Max - We're the result of a change of lifestyle - how cool is that?!
JD - You're jumping ahead a bit Max....!
Max - Ooops - sorry!
JD - Anyway, for 22 years our female human worked in a place called 'the big smoke'. But our humans didn't live there because apparently it costs a lot of money to own a property there.
Max - It would cost many, many bags of doggie biscuits even for a tiny studio apartment - sheesh!
JD - And our humans liked the sea so much that they decided to live in a place on the coast which was 75 miles away from where our female human worked.
Max - This meant that she had to commute to work by train every day - 2 hours there, 2 hours back!
JD - Wow! That's a lot of train time! And that was on a GOOD day apparently, when the trains were actually running on time.
Max - Which we gather was sort of rare....
JD - ....she told us that as the train pulled away from the station every day she used to look out of the window into the passing fields at the folks walking their dogs and feel really envious. She would wonder what they did for a living and wish that she could do the same so that she could have time to have a dog.
Max - Now, our female human loved her job, but hated her lifestyle. She had to leave home at 6.00 am every day (frequently earlier when she had a very busy day scheduled) just to get into the office at a reasonable time, and 7.30 pm was usually the earliest she could get home. That's a long day....
JD - ....especially when you consider she also used to have a Crackberry....
Max - ....um, don't you mean a Blackberry JD?
JD - He he! Well, that's the official name for it, but our female human told me she 'sold her soul' for the price of this gadget and now always refers to it as a 'Crackberry' because of its addictive nature. Our male human told me he used to think it would have to be prised out of her cold, dead hand as she was ALWAYS on it catching up with work e-mails when she was at home. She ran a global project you see, so would often receive e-mails from lots of far away places such as Beijing, Sydney, Bangkok, Jakarta - her global network covered 24 countries - at various times of the day and night - and always tried to respond to them the second they came in.
Max - She also used to work remotely at weekends and would also log onto her work account most evenings when she got home. She ended up hating what she was doing simply because she was 'left to it' with no support, recognition or help, which was a shame.
JD - Anyways, she had wanted a dog for a long time - many years - but knew that she would never have the time if she carried on doing what she was doing.
Max - But she was so involved in her job she didn't have the courage to walk away from it herself.
JD - And she didn't have the money to just up and leave either, she was in a difficult position.
Max - She used to say 'I'm not simply walking away - I've worked there too long, they can pay me off!'
JD - And then finally one day late last year - she got a call, THE call. Like so many others...
Max - ....she was called into a meeting room and told that due to the 'current financial climate' her job was 'at risk' and she was facing redundancy.
JD - She had seen many good friends where she had worked being laid off over the past 18 months and during each wave of redundancy she had hoped it would happen to her - and now it finally had!
Max - She told us that she felt a bit guilty because she had got what she wanted, but loads of people in the same position as her were devastated.
JD - But she had to be honest to herself. In fact she practically skipped out of the building!
Max - She rang our male human and he was so pleased that he booked a long holiday in Egypt for the two of them. They jetted off soon after and spent their time on the banks of the Nile, discussing what she would do next.Our humans enjoyed a relaxing few weeks on the banks of the Nile....
JD - Top of her list was to get a dog! But she was scared....
Max - ....she wanted to get a local job as she had already got a bit bored at home (humans are strange!) so was worried that if she got a dog straight away it might get in the way of job hunting. So she suggested getting a dog for when she turned two hundred and eighty years old in a few months time....
JD - ....but our male human knew that getting a puppy then - when she would probably be working again- would be bad timing. He wisely knew that if she wanted a dog she should get one whilst she had a bit of time on her hands. He also thought that if she took a bit longer than expected to get a job then having a dog would give her something else to focus on which could only be a good thing.
Max - So when they got back home, just before Christmas, they located a breeder of Miniature Schnauzers and were delighted to discover that they had just had a litter of 4 boys.
JD - They had never had a pet before so had done a lot of research. Our male human has allergies to pet hair so they needed a dog that didn't moult....
Max - ....and our female human is a little scared of large dogs so they needed a breed that was small-ish. She also wanted a breed that had quite a bit of energy as she likes running and being outdoors so wanted a dog that would be happy to join her. They decided upon Miniature Schnauzers - hooray!
JD - The day before they came to view us our female human told our male human that she wanted TWO dogs so they would be company for each other.
Max - He was a bit stunned! He has admitted that initially he wasn't too keen on getting any dog and was only doing it for her - humph! Of course, he's now smitten and denies all of this - he he he!
JD - So they came to view our family. Our female human sat on the floor at the breeders (sigh - we can't take her anywhere....he he he!) and I though 'oooh - comfy lap!' so wandered over, climbed up and settled down for a lovely snooze. So that was me chosen!
Max - Shortly after that it was meal time. Sigh.....I remember all that time ago - we used to get four meals a day - FOUR! Yummy!
JD - So our breeder got our meals ready - I was comfy so stayed where I was....
Max - ....whilst I started doing a pogo-stick impression against the cabinets to get first dibs on the food. Yummy - I used to love our puppy food....
JD - ....quite! But our male human was instantly impressed with you. He really liked your confidence and forthright nature so that was it - we had been picked!
Max - And what a relief! Because the next day the other two pups were chosen by two other families.
JD - Two days after we were chosen our female human had an interview for an office job that was based 5 minutes away from where she lived. 20 minutes after leaving the interview she was offered the job - she's convinced we're now her good luck charms!
Max - The job started two weeks after we were due to come home which was ideal. She told the folks that she was working with about us and arranged to come home every lunchtime to see us. She now gets a puppy-sitter on the days she's too busy to make it.
JD - Her job isn't permanent - but paws crossed it might become that way as she's really enjoying it.
Max - She's been there 5 months now, which means that we've lived here for 5 months and 2 weeks. Our female human sometimes walks us in the field where the railway runs in the mornings so she can wave at the train she used to take- he he he!
JD - She says that she can't believe how good life is now. She's now living the life she used to dream of when she gazed out of the train window every morning. When she worked in the 'big smoke' she says she never had time to appreciate her life, but now she says she's happier than she's been in a long, long time.
Max - And it's all because of us!
JD - Well, I think it's more because our female human has completely changed her lifestyle and now has a bit of time to actually appreciate and therefore enjoy her life!
Max - So that's the story of how- and why - we came to live where we do.
JD - We're so happy that our female human was made redundant, he he he!
Max - Yup! Because - as our female human says every day now - life sure is sweet! Just make sure you have enough time every day to really appreciate what you've got.
JD - We love that we remind her of the moment her life changed for the better - we feel extra special because of it!