Well, the Beagle Ball was a night of surprises (for me at least, probably not for my beagles who knew how hard they had worked this Drag "Hunting" season).
I came home with six certificates and two trophies plus bags of dog food and lots of goodies for both me and Jamie and Jemma.
I must admit that I had trouble not falling over whilst carrying everything back to my car in my stiletto heels (and no, it had nothing to do with anything imbibed!).
But first, congratulations to my little girl Jemma who did very well in improving her ranking from 24th last year to 19th this year. She is way too clever and when she gets tired, she just takes the short cut home. She, unlike Jamie, will always return to the waiting owners thus running almost double the distance.
Jamie just hangs around at the end socialising with the team checking which beagles reach the finish line. Jemma also has a habit, since she is usually in the middle of the bunch, of turning around just before the finish and joining the front runners who are already returning to their owners.
The only way to correct this is to "walk the line" as we say. This means making sure Jemma sees me leaving her behind as I walk up front with the team laying the trail. This technique usually ensures that Jemma actually crosses the line to find me. But it's not always that easy because one has to be very fit to keep up with the hunt master who sets a cracking pace and I have to find people with hands to spare to release both my beagles.
Jamie received a certificate purely for the honour of being amongst the Top Ten beagles and a logo which I must embroider onto his bib to show off his status next season. Then came the drum roll for the announcement of the exact positions of the top ten beagles. As the numbers were called out, I was delighted that Jamie was placed 6th overall, just behind five of the top beagles who have dominated the past couple of seasons.
When it came to the Double Dog teams (two males) Jamie was teamed up with the amazing Roger who was the Top Beagle of the year. They achieved a second position in this category.
I sat back thinking the excitement was over, but there were more surprises in store for Jamie and Jemma's rather befuddled owner. There is a trophy for the Most Improved Beagle since the previous season. Jamie's rise from 21st to 6th position this year earned him this fabulous accolade.
And it was not over yet. There are categories for the Best Junior Beagle, Best Adult Beagle and Best Veteran Beagle. Lo and behold Jamie's name was called out as Best Junior Beagle of the year! Well done my boy because my contribution was only that of taxi driver to the "hunts". Jamie achieved this all on his own.
Of course, Jamie is not sure what the fuss is all about and what these strange looking objects mean. He is blissfully unaware of his achievements only that he had a heck of a lot of fun achieving them!