maanantai 28. heinäkuuta 2014

A little more summer please?

Wow, it's been a while since we've last updated! Things are a bit crazy with Uni at the moment (last week of semester and all), so that's why the absence. I have however been writing a review on the Furminator, which I'll probably post sometime around next week!

The weather in Heidelberg has been a bit bipolar; in the morning it might rain like there's no tomorrow, but then a few hours later, the sun starts shining like there's no tomorrow haha! Crazyness...

Africa is doing great and has gotten accustomed to the rather warm weather. She has discovered the benefits of a tiled bathroom floor finally :) Because she is obviously not used to summers being this warm, she is shedding hair like a machine! If I'm not using the vaccuum every day, my once beige floor turns black...

The end of our Heidelberg era is slowly approaching, as I will be done with my studies. There's still quite a bit of stuff to be done, before we are completely ready to go. Future plans? We will for now go back to Finland and stay there for a year. After that, we will see :)

Last Sunday, Afri and I partook in a picnic and one of my good friends took some really nice pictures which she allowed me to share :) Gorgeous, aren't they? And Afri is actually looking towards the lens! *NOTE* All pictures in this post by Marta Sattelmeyer 2014, please do not use without permission!

keskiviikko 18. kesäkuuta 2014



Summer. Sun. Perfection.

perjantai 13. kesäkuuta 2014

On top of Heidelberg

About 2 weeks ago I decided it was time for us to hike up to Königstuhl, the highest point of Heidelberg. Now I've been to Königstuhl once before approximately 2 years ago but never walked the way up. I decided that now was the time to walk all the way to the top with Afri!

Noin 2 viikkoa sitten päätin, että voisimme African kanssa kävellä ylös Königstuhliin. Königstuhl on Heidelbergin korkein kohta ja pääasiassa tarkoitettu ihan vaan näköalapaikaksi. Königstuhl sijaitsee n. 567 m korkeudessa vuoren päällä. Tosin jos täkäläisille puhuu vuoresta, tulet saamaan osaksesi naurua (Heidelbergin vuoria pidetään täällä mäkinä...)

Königstuhl is located 567 m up on a hill. It has one of the most amazing views of Heidelberg, where one can fully appreciate the beauty of this charming city. Königstuhl is one of the main attractions in Heidelberg, reachable either via the Bergbahn from Altstadt or then the hard way (aka what we did) which is walking up. The path is pretty much uphill all the way, but you do get a pretty good leg workout plus it's great for over energetic pooches who never seem to tire (aka Africa).

Königstuhl tarjoaa uskomattoman kauniin näköalan koko Heidelbergiin, jonka vuoksi se onkin yksi suosituimpia turistikohteita. Helpoiten snne pääsee ottamalla Altstadtin Bergbahn ylös, tai sitten vaikeamman kautta kävelemällä (meidän valinta) yksinkertaisesti ylös. Reitti on lähes pelkästään mäkeä ylös, mutta siinä saa samalla itselle hyvän jalkatreenin ja jopa ADHD koiran vähän väsytettyäkin.

Our initial plan was to take the bus up to Königstuhl and then walk down some path and hopefully end up home at some point. The bus 39 goes straight to Königstuhl (for those who want to skip the whole walking uphill part). Now, the only problem with the bus is that first of all, it does not go very often ( approximately every 30 min-1 h) and that you really need to pay close attention to the stop schedules, for it does not always go all the way up to Königstuhl. This is what happened in our case...

Alkuperäinen suunitelma oli napata bussi ylös Königstuhliin ja sitten kävellä sieltä alas ja toivon mukaan löytää kotiin asti. Bussi 39 menee suoraan Königstuhliin (kolmas vaihtoehto päästä ylös). 39:n ongelma on valitettavasti se, että se menee melko harvoin (n. 30 min-1 h) ja pysäkkiaikatauluihin pitää ehdottoman tarkaan kiinnittää huomiota, sillä bussi ei aina mene Königstuhliin asti. Näin pääsi käymään meille...

