Bindi and I went to the first of the Canine Good Citizen classes today, and we didn't do too well. In fact, the trainer said we should take the beginner class again, because I HAD FORGOTTEN SO MUCH, and Bindi was confused by my commands. So I guess it's a good thing that we're back in school.
What was amazing is that there was an older man there with his golden lab Max, and we were doing an exercise where two people with dogs walk up to one another and greet and learn to have the dogs not interact with one another until we allow them to. This man's voice was SO familiar, and it hit me: "Bob?" I said. He looked puzzled. "Dr. Bob?" I repeated. He said, "Yeah." I said my name, and he said, "Oh, hi!" He was my vet for a long time, but I stopped seeing him 7-8 years ago. He had a stroke when I was still taking my animals to him, but recovered sufficiently to continue practicing. Today I asked him if he had retired (we're about the same age). He said he was managing the practice, but not doing clinical work, that the tremor in his right hand had become much worse, and although he had "worked" on it, he felt it was no longer viable for him to practice. The woman he had worked with for 25 years killed herself a little over a year ago, and since I had not seen him since that terrible event, I gave my condolences. He said, "She was like my daughter," they had worked together so long. So today's meeting was bittersweet, to say the least.
I went to the country fair in the park after class, the one held every year at this time, where my community garden is. It was such a beautiful day, and my eyes took in the atmosphere and interest of plants for sale, a scarecrow-making booth, some Morris dancers with their 'kerchiefs a-flying, a rock climbing wall, a bungie jumping machine, a petting zoo, snow cones, the food tent, the tag and book and bake sales, the Bonsai exhibit, the silent auction, the community garden sellers, and the Clydesdale horses taking people for rides in carriages. It was all so festive.
Except for Bindi. She was out of control. She would bark ferociously at other dogs, and especially the Clydesdales. She pulled on the leash, and would not do anything I commanded her to do. I guess she had had enough stimulation for the day, and I probably should have just taken her home after class, but I wanted to stop in the park. I spent $2.50 at the tag sale, and several more bucks on food. Although I did not take photos in the park, here are some other photos from my day.