Let the fun and games begin...
Di Poingdestre has attended every Dogs in Need since it started, and out of all the shows that have been cancelled in 2020, this one hurt the most. There is something very special about DINAS. To be truthful it's actually a holiday with a bit of agility thrown in. It's the only time of the year where she actually got to see so many of her friends in the agility community. And then, suddenly she had a light bulb moment.
I had started training my dogs again, but there was something missing and I couldn't work out what it was even though they had been awesome. I wasn't getting the same buzz. Something was missing.
Then one night I had an idea. If we couldn't go to DINAS, perhaps my camping buddies in Grey 1 could come to me for a mini DINAS to be held on the last Saturday that would have been DINAS 2020. But then I realised that as I live in Wales where we were only allowed one household to meet up with another household.
Speaking to my good friend Christine Dunning later on that week, I told her of my mad idea. She thought it was a brilliant idea and offered her place in England for everyone to come to her instead.
We were still conscious that, at the time of planning, only six people could meet up. Thankfully that was extended the closer we got to the date so a few got added.
Mini DINAS 2020 started with everyone arriving with their caravans - 5mph on the field where we were camped. We were ready to have fun.
Friday night was Hoopers playtime.
Saturday morning started with a ring party type breakfast and then a drive down to LETS Go Manor to run an agility course, followed by a Team Jumping competition - minus the baton, of course. All the classes were judged by Edit Ratkai, who was going to be a judge at DINAS anyway.
Then it was back to camp where a BBQ was held with horseshoe throwing and extreme croquet competitions. It finished off with a quiz as we had run out time to do the bingo!
Sunday morning was another ring party breakfast and again a drive down to Lets Go Manor to run a Jumping course and a Pairs Jumping. Some of the dogs also did a bit of show handling in the field next door where they were running Show Handling classes.
Again back to camp. This time we dressed up - okay, I just put a flower onto my hat - and we had a lovely afternoon cream tea with the prize giving. We even had the Mayor and Mayoress of Sway turn up!
Before we knew it, it was time for everyone to disperse and go home. We had made sure we followed social distanced rules at all times and washed our hands continuously.
Was it a mad idea?
Nope, it was one of my better ideas and huge thank you to Christine for making it happen. It was just what the doctor ordered!
To all my friends whom I normally only see at DINAS, stay safe and see you next year when, fingers crossed, we can make our annual trip to Ipswich and Sainsbury's. Til then stay safe, everyone and roll on DINAS 2021.
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First published 4th September 2020
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