NADAC Championships 2017 – Rounds 5 & 6 or Day 3

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day 3 of 4. This is a marathon competition for sure.

today we were dog 171 in the run order.  The elite classes seem to run slightly less than 60 dogs and hour, the pre elite dogs slightly less than 50 dogs an hour, all the dogs average out to about 50 an hour on courses 20-23 obstacles in length.  At 171 I figured we’d be running about 3.5hrs after the first dog.  So we decided it was best for our dogs, hubby and me to skip the morning briefing and the walk through and spend the morning at the hotel.  The powers that be at NADAC kindly have been posting the course maps each day on the website so I knew I’d be able to view that before our run and I’d be able to watch at least a few dozen dogs run the course too once we arrived.

At 8:30am I looked at the course map. It’s a doozy!  28 obstacles, 2 contacts and a whole crap load of tunnels and weave poles.

At 9am I texted a friend to find out what dog was on the line and oi as I suspected when I saw the course map, today’s first round was running super slow.  We had way longer than 3.5hrs till we would run.  So more relaxing and resting at the hotel.  Which was much needed as I can feel my fibromyalgia pain levels starting to rise, ugh.  Thank goodness for modern technology meaning I didn’t have to be there at the event to learn all of that.  They are also posting results in real time on the nadac website which I can then check as an alt way to gauge where things are in the run order.

we arrived right on schedule around 11am and ran our first round about 12:30p.  Zora was on fire.  Just barely got a front foot in the dog walk contact zone, and was going so fast she flew past the last set of weaves and I had to call her back to get them done.  With all of that she still won the class.  1st place in round 5.

I was tired, hot and sweaty after that mega course and zora was clearly hot so I took both the dogs to the pond on site for a swim.  They were thrilled.  I was thrilled with the stiff breeze out by the pond to cool me off.  I even dragged my chair out to a shady spot and sat in the cool quiet with the dogs for over an hour.  Round 5 took forever to finish, nearly 7 hours so everyone was very very happy to find round 6 was a fast short no jumps, weaves or contacts 12 obstacle course.  After the walk throughs we ran our run about 2hrs later.  They were finishing up the last runs of the night when we left around seven pm.

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Nadac champs round 6 course map

my plan of front crosses worked very well for round 7.  We had 2 slightly wide turns but were still fast enough to stay in the lead by less than .7 of a second.  Our 6th first place!  Fingers crossed tomorrow goes well too!

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NADAC Championships 2017 – Rounds 3 & 4 or Day 2

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Today we hand the blog over to the corgi dog.  Risky giving her such worldly power but she’s been a rather good girl so…

Zora here, let me tell you about my day!

first I love this hotel where I get my very own huge bed each night!  Tom has to sleep on the floor on his dog bed, haha.  And he says he’s the favorite, ha!  I even get this fancy chair so I can easily hop from bed to bed and bed to floor.  I love it!

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Zora lying on a chair looking at me

next mum keeps feeding us breakfast while it’s still dark out!  I could get used to this!  At home I have to wait until it’s light out, that’s a long time to wait!

Today when we got to this agility place we keep going every day, mum got out and left me in the car!!  Sure The guy I love stayed with me, but she left me in my cage for like 2 hours!  She said she was walking the course, but who knows.

 

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when she came back instead of getting me out, we drove some more.  Then more waiting in the car while the guy I love went into some stores.  Mum was tired and kinda cranky so I was a good girl and didn’t bark at all.  We then drove some more and what the heck? Why are we back at the hotel?  What happened to agility?

mum and he crawled back to bed to sleep some more so I figured why not and took a nap too.  We napped for a while.  Then the humans got up again and we got back in the car.  This time when we got to the agility place she got me out!  She said since we were the 4th to last dog today there was no point in sitting around in the crating area for 12hrs today.  Ok I guess that makes sense.

