Lots of snow did land on Atlantis so dey did stay safely tucked away inside da boat wif da heatin on full blast. Now, this might sound lovely and cozy but when you got a boat her size wif no insulation, da walls run with condensation when da heat is on and when it is off dey gets ice on dem, on the inside!
Atlantis had no insulation at dat time; she has now though you better believe it ;)). During the really really cold times, dey av to leave da heat on all night else they wake up with frozen faces. The temperature dropped to bout minus 2 when the boiler was avin some problems. But dad being dad, would get up in da freezin cold early mornins and start da boiler again before he would let mum get up. Dey also used to put on da gas cooker in da kitchen and a friend told them bout puttin a large upturned plant pot (wot is made of clay) on da stove to warm da room up. It did work quite well. These drums has da diesel in wot has to be pumped:
Around bout dis time (which was bout February of the 2005 year) I was living at ma first ome. I had been given to a family as a Christmas present by their nan and I was livin wif da family who had three small boys. Dese boys was bit rough on da Lexie puppy so I spend lots of time hidin. There do be lots of shoutin at da Lexie and da only place I feel safe is under da sofa. Dey decide to pull me out from under da sofa one day and dey manage to pull me so hard they pull ma legsies out of they sockets. I ad to go to da vet and had operation on ma legs and pelvis.
When I come back home they fink is fun to tread on my little pawsies and manage to break ma toesies this time. I has to have ma feet bound up and vet say I won't ever be able to walk far and may have brittle bones. After all dat the boys was not interested in me no more and da lady who woz they mum got fed up cleanin up after me. (They never bovva house training me or gettin me jabs so I can go out). She go mad bout me and say they gotta get rids of me - she want to av me put to sleep or put in sack and drownded. I was only 5 munfs old den.
The boys dad wot did not live wif dem say dat he take the doggie becoz of da boys beggin him not to av da Lexie put down. He take me to his home so I start ma life in da new place! Dis funny place like noffink I ever seen before. They is not got houses there, they is livin on floatin fings wot is called boats I find out.
The man wot take me in was fireman and he did spend lots of time away from da boat at da fire station. I realise I gonna be spendin lots of time alone locked up in da boat. Dis man not take me for walks or take me to da vet or nuffink. I get lots of bowls of dog food to last me as long as they can while he at da fire station.
Dis man is nice to me most of da time exceptin when I dus bad fing wot is go to the toilet inside da boat. Fing is da man dus not understand dat I as no choice bout it. When I first go live wif him he put paper down so I go on dat. He say good dog and fings like dat so I fink is ok.
When he paintin his boat in da bedroom downstairs one day he put down paper so it not splash on da floor. When he go to work I see there is no paper for me no more but I members there is paper in da bedroom. I go down there and do ma poo and wee on it. When da man come home he bery angry wif da Lexie and he give me 'beat down'. Dat wot he call it. He hit me wif his shoe but I dussnt know wot dis be about!
I dussnt like it on da boat is dark and cold and scary. I as no-one to play wif and I feels so lonely. I cant elps it but I whine an cry a lot. There is some people wot live around who complain to the man bout my cryin. I try to stop. Maybe if I is a good doggie da man will like me some more.
While all dis happenin mum and dad be busy on their boat doin their next big job! Removing da wooden deck. The deck is made of ironwood, very thick wood which is good at absorbin up da salt water. Was perfect for fishermens not so good for your future gin palace! Here's a picture of dem taking up da deck:
In da background on the right you can see the boat wot I live on; the grey one wif da red paint on it.
One day, I see da man talkin to some people wot I saw on anova boat near to me. They is man and woman. He tellin them how he took me in but dat I is bad doggie. I hear lady say to dis man bout bringin me over to meet dem so they can say hello. So da man come and get me and take me to them. I as to be carried to them coz is dangerous for little doggies to climb and jump.
The woman grab me off da man and cuddle me up really tight to her. She even gives me some little kisses on ma head. How funny! She doesn't even know who I am and dat I is bad doggie. She dussnt even seem to care bout dat. We go inside their boat and the lady put me on her lap and cuddle and strokes me all night long! Is lovely. I fink I am gonna like dis lady. The man of dis boat gives me some tickles as well! Oh I like them, they smell nice and they as not shouted at me!
