Monday, September 12, 2011

It Must be Monday!

Saturday bright and early I got up to go to Ohio with Cathy.  I gathered up supplies, showered and gave Bandit his pills, then cooked breakfast for him so he could have the rest of his meds.  With Princess and Ace in tow, I jumped in the truck and headed over to her house.  While waiting, Princess decided that she really wanted in the front of the truck and chewed a hole through the rope grate.  Thank goodness I had my front windows rolled 3/4 of the way up!  Narrowly averting disaster, I followed Cathy up to Owensville, and then she followed me with the GPS to the fairgrounds.

We got there a little early, but not quite enough time to get the girls CERF tested.  So I changed in a port-a-pot (never a pleasant experience) and got ready to go in the ring after doing a bit of window shopping.  Snickers is always a fun happy puppy!  She decided she wasn't getting in to the ring fast enough, so kept trying to jump the white fencing to get in.  Since I wouldn't let her in the ring, she wanted to see what was going on, so she jumped up so high and so precise, she touched my nose with hers.  This startled me a little until I figured out what she wanted, so was ready for her second jump.  I caught her and held her in my arms so she could have a good look around.  This made the judge giggle a little, and charmed a few people standing around watching.  Snickers is such a good natured, cute little pup, and she communicates her wants to me pretty clearly.  Fortunately she is a very food-focused pup, so a little bit of bait goes a long way with her.

She performed beautifully when it was finally her turn.  She hammed it up, and even wiggled her body happily as the judge approached her.  She gently licked her on the nose when he bent to check her bite.  She charmed her I think, and ate up the attention.  She moved and performed like a pro!  I hardly had to correct her stance when she stacked, and she was so happy to play the "show" game!  She won against another 7-12 mo girl, and got winners reserve.  Glory got BOS, so it was a good day. 

Sunday I got up early hoping to do some training, but the weather wasn't cooperating.  It was 62 degrees and the humidity was enough to drown in.  So I got out the scooper and did my overdo lawn chores.  Finished clearing the fenceline, and picked up 3 bags of nuts from the dogyard (chestnuts and black walnuts).  After I was done, the heat and humidity wore on me, and I fought valiantly against a headache and barely won.  Not feeling great, instead of going out, I read the book "Ballad of the Northland" by Iditarod musher Jason Barron (still reading it, and it has a lot of potential).

This morning (Monday) I got up at 5am and the weather was inviting, so I dressed hurriedly and harnessed Princess.  The other racers seemed occupied playing in the yard and only Bucky kept bugging me to go, so he got harnessed too.

Both these pups taught me two valuable lessons today.
#1 They are an awesome running team!  Both are fast and incredibly strong!
#2 Don't take both of them out withough a helping handler!!!!!! 
It took all of my might just to hold them back while putting on the tug lines, then all my strength to keep them from yanking the bike out of my hands as I tried to get it on the road.  I leaned over the seat and crossbar because I couldn't get my foot on the pedal as they took off even as I tried to restrain them.  They pulled a bit left, which cause me to counter right to stay up.  Unfortunately this put the front tire off the pavement on the right, which wasn't so bad, but impossible to cut back on to the blacktop as it was a six inch verticle and I still didn't have my feet on the pedals.

Needless to say, the front tire stopped, the back kept going, and slammed me half-on, half off the pavement head-first.  Good thing I have a hard head (and a helmet).  To add insult to injury, the bike slammed down on my back, but at least this allowed me to grab it and keep the dogs from dragging it off, for a split second anyway...  I tried to get up, but while trying to hold back two young incredibly strong dogs, it didn't go very well, and they yanked the bike out of my hands and took off with it dragging behind them.  It didn't even seem to slow them at all.  Poor bike, I think it got the worst of it, second only to me.

They careened around the corner on the other side of the bridge, but lodged the bike in the lee of the curve bewteen the pavement and the guardrail.  I ran after them, catching up to them out of breath and in no little amount of pain.  For a few seconds I couldn't figure out why the front brake was locked up, so unhooked the spotlight from the front handlebar only to realize they had twisted the forks around 360, wrapping the brake cable around tight enough to cause the seize.  I twisted them back in to place, all the while still trying to hold back two young, incredibly athletic dogs... Now I know I'm crazy for wanting to do this, and I still question the sanity of jumping on the pedal, and letting the pups take off.

This is when I discovered the seat was backwards too.  Ah well, who needs to sit down?  We raced to the old barn where I finally got them to halt, quickly turned the seat back around as they executed a 'come around haw'.  I barely got back on the pedals in time for them to take off back towards home.  Bucky wanted to visit with the neighbor dogs, but a quick "Leave It" reminded him this wasn't social hour, and we made it back to the driveway in a reasonable amount of pieces.  I grabbed up the leashes as they walked in to the front yard.  I still had to hold on to the bike after laying it down on the lawn, so I could unhook the two youngsters, leash them up and escort them in to the house.

Two meat patties later, and I was finally able to take stock of my injuries.  Mostly bumps and bruises, a fat lip, one large scrape down my belly where I was laying on the bar, and a black eye... Well if it was easy, everyone would do it, right?  I certainly feel every one of my years today...

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