after my lots of napping I was so happy so mum let Tom and I off leash to run and run and run in the field.  It was awesome!  After mum said I was still wound up so i got to go all by myself outside to play with mum and the wubba!  SO MUCH FUN!!  I love the wubba

a while later finally my turn!  I love hot dogs and my squeaky ball and I love agility.  As I ran up and over the dog walk mum asked me to wait, so I did but then I heard this weird click click click click sound.  The photographer was taking my picture!  I had to figure it all out as there were these people standing there staring at me too.  Mum said everything was ok that it was just the judge and ring crew so I believed her and finished the dog walk and had fun the rest of the run.  Mum was very pleased, I got to play corgi ball outside after and eat hot dogs, it was great!  The guy I love was happy too, he said we won first place again!  I dont know what that means but if it means hot dogs then sign me up.

my round 3 video: https://youtu.be/m34H8BhI-dk

then we had to wait. And mum was getting grouchy.  She said peoples voices and the noise was becoming a problem.  She said we would have 5 hours before I would run agility again!  5 hours till more hot dogs and squeaky ball, yikes!

the guy I love and mum put me in the car and then he parked it in another field.  then they left me there!  Hey!  Sure the windows were down and the sun shade was up and I was nice and cool but Hey!!  I hear you taking Tom for a walk without me!

Whatever, I was kind of tired so took a nap. Soon Tom and mum came and took a nap in the car with me so it wasn’t too bad. After I even got a little walk so I forgive those humans for locking me in the car alone in my crate.

Tom and I had dinner, then I got him to wrestle with me!  Super fun.

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Tom and zora wrestling in the crating area

And I took the antler even though I knew he wanted it.  Haha mine all mine Tom!

 

Mum said I wasnt allowed to be a hoarder and had to share.  So I barked at her.  She said she didnt care, I still had to be nice to Tom.

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Zora barking

By then mum had taken a nap, had her walk and eaten dinner and was no longer so grouchy.  She said she got her second wind.  Who knew humans had a first wind?

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Champs round 4 course map

I took another nap and when I woke up it was time for agility again.  At 8:30pm?!  What?!  That’s bed time, its dark out. Mum could tell I was a bit confused and still a little sleepy so she said she was going to run pedal to the metal.  we are on dirt lady.  There is no for you metal to run on.  Anyway, she ran with me the way I really really like and I was super fast!  Super corgi fast!!  I had so much fun!  Dog walk, tunnels, a-frame, more tunnels, jumps, hoops and ever more tunnels!  Mum was so so so happy at the end.  She said I was an amazing and very good girl.  Tell me something I dont know.  I got so many hot dogs and it was awesome!  I love hot dogs did I tell you that?

my round 4 video: https://youtu.be/KJnvMLuDJ_o

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First place ribbon on the awards wall

After she made me do corgi stretches and cool down she said we won first place again!  And my super awesomeness also has a NATCH 2 title now.  And I got hot dogs.  And my squeaky ball.  And a walk.  And a happy mum.  And a bed all to myself.  So I guess it turned out to be a pretty great day.

Night all.

Love,

Zora

NADAC Championships 2017 – Runs 1 & 2 or Day 1

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I still haven’t really processed today other than it was incredible. Incredible. Such an awesome environment and group of people. And Zora was on fire. It was awesome.

Should I go chronologically through the day or just skip to the really really cool?

Ok the really really cool, we won. First place. Both rounds today. I can’t believe it. We won our first 2 rounds of Elite Standard Small Dog. I still can’t believe it. We left before they posted the ribbons so maybe tomorrow when we pick up those it will feel more real.

Regardless of the score, it was amazing being out there with Zora. She is such a good little dog. We had a blast. Our second run was such a thrill.  There were a number of discrimination and off course challenges in that course yet she was so smooth!  We were really working as a team today  made me so happy!!!!

Again I can’t figure out how to embed you tube videos in WordPress using the iPad so here are the links to our runs:

Elite round 1 https://youtu.be/EWdQwvd-d5Y

Elite round 2 https://youtu.be/J_YoJgT7LcA

Now to the day as a whole to give you a better idea of how the days of Championships run.

As today was the first of the 4 days of The actual Championship competition the morning briefing ran much longer than usual. It began at 7am and ran till a bit after 8am. By about 40min in I was shoving down the desire to grab the microphone and stomp on it. The mic there has this very grating vibration, so I become smart and wore ear plugs most anytime I was near it the rest of the day. Speaking of ear plugs, we picked some up at CVS to try overnight. In the past I’ve never been able to stand ear plugs. Depending on the day I have a varying level of tinnitus and ear plugs makes me really aware of it. But with my challenges sleeping in the hotel and the low cost of ear plugs I decided to give them another chance. I’m so glad I did. As apparently my body is being ok with them and I actually was able to sleep in the hotel room last night. Yay!!!!

