on an early morning poodlewalk along Encounter Bay. The photo is from this session in March:

Ari, Encounter Bay

I didn’t take any more after this.

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between the rains

Recently we had a couple of fine days between the winter rains and the stormy conditions. I’d recovered enough from the flu to be able to take advantage of the fine weather to go exploring with Kayla and Maleko along the coastal rocks between Petrel Cove and Kings Head on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. This was on the late afternoon walk and I was well enough to take my digital camera to take some snaps and even to do a few scoping studies.

One such snap:

Kayla + Maleko

This abstract is an example of what I was scoping for my film cameras when I had more strength.
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about the moment

I’m starting to slowly realize that the snapshot style photography that I do whilst I am on the poodle walks is about the moment. They are photos of fleeting moments that cannot be rephotographed:

Kayla, Halls Creek Rd

They are also about nothing much. Just everyday scenes that I am walking through, or walking past and that I wouldn’t pay much attention to, if I didn’t have a camera and we weren’t hanging about. It is through the ‘hanging about’ that I start to see the little things around me that I wouldn’t normally notice.
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Ari is going on 16 years of age and he has slowed down a lot. His hearing and sight are limited, he has dementia,  and he  is wobbly on his back legs.  The course of acupuncture is keeping him going as is the companionship with the younger poodles.

The morning walks have decreased in terms of the time spent we spend walking. We walk slowly along the road down to the beach, shuffling along as it were.

Ari, am, Encounter Bay

The autumn mornings before sunrise are a great time to be walking. It is soft and gentle time. There a few walkers, runners and bikers but it is pretty quiet. So we can meander and hang out amongst the rocks along the beach . We are able to just enjoy the moments together and he still enjoys having his photo taken.

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at Currency Creek

We all went for a walk at Currency Creek on the previous long weekend–Adelaide Cup Day. I hadn’t been there for ages–several years in fact. The photography that I did then was rather disappointing, and I hadn’t been all that keen on returning. This was a family outing:

Currency Creek
Currency Creek

On previous visits we have had the place to ourselves. Not this time. It was packed. People were camping in the picnic ground that is opposite the historic Kingsbrook estate. There are now a lot more people touring around and visiting the Fleurieu Peninsula these days.

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in Melbourne

Ari came with us on the trip to Melbourne. Malek and Kayla, our other two standard poodles, stayed in the home of a dog minder at Victor Harbor. The arrangement worked quite well.

We stayed overnight at Old Dadswell Town on the way over to Melbourne and we all wandered around exploring the place in the late afternoon and the early morning:

Ari, Old  Dadswell Town
Ari, Old Dadswell Town

We stayed at Safety Beach on the Mornington Peninsula whilst we were in Melbourne. During the day Ari stayed at Safety Beach with my sister whilst I went photographing in Melbourne.

Ari and I went for our morning and evening walks together around the Martha Cove marina and around the golf course at Safety Beach:

pond, Safety Beach, Melbourne
pond, Safety Beach, Melbourne

A lot of money is being invested in house, boat and cars in this part of the Mornington Peninsula.

early summer morning walks

The Fleurieuscapes exhibition at Magpie Springs opened on Sunday 17th January.We had a picnic lunch in the grounds of Magpie Springs with friends before the exhibition opening. A good crowd was in attendance for the opening and the atmosphere was convivial and summery. However, as I don’t expect to sell much work from the exhibition, I will be paying off my photography master card for most of this year.

Kayla, Heysen Trail
Kayla, Heysen Trail

Whilst preparing for the exhibition Kayla and Ari and I walked along the Heysen Trail in the morning to avoid the crowds on the beach. Then Ari and Maleko and I walked along the beach in the afternoon. We stayed away from the Heysen trail in the late afternoon because of the prevalence of the black snakes.
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amongst the coastal rocks

Kayla, Ari and myself were returning to the Mazda after an early morning photoshoot–a rockpool— along the coast near Kings Beach Rd. A photoshoot was a break from being more or less sitting in a front of a computer working on the Fleurieuscapes exhibition at Magpie Springs. The opening is on Sunday January 17th.

The tide was low and it was overcast so I could access some of the coast that was not possible during the winter. I had explored this part of the coast whilst on a poodlewalk yesterday morning and I decided to go back this morning, if there was some cloud cover.

2 poodles
2 poodles

People are still on their holidays along the southern coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula, so there are plenty of runners, walkers, trail-bikers and dog walkers on the coastal path between Petrel Cove and Kings Beach in the early morning. It is still cool at this time of the day and, as the coastal winds have eased, it is pleasant walking. Continue reading “amongst the coastal rocks”

picking up the threads

Suzanne returned home last Friday from her 9 day walk on the Larapinta Trail plus some sightseeing at Kings Canyon, then Uluru and Kata Tjuta. She has a a few days at home in Victor Harbor, then she is off to a 4 day Heysen Trail camp at Deep Creek Conservation Park over the weekend.

I’m starting to pick up the threads of my photography which dropped away whilst Suzanne was in the Northern Territory. I have done little scoping of photography shoots during that period:

Maleko, Hayborough railway line
Maleko, Hayborough railway line

Most of my effort at the moment is devoted to preparing for the abstraction exhibition at the Light Gallery during the SALA Festival in August, which includes a SALA portfolio.
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along an old railway line

I’ve accepted the constraints of walking three standard poodles on my own whilst Suzanne walks the Larapinta Trail, and I just go with the flow. It is easier to go with the flow rather than be frustrated by the chaos.

Our early morning walks are along the old Victor Harbor railway line in Hayborough. Maleko and Kayla can play their crazy chasey games in and around the old Port Elliot-Victor Harbor railway line, Ari and I stroll along, my feet stay dry, and I can take a few photos.

railway line, Hayborough
railway line, Hayborough

It’s better than the beach, which is where everyone is walking in the early morning with their dogs. If I walk on the beach most of my time is spend minding the dogs and preventing them from getting up to mischief with other dogs and people.
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