This reminded me of another incident. Some years ago I had been at a difficult meeting. Afterwards a colleague asked me how it had gone. Instead of my text saying; “their was allot of long faces.” it came out as; “allot of long faeces.” I did say it had been a difficult meeting.
Sunday 12 August 2018
Sunday 29 July 2018
Saturday 28 July 2018
I can’t believe that was a year ago when I had my first test walk. The thing was, I couldn’t tell anyone. It was all very secretive. The final decision hadn’t been made whether major would be my new Guide dog or not. Something that was made very clear to me when I met the instructor outside Queen Street station in the centre of Glasgow. I was told in advance of our meeting that Major was a cross Shepherd retriever, on paper he looked like a good match. It was all very clandestine, because the Guide Dog Association didn’t wish to over commit themselves encase it didn’t work out. After all, Major was only 17 months old and had just been collected from the dog trainers in Forfar by the instructor, who would finish off his training and do the match up with the blind handler. Hopefully me. At that stage things could still go wrong, so I understood their reluctance to commit.
For the first time in over a year I held on to the handle on the dog harness and off we went whizzing around the merchant city. It felt strange after such a lengthy break. The longest time I had experience since being trained with my first dog over 30 years earlier. When I first got my hands on Major, he didn’t feal anything like a shepherd. No pointy ears. he didn’t feel anything like a retriever either. Major did guide like a shepherd. That’s hard to explain. Shepherds are very definite in their moves. For example They read a situation far further ahead than a Labrador. They are also very driven. When they find a door, by god you know. Straight in with no hesitation. They are also brilliant at finding pelican crossings. Incapable of making a decision, That’s not the Shepherd way.
After a couple more test walks around my home area the decision was made that my training would go ahead in the August. one year on from that first walk, he’s been a fantastic guide dog so far. I’m not saying we’ve not had our challenges, but that is true of every new guide dog partnership. Months go by and you realise your bad days get further and further appart. To such an extent, I can’t remember our last one. I hope I’m not jinxing myself with that statement.