After the briefing each competition grouping of about 35 people was given 6 minutes each to walk the course. The walk throughs all told took maybe 45 minutes.

First dog was on the line and running at 9:20am

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First dog to run maizie a border collie

Today we were dog 49 To run each round. Each day the number we run will change as they rotate when groups run each day. This is to prevent someone from always being first or always being last. Today we were really early in the run orders. Tomorrow we will be really late in the order, like nearly last.

To increase efficiency and ensure that people run in the posted run order, at Championships they have this staging area set up. Using cloth barriers they create 3-4 waiting boxes. The first area contains some warm up equipment such as today we were allowed to warm our dogs up using a couple of hoops, a jump, a tunnel and a set of 6 weave poles. In our check in bag we were given a punch card that the warm up area steward punches each time we use it. From the warm up area you move progressively closer to the start line with your dog as the dogs ahead of you complete their runs. There are volunteers at each area to tell you when to move to the next area and when to hand over any treats or toys you would like at the finish.

Championships is also judged by multiple judges. There are 3 official on course judges that are hired by NADAC and don’t run any dogs at the event. Their sole job is the judge the championship rounds. Because the courses are so large and to allow for more flexibility in course design, there are usually 2 of these 3 judges judging each run at a time. One might be in charge of calls for the first half of the course and the other the second half or some such.

There are also judges who are official NADAC judges but who are running dogs at the event and volunteer to assist with certain jobs and classes. Such as there is one such judge to tell you when to take your lead off and begin your run. Or volunteer judges who assist with setting the courses. The official hired judges make the final calls and course tweaks but the volunteer judges play important roles at champs too.

The Championships course is really 2 nested courses. One that the elite, veteran and stakes dogs run. And another that the pre-elite and double digit dogs run. Stakes classes are really cool, I will go into those more in a future day’s post. So something for you to look forward to learning about. Here are the course maps from today:

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There is also an announcer for each dogs run. A few weeks before the event we were asked to fill out a questionnaire. The announcer uses that information to talk about you during your run. Things like where you are from, your dogs favorite toy, your dogs breed and age, etc. the announcer is careful to only say your dogs name right before and right after you run so not to risk being a distraction if a dog hears their name over the PA as they are on course. The announcer is a long time competitor which is nice as she personalizes it and you learn fun things about your fellow competitors and their dogs.

The other big detail about Championships is the days are long. Really long. For example zora and I ran at 10:15am and then again not until 4:30pm. We buggered out right after to go to dinner, but they were probably still running dogs at 8:30pm. Champs is a marathon not a sprint for sure.

Ok I think that’s enough nadac champs education for today. I will explain the scoring system another time.  Suffice to say, today was a really great day.  I’m so glad we came to champs this year! 🙂

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Happy smiling hubby and me waiting to go to dinner

 

NADAC Championships 2017 – pre trial day 2

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Today was the second and final day of the pre trial.  As I posted very early this morning my day started off a bit rocky.  But my husband is a dear and dropped Tom and I off at the trial sit at 5:30am.  He and Zora then returned to the hotel to sleep like people who can sleep well in hotels.

Because of his loveliness I was able to get a good 90min nap in my antigravity chair in the nice quiet crating area. 7am people were arriving with dogs so I woke up.  Then took a nice near hour walk around the property with Tom.  There is a great track that is I’m guessing based in time it took us to walk it and our usual pace near a 1/2 mile around.  So we walked that 4 times around.  The walk was great, I could feel my body connect to the earth again instead of the free floating feeling I’d been experiencing.  After our walk we returned to the crating area and Tom and I both go another nap in.

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Tom napping in our crating area after our walk

the rest of my morning was really chill.  I volunteered in a class to help.  I spent time just sitting in my chair.  I spent time sitting in my chair petting Tom.  Tom and I walked around some more.  I chatted with folks.  I got to play with a litter of mini Aussie mix puppies one of which, a really really nice pup is going home with a student of mine.  I’m so excited for them!  I had a good reconnect with my sensory system kind of a morning and early afternoon.  I think Tom enjoyed the 1 on 1 attention as well.

