Thursday, 15 May 2014

A busy week?

Well, here I am back again. Actually I've been back since late Tuesday but have been rather knackered so haven't been on my computer that much. Actually I think it was the 100's of emails I got on my return that made me feel even more tired than I really was and put me off using my computer, but I've braved the email glut and all is in order now.

The retreat went really well with absolutely amazing feedback. I'd never held one at Lendrick Lodge before, or even been to anything there, but as they'd given me a special deal I thought I'd give it a go as my usual retreat space on Holy Isle off Arran wasn't available on the dates I could do. It was a lovely space right in the heart of the Trossachs, but we all felt it was a bit like going to a B&B place rather than a retreat centre. Still, it wouldn't put me off going back, but next year we're booked into Holy Isle again so it'll be back on familiar territory.

Part of the grounds at Lendrick Lodge

After walking up the hill this was the view

This is the River Retreat where our group were

I got home to an Odi welcome of labrador-type curling around and around my legs. She has an extremely expressive face and seemed to have a huge grin. It was lovely to be back. She seems to have grown up a lot in the time I've been away as her season had finished and she seems far more settled. Of course it could've been due to the attentions of the dog minder, but whatever, there's still been a change.

Yesterday morning I got up early to have a fab massage with Dorthe from the next village who's been sorting my back for me. A great way to start the day. Then, in the afternoon, Odi and I went into Edinburgh to go to the solicitors and sort out some details and from there on to a meeting of the charity that I'm on the Board of Directors of. Odi behaved wonderfully, but after about an hour she did get a bit antsy so I gave her a hide bone, which she chewed enthusiastically... and very loudly! It was actually quite funny. Still I was pleased with her and the rest of the Board were very impressed.

Whilst I was away I had a message on the answer machine from the Puppy Supervisor who asked me to bring Odi into Cameron Toll shopping centre in Edinburgh today. I thought she said it was for training purposes and to go round the shops with her best friend Nancy. Although Alec (Nancy's puppy walker) had offered me a lift I had to make another visit to the solicitor to sign some papers so went separately.

We were a touch late and arrived to not just the PS and Nancy and Alec, but also an assessor. Apparently today was the day that Odi was to be assessed to see if she could pass the first stage to become a brood bitch for Guide Dogs.

The only problem was that the moment Odi saw Nancy she completely forgot that she'd become settled and grown up and instead went absolutely mental and pulled me so hard I slipped and fell down at the feet of the PS, the assessor and also the stall that's at the shopping centre offering people assistance if they've had an injury. There was nothing much but a bruised hand, a bruised thigh and a bruised pride, but not the best way to engage with an assessor and absolutely not the way to impress the PS. I was surprised the guys on the stall didn't rush to give me assistance and a card, but they didn't.

Still, we came away with the nod that Odi's to go onto the next stage and she did eventually settle down and walked sensibly.

Then it was off to the solicitor's. It's quite amazing really... Odi has a great memory and totally knew the door and led me straight there. I can only hope the blind person that gets her (if she passes) won't live in Edinburgh or they might well find themselves dragged to my solicitor's office, let alone the shops I visit. The solicitor seemed quite pleased with the whole idea!

We had to rush home because Lynne, who puppy walked Teddy (who's now gone to Guide Dog big school) was coming over with her new puppy Tweedy. I'd actually got the wrong time written down and so was a little taken by surprise as I was sipping my soup when the doorbell went. It was lovely to see them and Odi had a great time rushing about with Tweedy.

Odi and Tweedy

Tomorrow Odi and I are off to the King's Theatre in Edinburgh as they've arranged a visit for Guide Dogs and I think there are 6 going. Nancy's going too, so Alec and I have arranged for them to get together for play before heading to Edinburgh in the hope that they calm down a bit and behave reasonably. I'll let you know.

So, it's been quite a week. And now I sit nursing my right hand and hoping the bruising isn't too bad. In some ways I think I was lucky I didn't break anything. Have to look on the bright side I think!


  1. Hope your hand is feeling better. I did wonder at what points puppies get assessed for suitability. What happens to the puppies that fail? Or shouldn't I ask??

    1. Hand is on the mend, but my thumb is a bit sore :(

      Odi was being assessed as a possible brood bitch not as a Guide Dog. If she doesn't make it for breeding then she'll go off when she's around 13 months to go on training and assessment for around 20 weeks at the centre in Forfar.

      If they don't make it as a Guide Dog they can go as sniffer dogs/buddy dogs/dogs for hearing/dogs for disability that kind of thing and if they don't make that then they get offered as pets and we would get first refusal... I've told Odi in no uncertain terms that she's not coming back... but as usual I don't think she's listening! I'd rather not even think about it!