If you've been following our blog for any amount of time, you'll know that Hayling Island is my family's happy place. I spent the majority of my childhood there, and for the past three years my parents have owned a holiday caravan there too. Now that my boyfriend and I are creating our own little family, we like to continue tradition and continue to visit Hayling as often as we can!
It was our fourth anniversary on Saturday 29th July, so on the Friday we packed up our things, and the dogs of course, and headed down to the van! On Saturday morning we were up bright and early, with plans for a beach walk. I find that the Beachlands end of the seafront is best for dog walks; it's dog-friendly all year round, and tends to be much quieter than Eastoke Corner. Archie can go off the lead and have a proper run (sadly Winnie's recall isn't reliable enough for her to be off-lead!) and when the tide is out there's lots of lovely flat sand to walk on.
We walked for a few miles along the beach, before stopping for a little rest. Archie was very interested in all the other dogs that were playing at the water's edge! Winnie, on the other hand, just wanted to tell them all off as usual. Whenever we stop anywhere, we pop Winnie in her carrier as it gives her a safe little den and seems to help her reactive barking. We did the same thing on the beach, and unfortunately received some judgemental comments from passersby. It's a shame people can't keep their opinions to themselves! Not all dogs in carriers are "handbag dogs."
After the long walk back to the car, we were all pretty hungry! We stopped off at the café near the car park to refuel on burgers; I love that they've painted all the tables in rainbow pastels since our last visit! Sitting down anywhere is always a trial for Archie and Winnie... it's when their reactivity comes to the forefront. They barked a little when some people stopped to talk to us with their dogs (they also had a black and tan daxie called Winnie!) but generally, they were pretty good. It's always a relief when they behave!
When we arrived back at the van, it was still pretty early. I didn't want to sit around at the site all day, so after a rest (and an outfit change for us and the dogs!) we headed off to Chichester. Unfortunately, at this moment it began to pour down with rain. We were already out, so we figured we'd brave it... bad choice! We had to carry the dogs around, Winnie in her carrier and Archie in Will's jacket, as it was suddenly much colder than anticipated. We ended up just paying Chichester a flying visit, and the rain didn't let up at all for the rest of the day. I used the opportunity to take some photos of the dogs in the van!
On Sunday we had a lazy morning at the van, before heading out for lunch at Mad Hatters. It's a little Alice in Wonderland-themed tearoom and gift shop on the Hayling seafront, which has lovely food. I'm super picky, but I thoroughly enjoyed my sandwiches, tea and scones. The tearoom isn't dog friendly, but in good weather you can sit outside with them. This is what we did, and it was fine! Again, the dogs were pretty good until a cocker spaniel arrived... Archie had a good old bark, but it didn't take too long for him to settle again. Personally I think that their reactive behaviour has really improved, and outings like this are a "practise makes perfect" sort of thing. We'll get there!
We had a lovely weekend at the van, and I can't wait to go back very soon. One of the joys of working in a school is the long summer holiday! What are your summer plans?
Chloé, Archie and Winnie
(The dogs are wearing bows and bandanas from Chloé Suzanne Designs, my etsy shop, in this post.)