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around 2:30pm hubby and Zora arrived.  Just in time to run a round of jumpers.  I scratched us from the first round of jumpers and the mornings 2 rounds of hoopers. Zora was in crackerjacks, she’d basically been sleeping all morning in peace and quiet. It was a super fun non qualifying round.  We practiced our switch cues a lot that round.

Sometime between 3:30 and about 6pm we ran 2 rounds of chances and qualified in both. Our 2nd run was gorgeous, felt very in sync.  A great final round of the pre trial.

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Zora and I hanging out waiting to go into the ring to run 

after feeding the dogs, we were able to pick up our check in bag!  Full of some neat stuff!  First the bag itself is nice, a convenient keep sake tote bag.  Inside of it was a print out listing all of the competitors and judges for the competition as well as the sponsors of it.  There was also the commemorative t shirt which I really liked the design and most importantly the feel of and am looking forward to actually wearing.  Also included was a dog toy, some coupon cards, a cup, another tote bag, a clicker and some other miscellaneous items donated by sponsors.  Usually at every champs nadac gives out a special leash to each competitor.  This year instead of the leash we each of a personalized mini jump bar that is really cool and nice.  It’s done in the same theme as this year’s champs which is something about outer space which I’m not sure why that theme but it is.  I’m glad they switched to these as the leashes were nice but I’m rather particular about leashes and never used the one I got at my last champs all those years ago.

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We also picked out our team New England regional group shirt today as well.  I think we are all supposed to wear those tomorrow.

Today they also set up both the worker raffle and the state raffle areas.  The state raffles are incredible. Competitors from each state or region in attendance come together to donate items for their states raffle basket.  Folks can then purchase tickets to try to win the raffle.  I made a nice dog bed out of some purple upholstery fabric I had to go in the New England raffle basket.

As we were getting ready to leave some folks we know invited us to join them for a pot luck by their rvs.  We didn’t have anything to contribute to the pot luck but they forgave us. Lol.  It was nice to be outside with some nice folks eating hamburgers and such. A great way to end today.

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Hubby and I at the pot luck dinner

Tomorrow begins bright and early with the general briefing at 7am followed by everyones walk throughs of the course.  We are dog number 49 to run tomorrow.  Wish us luck!

Traveling with SPD

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It is currently 2:44am. And I am yet again awake. So a post about my realities when it comes to traveling with sensory processing disorder.

First can we talk about chain hotels? And how much I despise them? I’m being reminded this week why when we travel I nearly always arrange it so we are staying in an actual house with friends or family. Having not really stayed in a chain hotel for more than just a night in I can’t tell you how many years, I forgot how sensory unfriendly they are. The last hotel I stayed in for any length of time was a privately owned hotel in Maine on our honeymoon. Vastly different more positive experience that hotel.

What’s up with no thermostat in the rooms? Seriously. No thermostat means the furnace, fan, air conditioner runs constantly. Instead of being you know energy efficient and reaching the temperature the user sets then shutting off giving people like me a break from the noise, it runs constantly. Oh yes we could turn it off but then It gets super hot in here super fast and that brings a whole other bunch of issues.

Or I found when the furnace is turned off, I hear the irregular pattern of drips from the mini fridge. Why don’t hotels hide those in the bathroom or something? Or at least make them so I can unplug it for a few hours respite! I can’t unplug this thing. The plug is somehow built into the wall. The irregular drips of the mini fridge are worse for me than the constant hum of the furnace so the furnace is staying on. But they both make sleep a challenge and pending sensory overload a definite unless I figure some way to get a break.

Also fluorescent lights. Everywhere. Why haven’t they at least come into the energy efficient age of leds? The flicker. The hum. The glare. Fluorescent lights and I have a history. They get no love from me.

My current 3 in the morning plan is to make it to 9am. When I can probably guilt less convince my husband to get up. I could easily convince him to get up earlier he would do it for me for this reason without question, but I will feel guilty. This is his vacation too and he likes to sleep in. Have him drop Tom and I off at the equestrian center agility competition site where I plan to take Tom for a long long walk. As he hasn’t had one and he’s starting to drive me bananas. Also my nervous system will hopefully chill out a bit after a long walk. Hopefully. Then clean up and cool off in my friends rv. Move my chair to some quiet shady spot and hopefully take a nap without any man made hums or other irritating sounds. I will have my hubby take himself and zora back to this noise filled hotel room where they can amuse themselves and I don’t have to worry about them.