Da man take me back to the other boat and I look over his shoulder as we leave at the new people wot I just met. Dey look nice I fink I like dem a lot. Maybe I will see them again.
Next day da man go to work and leave me on ma own again. He dussnt put food down for me and I fink he must of forgotten. I fink oh well I just conserve ma energy and lay down. It will be all right. Bit later, I hear the door open on da boat. Oh no, maybe da man come back to tell me off! Maybe I hide under the table. Is not man! Is lady from last night! She callin ma name and her voice all softy softy and loving. I go to her and she stroke me. She give me a little kissy again!
Now she is liftin me up and carry me out da door and guess what? She tell me I am gonna stay wif her and da man for a little while. When I gets on their boat the lady put me down and we go on little exploration. I look around and sniffin fings. Da man come up to me and say hello. He tickly me on the chin and rub ma head. He smell nice.
Lady take me inside and there be a basket wif nice blanket dat she say is for me. Dere be some toys to play wif and a ball and some rope to tug. They also have got me some food and treats. I dussnt know but I stay wif dem for four days til the man come back. Mum and dad manage to persuade dis man dat he cannot leave me alone for days on end and they say they will look after me while he not there! In the end he agree, dad is good at persuadin I later finds dat out! I also find out they fall in love wif me da moment they see me! I fink I did fall in love wif dem too but I was too scared to even fink it. I dussnt knows it but soon dis will be ma forever ome!
Over da next few munfs mum and dad (to be! heehee) keep workin on da boat wif lots of fings they as given demselfs to do. Every time da man go away, lady come over to get me to stay wif dem. They has BBQs wif dere friends and I get to nom on sausages and ova nice fings. I soon start getting bigger! Here's me on dere boat at about 6 munfs old. I am in da wheelhouse which is where da lady like to sit and work so I be wif her. I bit scared of da stairs so they has to carry me up and down:
All dis time, they are lookin after me as often as they can get me. Mum convinces da man to put in dog flap so I can go on da deck and do poo and wee. I still aint bin for no walkies or to vet or anyfink. Lady try to get da man to let her take me to vet so I can go for walks wif her but he say no.
Dey is gettin more and more attached to me and me to dem too! Every time da man come to take me back I dus whine and cry. The lady does cry too and dad say he not sure dat lookin after da Lexie like dis is good idea. Is breakin her heart. The man wot I live wif on ova boat den start bein funny bout me goin to see ma new friends. He fink they gettin too friendly and close wif me. He decide to stop all dis. Mum heartbroken.
One night man go off and leave me alone again. I finks I had enuf of dis malarky! I manage to get out dog flap (he did lock it but I chewed it til I gets out). He had put a gate on his ramp wif a lock so no-one get on and I cud not get off. I fink bout dis for a little while. I know da man and da lady is not far away maybe I bark and they come get me. I bark bark bark but noffink appen. Is very windy and maybe da wind is takin ma bark away. Ok .. I got no choices ... ready!? One .... two .... free .... jump! I jump overboard (even tho I is bery scared) and swim round to da steps near their boat.
I manage to climb da stepsies and get onto the boat they is next to wot is called Mamba! I jump over their boat and den stand outside their door barking as loud as I can! Da lady open da door and look out, she see me sittin there shiverin and all wet all over. She take me inside and they wraps me up in warm blanket and gives me cuddles and little treats.
Mum and dad (to be!) had cleared the decks and had some steel delivered ready to build the new structure on da back of dat boat:
The talk bout wot they will do. They decide that is it! Enough is enough. Dad decide he gonna have quiet word wif man and make it clear to him dat he is not cut out for havin doggie and is time to hand over Lexie to dem wot loves me and will looks after me.
Tune in next time to find out what happen! Did da man hand me over? Did I go and live with dem peeps? Was it to be ma forever home?
All I can say for now is ..... I'll be back......