Following my delightful trip to Woodfarm Barns, I was more than a little excited to discover that The Humans had booked a weekend away on board a barge with Woodfarm Barges. The announcement of this news, however, had me curling my paws. I’ll relay it to you now, fair reader, as it was an altogether ridiculous spectacle.
Barging into the room (pun intended) after a day at work, Human 1 not only woke me from my peaceful slumber, but offended my eyes with a garish sailor’s outfit he’d adorned to deliver the news.
“Guess where we’re off to?!” he screeched with all the grace of a goose.
“No, you didn’t!” Human 2 replied, clearly besides herself and on the verge of an embarrassing episode.
“I did! You’ve been on at me all week, and we had such a good time at the barns that I just couldn’t resist!”
Throwing her arms around him, Human 2 kept repeating “you’re the best, you’re the best, you’re the best!”
Was she seeing the same man I was? He wasn’t the best, he was positively the worst. I mean, a sailors hat, a striped tee shirt and goofy grin- whoever heard of such a thing?!
I can only thank my stars that he didn’t do it down the park in front of all the neighbourhood dogs. It’s bad enough that they insist on me wearing a wooly jumper in winter. The Alsatians have a literal field day when they spot me out in that thing.
After the commotion died down, the Humans took up their iPads to find even more things to do in Suffolk. Dog-friendly things to do, obviously.
Though they’ve learned I never dignify their questions with a response, they kept asking if I was excited and would I be ok on board a barge.
As a dog that knows his port from his starboard, and his stern from his bow, my four sea legs would be perfectly at home.
I’ve also read Moby Dick several times, so I also knew that there was nothing the open seas could throw at me that I wouldn’t be prepared for.
(I did later learn that the barge was to remain moored for the entire duration of our stay, and I really needn’t have worried about huge white whales threatening our trip.)
Following a few days of anticipation on my behalf, and plenty of itinerary building on the behalf of The Humans, I was placed in my travel crate and we were on our way to Woodfarm Barges. Thankfully, the Humans left the fancy dress in the Big Basket Downstairs on their way out of the house.
Immediately upon our arrival at Snape Maltings, it was evident that Woodfarm Barges are just as spotless and just as superb as Woodfarm Barns. Three double cabins, three bathrooms and two lounge areas?! I could hardly believe my luck. I could easily walk the length of the vessel and The Humans would have no need for me to don my wooly jumper for another of their walks.
Once we’d settled in and The Humans had their customary glass of bubbles and I’d had my customary bowl of water, we set about doing all of the dog-friendly activities suggested on the Woodfarm Barns and Barges websites.
You really have to hand it to those guys – I suspect they actually spend more time researching things for us canines to do than they do human activities.
Quite right, too.
All in all, I was treated to days of endless walks through picturesque fields, pub bowls of water in Southwold, Felixstowe and Aldeburgh. I journeyed along the Sailor’s Path, visited Walberswick, took a dip at Thorpeness, and even got to see what all the fuss was about surrounding Rendlesham Forest. Turns out the fuss is fully justified. Even I, a dog that is fitter than a butcher’s dog (I know, I’ve seen the dalmatian that belongs to our local butcher, and he isn’t a patch on me), couldn’t have possibly walked all of the trails in a single day.
I really feel that I can be quite harsh on The Humans sometimes. They do treat me to stays and days out at some of the best places in England, after all.
I’m reliably informed by the proprietor that you can easily book a place on board one of these barges in Suffolk by clicking the following link. I think you really should do it, it’s fantastic. And that’s coming from one the most discerning of poodles around.