The "quality" of the paths vary greatly and because of this you should opt for nice sturdy shoes. Now, most of the paths are nice and wide, very comfortable to walk on. The nice thing about the Rohrbach woods is the fact that you have directions of places carved on some of the larger boulders near the paths. However, don't trust them blindly! We followed a small path to Sprunghöhe, but instead ending up there, it took us into the bushes and the whole path suddenly dissapeared completely. But they are good in giving you an approximate idea of direction.

Metsäpolkujen "laatu" vaihtelee aikalailla, jonka vuoksi kannattaa varata itselleen mukaan hyvin kulutusta kestävät sopivan napakat kengät. Suurin osa poluista on kivan leveitä ja pohjaltaan kivoja, eli kaikinpuolin hyviä kävelemiseen. Mutta toiset taasen saattavat olla hyvinkin kapeita ja kivisiä. Rohrbachin metsien hyvä puoli on myös se, että tienviittoja on ripoteltu pitkin metsiä. Niihin ei kuitenkaan kannata aivan sokeasti luottaa! Terveisin eräät, jotka tienviittaa seuraamalla päätyivät pusikkoon, jossa polku sitten yhtäkkiä hävisi. Ne antavat kuitenkin hieman osviittaa siihen missä suunnassa on mikä.

sunnuntai 18. toukokuuta 2014

In the Depths of the Forest...

Whilst on our walk to the Rohrbach woods Afri and I came across something rather spectacular!
This is the Ehrenfriedhof, a graveyard for those who fought in the first World War. The thing that makes this place kind of special is the fact that it is almost literally in the middle of a forest!

Oltiin African kanssa Rohrbachin metsässä ja löydettiin sen keskeltä jotain aika jännää! Metsän keskeltä löytyi Ehrenfriedhof, joka on siis hautausmaa niille jotka kuolivat ensimmäisessä Maailman Sodassa. Niinkuin sanottu, tämä paikka on tosiaan lähes keskellä metikköä!

We decided to take a different route from our usual one and that is how we stumbled here. The Ehrenfriedhof is almost 300 m high up! It was as if we had stepped into a whole new world. I was completely in awe of this place and cursed for not having a camera with me the first time we found it. Two days later however we returned and these are some of the pictures I took (mostly of Afri).

Päätimme mennä eri reittiä kuin yleensä ja niinhän me tänne sitten päädyttiinkin. Ehrenfriedhof on melkein 300 m korkeudella! Tuntui kuin olisimme astuneet ihan kokonaan toiseen maailmaan tullessamme tänne. Harmittelin kovasti ensimmäisellä kerralla tänne löydettyämme kameran puuttumista. Pari päivää myöhemmin palasimme kuitenkin takaisin ja tässä siis muutamia kuvia, joita tuli silloin otettua (pääasiassa Afrista).

torstai 1. toukokuuta 2014

Click click!

Last weekend Africa and I headed to the pet shop to get some treats and something that I've been thinking of getting Afri for a long time. (Pictures taken during Easter in Rohrbach/Leimen)

The clicker! Afri is a very "conditionable" type of dog and I figured that clicker training would benefit us greatly. And right I was!

I've been using clicker training for Afri now since last Saturday and I am already kind of amazed by its results. First of all, Afri learned very fast that after a click she always gets a treat. When she didn't get the click, she would try to offer me everything possible and stare at the clicker in a rather expecting sort of fashion. Her motivation is on a whole different level after introducing the clicker into our sessions. For a Hovawart, Africa has always been an exceptionally fast learner. Her concentration isn't the best, which then requires me to keep the training interesting, short and fun. 

With the clicker, I can keep our sessions a little more repetitive than usual. Normally, she is not a big fan of repetition; Africa finds it boring, loses interest and simply leaves the scene to do something else. Now, she can't get enough and is actually asking me to do the training sessions with her!  

lauantai 19. huhtikuuta 2014


Some recent spring pictures taken in Finland...

Our time in Finland didn't go perfectly according to plan; we were supposed to enter with Africa the Latvian Winner 2014 show in Riga, but then due to Afri's "time of the year" happening during the same weeks, she could naturally not participate... Due to that we also had to check off some match shows on our calendar and show training sessions. Bummer! 

Now, we are back in Germany as of a few days. Heidelberg is beautifully green and very warm, so we'll be making most of enjoying the great weather!

perjantai 21. helmikuuta 2014