I have to walk at the equestrian center because of course chain hotels are never placed in any walkable environment. No sidewalks to be found. And even if they were there are tons of loud tractor trailers and car traffic. And there is no shade! Anywhere! Reminds me to never take for granted the number of trees we have in New England. There are so few trees out here. It is bright and glarey out which means even with my hat and sunglasses my visual system is freaking out. My saving grace is the barns of the equestrian center are all inter connected, don’t have fluorescent lights and are all incredibly well insulated and shady. Outside there are a couple of walk in stall barns that mean shade. Which I plan to use to sleep. But again no real trees.

If I want any fighting chance of staving off a sensory overload shut down or melt down (this one feels like most likely shut down will be the probable result) and the likely hood of a fibro flare up as well, and any chance of being able to compete with zora Thursday through Sunday, I think today is going to have to be a sensory focused day and a shelve the idea of dog agility today. Life with chronic conditions means adapting and taking the big picture view. Making choices. I’d rather have a chance to function Thursday through Sunday. Ignoring the sensory warning signs I’m getting right now would jeopardize that.

On the plus side I have people here who understand all of this and are great support. Mainly of course my husband but also folks like my friend Ben and some others who before the trip even began generously offered me the use of their rvs during the day if I need a break. SPD is hard for many people to understand, I’m always grateful I have so many people in my life who help and support when I need it. The dog agility community can be really awesome :-).

Also a note to myself: always travel with my compression vest!! Even if I haven’t used it at home in years. Never forget it when traveling!!!! The thought to bring it crossed my mind while packing but I thought in reply “naw, I’ll be ok, I haven’t needed that in so long”. Yea that was a misguided thought. It would be very useful right now.

NADAC Championships 2017 – Pre Trial day 1

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Today began day 1 of 2 of the pre-trial.  The pre trial is essentially a normal agility trial.  Similar to any weekend agility competition we might go to throughout the year.  The only difference is the location, i.e. At the same venue as the championship event which begins on Thursday.   The pre trial gives competitors a chance to acclimate to the arena, see how your dog does with the surface, and get a chance to get a feel for the equipment.

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The competition arena set up with 3 rings of agility

The pre trial today ran 2 rounds each of the touch n go, weavers and tunnelers classes.  Tomorrow is 2 rounds each of hoopers, jumpers and chances.

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The elite classes were huge!  Each nearly or over 100 runs!  So after we ran round one which was pretty quick and as the heights ran small to tall today, we had a good few hours before our next run.

I was pleased overall with both of our touch n go rounds.  We earned a qualifying score in each round and first place in our jump height.  so that was nice.  To me it felt like we were running our usual speeds and way but my husband said oh no she was smoking it out there!  And our YPS (yards per second) said that too!  Which was exciting

Because I can’t seem to figure out of to embed YouTube videos using my iPad here is a link to our touch n go round 2 if you would like to see it: https://youtu.be/URonU6cDcCI

our weavers rounds were definitely slower.  Round 1 the 3rd set of weaves she didn’t even realize they were there.  When I walked it and saw they were a set of solid dark green poles I thought, “hmmm….”   it was rather comical during our run.  As she ran past the set she turned slightly and went “Hey!  There are weave poles here!”  And started to weave at pole 3 or 4.  She had no clue previously that set of poles was there.  Round 2 though she found them and weaved beautifully.  Though on the first set in round 2 she popped out twice to sniff in the dirt.  She came back quickly but that was a bit annoying, 2nd time through that set though she stayed focused and on task  good girl.  I know we qualified with another first place in weavers round 1. not sure on our score yet for round 2 as we left for the day before they posted the results

Video link to our round of weavers: https://youtu.be/hGk-Qbujc-c

I decided to scratch the 2 rounds of tunnelers.  I was getting tired and starting to have sensory issues  and there was no real reason for us the run those.  Our touch n go and weavers runs gave me tons of useful data on how zora is running and doing in the arena.  So instead we took the dogs to the back fields to play whiffle ball and go for a little off leash walk.  Which was a nice way to end our day at the trial.

