Sunday, February 20, 2011

I Love a (Plow) Parade

Nothing warmed my arena-chilled heart more than the sight of the plow parade, clearing my way home today. If only it could have taken a second to whiz down my street- my poor little Sunfire was apparently the only car to venture into the storm today, and it was not made for paving paths in snow. (We made it though, with the bonus win of getting to shovel the driveway. Yaaaaay!)

Of course, it wouldn't be the MAC USDAA show without a blizzard on Sunday. The last time this happened I stayed home, but since it wasn't white out conditions (yet) when I woke up, I decided to be a crazy Minnesotan and laugh in the face of incoming snow. VERY glad I did!

First- Saturday. Though I'd like to forget some parts.  It was a bit like the last show- contact nightmare. Weird issues I thought we had obliterated rearing their ugly heads.

We started with Jumpers- she ran well, clean, time was in 22. something range along with most of the class. Snookers was next and my favorite run of the weekend, simply because she let me do a lead out recall across the ring. She ran from the line, and came at pretty good speed despite being called off of a tunnel along the way. Exciting! So major for her- the last time I tried to do this she sat on the line refusing to budge.

Then the horrors came back. Grand Prix curse continues.  First jump good, then- refusal at #2 tunnel! GA! I assume she ran around the tunnel because we had just ran Snookers and she remembered being called off the tunnel. She is concrete sequential like that. I shoved her in the tunnel to continue after mentally cursing the curse (HA, take that, curse!) and then went to #3- the Aframe. HUGE miss. At that point I determined this was the last one I was putting up with, no fun was being had so I picked her up and exited stage left. Having never done that before, I really couldn't say what would happen in the next class: Standard.  Ok, she bizarrely blew her weaves, but her contacts were all really nice! And then in Gamblers, her contacts were awesomeness too!  I blew the gamble though (must remember, redirect Dog, then tell her where she should go. Bad Leader! I am sure she would have gotten it if I had done my job.).

We finished Saturday with Pairs on a crazy course with Black Dog. Both girls ran clean and The Dog was able to finish off her Bronze Pairs Championship thingy.  Goooooooaaaaaaaaaal (accomplished)!

Today, started off a bit rocky in Pairs (reverse order for classes). Aframe missed- something up there with spacing I think as she knocked the bar after too. But luckily, neither girl wasted any time and her super partner was squeaky clean so they did qualify.

In Gamblers, I was determined to hit the contacts and spend as long as it took to get the Aframes. I wanted her to remember her job, so we went to old standby helper commands from back when we started training the running contact. Success. She looked a but sheepish to me, like she knew what I wanted all along but was playing forgetful. Very nice opening, spot on gamble (to clarify, the awesome timing couldn't have been more accidental!) and second place.

And then... miracle!!! She ran clean in a Standard run! Nice contacts! Butt saved by her after getting separated by the judge!  So now she just needs one more for her Bronze ADCH. JOY!

We finished with Snookers and Jumpers. Both Qs. Missed weaves so no finish in Snookers but still a good opening. Crazy, unplanned, out of control, out of position China Jumpers run, somehow ended up clean? 3rd place even, which goes to show how well the remnants of the class went for everyone else!

So... over all good weekend? Still need to locate a gypsy to remove my GP curse. Still really need to train. And the winter has just made that small glimmer of getting outside soon vanish under 10 inches of fresh snow. Bye-bye, patch of grass. I will remember you fondly until you reappear again... someday.

P.S.  To think, this time next week I will have my new puppy here! Hope she likes snow!

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