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Sunday Double Feature

Sunday was an amazingly adventurous day for us, these days. It featured Mesa’s & my first herding trial in 3 years, and Tess’s first ever. That was the main plot, but there were some fun side stories too.

I originally entered on Saturday only. Then I needed to move it to Sunday so I could work Saturday. The calendar I looked at to plan this did not feature the change to DST. I, being older than some, am still in the we-do-that-in-the-spring groove and it never entered my mind until someone mentioned the time change midweek. To make the handler’s meeting south of St. Louis, I have to get up and leave at 4am. I’ve done it before, mildly painful but it works. Except when 4am is now 3am. And your alarm, set for 3am, autochanges at midnight so now 3am is 2am. Follow that?

Purina Farms is a decent venue with much improved stock. The ASCA club organizing this trial (GASC) is very friendly and organized. I was a little star-struck by the participants who featured a mind blowing (for my ‘little hat’ mind) accumulation of ‘famous’ names and people from all over the midwest seeking finals points for the Nationals in Colorado this year.

The weather featured water. It came out of the sky in buckets all day. I do not mean “it rained”…I mean full-on drenching buckets. You could almost hear the little gortex gasps as everyone’s rain gear started to give out after a few hours. It only let up for lunch and the afternoon awards. It rained so hard for so long that all I could do was laugh while slogging through the swampy fields, literally fording the overflowing torrent that is usually a covered creek crossing between the fields and parking lot, or trying not to loose a boot and stay upright in the inevitable overtheankle goop in the arenas. But it actually was workable and could have been SO much worse. It wasn’t cold and windy!

I was there to work on ME and give the dogs a successful trial (re)intro. And I did that with good success. There were times, once with each dog, where I lost touch with my goal. But I think I recovered and learned although I sacrificed a run (and really confused a judge) to do it. The problems weren’t things that would have kept us from qualifying, and my screwup with Tess had no effect on our score, just our handling, and will definitely cause need to be very careful in our next trial to avoid it becoming a real problem. Incidentally both dogs earned titles and brought home red and blue ribbons. Tess even got High Scoring Started in the afternoon. What fun to come home with baubles and titles!

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