If only Maizy was a bloodhound

The firstborn has a mobile. It is sleekly curved, slightly rubberised to the touch, a pleasing matt black. It is called a pebl. That’s pronounced “pebble”. Firstborn flips it open with a neat flick of a single hand which is considered extremely cool by his peers. According to the manufacturer:

With chic simplicity, the subtly stylish Motorola PEBL adds a calming convenience to your everyday travels.

Really? Calming? We are currently on our travels, camping on the top of a cliff overlooking this beach (also a gratuitous Maizy picture but I can’t resist).

her supreme saltiness of sea dog

You will note that it is shingly. Stoney. It is, in fact, entirely covered in pebbles. They are its most obvious feature. Can you guess what’s next?

Yes. Firstborn managed to lose his pebl on the beach.

We narrowed down the area of potential loss to a quarter mile or so between a notice about crumbling cliffs and a lump of concrete which had crumbled down to the beach. Firstborn was extremely grumpy about being forced to go to the beach and the last time he had seen his phone was apparently when he made a call to moan about how miserable his life was and this call was by the yellow sign.


Part of the outward and visible signs of extreme grumpiness are the headphones indicating that the grumpee is listening to music at an extremely high volume. It is, I conclude, an electronically-aided version of putting your fingers in your ears and shouting “la la la la la”, but I have decided not to mention this to the grumpee in question.

It would be an exaggeration to say that we subjected the place to a finger-tip search but we certainly spent more than an hour scanning the area, first side to side in strips parallel to the sea then, when that revealed nothing, in strips up and down between sea and cliff. At intervals I rang the phone hoping that we would hear it over the crash of the waves until its owner remembered that it was set on vibrate.

The organisation of the beach was fascinating. At the base of the cliff tiny pebbles which gave way to succeeding banks of shingle organised by size of stone. The most difficult to scan were those banks where the pebbles were the same size as the phone. What we really needed was a bloodhound, suggested secondborn, because Maizy was no help at all and when told to “seek” ran up the side of the cliff like a mountain goat and disappeared over the top.

The sun lowered in the sky. The shadows cast by the cliff were deep and dark. The chill was enough to make us, t-shirted as we were, shiver. Secondborn sat on the stones and screamed about how miserable his life was.

When the shadows reached the sea I called off the search. Secondborn and I set off along the beach, Maizy trotting at our heels. Firstborn appeared to be labouring under a powerful and private emotion and we let him mourn alone.

When we were halfway across the stretch of beach between the yellow sign and the steps up to the campsite, the stretch of beach we had not searched, there was the phone, clearly visible, lying on top of the small stones in an entirely un-pebble-like manner.

Another search which concluded successfully was that of the identity of secondborn’s monster of the deep.

creature of the deep

Click through to the picture on flickr to discover the amazing resource that is the ID Please group. Many thanks to Dem for suggesting it.

8 Replies to “If only Maizy was a bloodhound”

  1. What a nerve-wracking adventure, with a happy ending! Hope firstborn was suitably pleased and happy. Love all your photos, rr.

  2. Camping trip sounds par for the course for a wet week away! But you came back with some outstanding photos of the boys.

  3. Pipefish! Like a seahorse ( ‘indomitable hippocamp’) but less the charm factor.
    – ‘that which you thought was lost is found again’ (probably a misquote), always a good feeling.
    Heavenly Maizy, I’m off to look at the boys!

  4. Thanks, m-l and Jean.

    Lucy, did you know that without clicking through? is there *anything* you don’t know? You say less the charm factor but there’s rather a charming account on one of the links given beneath the picture itself from a man who’d had three males and one female in an aquarium for a couple of years. One day he noticed that one of the males was heavy eggs. And then another. The female donated eggs to both the older males twice and totally ignored the young virile one that the aquarium owner seems to have been rooting for.

    Anyway, charming or not Maizy found them a toothsome snack.

  5. Gosh, ID Please is a good idea. Makes me wish I had a functioning camera with which to take pictures of all the mystery plants in the garden. I suppose I could get Pete to do it, but where’s the fun in that?

  6. I take it all back! Creatures after my own heart ( less the donating eggs bit but you get the idea…) In fact they’re pretty much like seahorses I think but without the baroque curlicues.
    No, I really didn’t click through; I might have got around to it but I got waylaid browsing back and back through time in your Flickr archive, where I haven’t been for way too long. By the time I emerged from the green (with envy) thought in the green shade nof that garden of heavenly and earthly delights, an unknown length of time had elapsed, ‘and when she came home again her friends were all gone’.
    Why do I always come here at this time of day when my brain is trickling off every which way? Anyway, I shall check out ID Please as it sounds like a useful resource for sad-minded pedants and other would-be know-it-alls!

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