Tomorrow we are going to skip our morning runs at the pre trial day 2 and head back there in the early afternoon to run maybe chances and jumpers and then check in for the big event!  I hear they have some awesome surprises in our check in bags this year.  Can’t wait to find out what’s in store

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Zora standing with one of her purple qualifying score ribbons held up next to her head

NADAC Championships 2017 – set up

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After relaxing in our room most of the morning, a fire alarm going off got everyone up and outside. While the alarm blaring wasn’t fun (afaik it was a false alarm. Don’t think the fire department even came), it was nice that everyone was outside at the same time as gave us a chance to find out what other dog people are staying here too. Also found out there is a serene pond behind our hotel.

We ran into a chunk of the Maryland/Virginia crew a few who I know but haven’t seen in nearly a decade. I couldn’t believe some of their dogs who I last remember as pups or young adults are now running in double digits classes! (For dogs over age 10). Where does time go!

They had a few jumps, hoops and a set of weaves out in the large field next to the hotel and invited us to join them. Which was very kind of them. So had a good few minutes of warm up with the corgi. Then hubby and I played with tom and zora in the field. Meaning they were content to nap the early part of the afternoon while my husband also napped and I read some of a book.

3pm arrived and time to get ready to go to set up at the competition site! After feeding the dogs an early dinner, we were off.

Our hotel is a scant 6miles for the trial site but with various traffic lights takes between 15-20min to drive. I’m really really glad we chose to stay in this hotel instead of the one where some other folks we know are in, over 20miles away. It was a good decision!

The drive takes us past a few shopping areas, then into the corn fields. It really feels like we are in the Midwest now!

Here we are! Eden Park Equestrian Center. Our home for the next week.

The arena is huge!! Tomorrow and Wednesday there will be 2 rings set up for the warm up pre-trial, then beginning Thursday the back half plus will become the massive 100×300′ championship ring along with a smaller ring closer to the front for other runs. There are spectating bleachers off to the left side and an area that will be filled with vendors by Thursday.

The crating area I think is nice. Large. Plenty of room in the aisle ways and each person’s reserved area is marked out making them easy to find. The floor is dirt but we knew that already of time and brought a tarp to put in our space. Today there were many empty spaces, by Thursday it will be full! Behind the general crating area barn where we are set up, there is a barn with individual horse stalls inside that people could pay a bit extra to rent for the week and set up in instead. I think the general crating area will suite us just fine though.

The arenas are bordered by, you guessed it corn fields. There are horse paddocks on the other side, out of view from the dogs.

During set up I ran into many more people I used to know and haven’t seen in years. It’s going to be a fun week catching up! I’m excited to see who I remember and what dogs they have now.

After we set up, a quick grocery store run for some water, and now back at the hotel. So glad I roasted a turkey to bring with us, turkey sandwiches for dinner. Yum! I also got word that all of our various friends traveling have arrived safely which was good to hear. The corgi has now assumed her usual evening spot. As has Tom, at my feet. All is right with us.

NADAC Championships 2017 – travel and arrival

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Last night we arrived! We are here, in Ohio.

Our journey was rather uneventful, thankfully.

Not too early in the morning we finished packing the car. A good friend of mine offered to transport a couple of things for us as he has a much larger vehicle, for which I’m grateful. Meant packing our car was less of a precise puzzle.

What was a precise puzzle was the packing of the cooler. My husband said he would have been really amazed if he had any doubts I had already thought out and planned how to do it. Instead he was only amazed. I’m very good at packing. Lol. I spent the previous two days cooking and freezing in precise ways the food I am to eat this week. Strict dietary restrictions means eating out comes with risks, so for a trip like this were I don’t want to spend days sick recovering from something I ate and my body’s reaction to it, bringing food cooked and prepared in ways I know is safe for me to eat is a must. (The cheese sticks are for the dogs. I miss the convenience of cheese for sure)

Packing all set, one last busy break (toileting, “hurry up, go busy” is the dog’s verbal cue to toilet. Comes in handy often. Like every day often) and we were on the road.

My husband drove us safely through Massachusetts and into New York.

