Well, I awoke at 2:30 drenched in sweat. Sheets were wet, so I check my sugar level. It was 121. No problem there unless it went down to far before dawn, but I didn’t think so. Finally, I got back to sleep.
Before breakfast this morning at 6:00 am, my sugar level was 130. There is the “Dawn Phenomenon.” I knew it would kick in.
Well, today is supposed to be DTC in the morning for morning routes in the neighborhood. We will eat at the mall in Bradenton. We will do afternoon routes there. This evening at 6:00 is the CPR we thought we were going to have Monday night.
We did obedience after breakfast. Joe did better with the distractions today. We then got our harnesses, “busyed” the dogs, loaded up to go downtown.
The routes we did at the DTC were in much busier streets and we went a good couple of miles in the heat. We left early trying to beat the heat and the humidity, but that is hard. I feel fine as far as the heat goes. It was only 94 in Bradenton today. Scott said it reached over 100 in the Macon area plus the heat index. I definitely am glad I am here as far as temperature goes. Joey hit the curbs right on the mark every time. He took me around poles and potholes I didn’t even know were there. Kate told me later. The only thing she missed was a palm tree branch sticking out into the sidewalk area at about ankle level. I hit it and snagged up. Kate caught me before I hit the ground. I said, “No” and popped his leash back in correction and quickly relaxed it. I pushed the branch with my foot and said, “Watch.” We then turned around and reworked it. It stopped for it, so I could scan for it and step over it. I praised him very well. His little tail began swinging wildly back and forth. I wish I could get a picture from the rear when we near a “curb”. Kate says that Joe starts wagging his tail in anticipation as soon as he spots something. He stops and wags even faster as I search. I better not forget a “party” when he is so excited about getting it. I would hate to disappoint him.
We went back to the Bradenton Mall for lunch and afternoon routes. After lunch, I waited for others while they did their routes. I finally asked a new trainer, Lynn, to take me to the restroom. Chris asked to go with us. Lynn quickly took off with Chris and Xcelerator behind her. Shoppers got in my way, so I lost sight of her. Joe however, took me right on behind her. I got confused in the maze of hallways and almost when in the men’s room behind Chris, but I finally made it. When I left the women’s room, I realized that Lynn had left me. As I stared at the fuzzy walls and shadows around me, I panicked. I couldn’t breathe, and fell back hugging the walls. I had no clue how to get back out. Now this might not sound like such a big deal to anyone, but me. However, I can’t hear much of anything and now I found myself surrounded by passageways alone. Fortunately I had prayed earlier about just these kinds of moments. Finally, words managed to seep through the fog in my brain. I could hear Kate telling me to think about where I was. Now align yourself with the wall and follow it to the end. I did and found myself at an intersection with hallways coming in all directions. I almost freaked again, but then a thought came. Ok. You came out of the restroom. Anyone coming past from there will be heading out, or anyone going in the opposite direction will be going to the restroom from the outside. Wait and follow them. Pretty soon, someone came by heading to the restroom. I went in the direction they came from. Great! It was just another passageway. I followed the wall to the end and rounded the corner. Ah! Another hallway or something. Ok, now there were choices in directions. Ugh! I was just about to panic or being unchristian like or something when someone rounded the corner. Oh, thank you, Jesus for that sign and keeping me from temptation. I followed the wall in that direction and eventually the light brightened somewhat and I heard the roar of the mall hitting my ears. I took a deep breath. I, of course, had no clue which way to go. I could only hope. Uh, Joe,find the seat. Off Joe went as followed his lead and prayed he wasn’t just going after a piece of hamburger under a counter somewhere. We made twists and turns, brushing near but not touching other people and trash cans, etc. Finally, he stopped and I realized, “Hey, Joe did it!” I cried with sheer delight. I was exactly where I started from. Now there were other people sitting in the chair, but it was the exact chair. Fortunately, Jerry was in the table at the left of us waiting for his route, so I sat there and told him of my wonderful experience. Joey is perfect for me… No doubt in my mind.
Our routes were cut short a little later. One of the dogs cut his paw on the escalator, so some left immediately. A few others waited until Katie returned with her students. I and Crystal did not get to go on the route and do escalators today, but I didn’t care. I had achieved something major here. I could wait til later for escalators.
We arrived back to the school to find out that Schotzie’s paw was fine. It bled some, but was taken care of by the on call vet. Nancy was excited as well. She told us how she had been waiting outside Dilliardâ€™s on a bench as another student was reworking some steps. A group of school children came by and immediately started yelling, “Look a dog, a dog!” Many came running up and tried to pet the dog. Of course, Cole didn’t mind. He was in a downstay beside Nancy. He immediately wagged his tail. Nancy politely told them that Cole was a working dog and could not be petted. The children, being about 7, began responding that he couldn’t be working because he was just lying there on the floor. With a chuckle, Nancy explained what she meant by working and how petting him could distract Cole from his duty of guiding and safeguarding her. Nancy was very pleased when they obviously understood and wanted to know more about guide dogs and how to treat blind people and working dogs, etc. Nancy spent about 15 minutes talking with the children. They all promised to be careful when they saw a working dog not to distract it from its duty. Nancy was quite pleased with herself, and we were pleased with her as well.
After supper, we had a class on taking care of our dogs. We learned to use tick preventative once a month and heartworm preventative, too. We brushed our dogs’ teeth and cleaned their ears. I have been concerned for Joe. His ears keep getting dirty despite me trying to clean them out one other time this week. I used three gauzes to try and get the dirt all out. After that we even learned how to do mouth to snout CPR and rescue breathing. Rita Princivalli, the graduate director, taught the class. She had a large stuffed Dalmatian with brailled arteries and sacs attached to a hand pump to help us learn CPR. It was incredibly fun and useful.
I finished at 7:30 to join Scott on X-Box Live for our 20th Anniversary date. He sent me to our private website that has screen captures of our house security camera system. On the rear, the camera showed a large sign with the words: Happy 20th Anniversary. I love you scrawled across it. That was a perfect present being so far away. We talked until about 9:00 when I had to go to bed.
I am just finishing this up as I get really sleepy. See you tomorrow.