Where I was so excited that the highway paralleled the Erie Canal! It was awesome. There were even some boats in the locks we passed. Super cool! Husband wasn’t as impressed as I wished so I texted my family. They were as excited as I. And we all virtually sang the Erie Canal song. Low bridge, every body down, low bridge cuz we’re comin to a town….

Did you know that New York has renamed their rest areas as Text Stops? We found that a ridiculous comment on our current culture. Sad really. But so it is.

Our trip of course included more busy breaks. And as always I’m amazed and grateful that Tom finds great enjoyment in the challenge of finding the ladies rest room anywhere. Rest stops (ok, Text Stops I guess) he has of course never been in and yet he with a wagging tail and excited spring in his step “tom, find inside” and he smartly shows me the door. “Tom find the bathroom” and he weaves through the mess of people, tom pauses and I can feel him glancing around, “find the bathroom tommy, where is it? Find it buddy.” Suddenly hard turn to the left or right, and him striding forward clearly he knows where we are to go. Yup, here’s the bathroom. Good boy!

At 3:40p we arrived in Buffalo to visit and enjoy dinner at my friend Erica’s home. We all had a lovely visit with Erica and her partner Quinn. Great company, and the dogs enjoyed stretching their legs in their back yard. Erica cooked the most delicious dinner for us to enjoy. It was great to see her, as we talk on the phone often but due to the miles our in person visits are infrequent. And a nice couple hour break in our drive. Oh and I can’t forget to mention Erica’s cat, Hershey. Zora is his canine alter ego.

We got back on the road in time for the sunset.

A few hours later and more uneventful travel through the rest of New York, a corner of Pennsylvania and then Ohio! Where we checked into our hotel, and an exhausted and annoyed me found out despite my requests we are on the second floor in a hotel with no elevator and the only rooms on the first floor left were smoking room. in a choice between bad and worse for me I chose the stairs over the smoking room. Stairs at least tom can help me with. Smoking room would mean non stop migraine. But at least the room seems well sound proofed and the curtains keep the light out very well. the in room fridge is quiet, along with the furnace being as tolerable as they go. All rarities in hotel rooms. So a night of sleep was actually mostly had.

Today we get to have a low key rest and start recover day. The dogs have already been out and had their breakfast so now we are all relaxing. Later today we will head over to the Eden Park Equestrian Center where the event is being held to set up our area find out where we will essentially be living when we aren’t sleeping at the hotel for the next week. Woohoo! It’s really happening! NADAC Championships 2017 is here!!!

Waiting

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They know the sound.

Slam

Different to them than any other they might hear.

Suddenly now awake.

Noses to the front door.

Tom standing, Zora sitting both facing the front door

Waiting, waiting, waiting.

Tom standing, Zora sitting both facing the front door, closer to it now

Maybe it isn’t him?

Foot steps up the walk.

It’s him!!!

They do love him so. Super cute.

Border Collie Level

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My husband can be a very witty person.  He some how manages to consistently think quickly on his feet and still be funny.  I sometimes can do that but as he jokes, “yes and sometimes you even mean to.”   HaHa, very funny dear.  Sure sometimes he tries too hard, but more often than not his wit works for him.

It became quickly clear back when we were dating that I didn’t understand many of the jokes he was making.  I had a rather sheltered life and many of the things that somehow others picked up as common knowledge didn’t make it into my sphere until much later in life.  I’d never watched the Simpsons or many other TV programs many of my generation grew up with (heck as an adult when he and I met I didn’t even have a working TV), I had never seen an R rated movie, I had never really dated until him, and even in high school most of my friends or people I was close with were adults.

I don’t remember which comment but years ago there was some witty comment he made that I didn’t understand.  And I said something that “the only reference I know for that is border collies.”  When what he was meaning was definitely NOT related to border collies.  At all.  To which he laughed very very hard.  And from thence forth when my naivety shows for one of his remarks, we joke that he needs to explain as I’m operating on Border Collie Level.

One Cool Dude!

Monty my first cardigan welsh corgi in my old pickup truck, he’s wearing sunglasses.  People would mistake him for a border collie due to his markings, until he hopped out and they realized he had mighty short stumpy legs!  Monty was one Cool Dude.

via Daily Prompt: Witty