Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Western Canadians

It's been 4 years since we've been in Cranbrook. When I signed up for the East Kootenay SDT in 2007, I thought Cranbrook was near Kelowna. When I told my dad this, he was quite alarmed (as it's about 6 hours from Kelowna, and about 12 hours from my house). I remember my dad meticulously wrote out directions on his little notepad while we sat at the BC Cancer Agency, waiting for his chemo appointment. I lost my dad a few weeks after that, and I always think of him when I think of Cranbrook.

This time, the trip to Cranbrook was to compete in the Western Canadian/CBCA championships. I knew it would be hot, and that the sheep would be tough, and that Lou is just a wee bit out of shape (reference earlier blog posts about his rigourous, pre-championship training). On balance, I'm happy with how he did. The outrun was short (maybe 385 yards) but the drive was quite long.

Before I sent him on his second go, I looked down at him (he has this disconcerting habit of staring STRAIGHT INTO MY EYES when he's at the post) and I thought of all the times we've been here, of how much fun I've had on this journey with him. I kind of got teary and whispered "Thank you". His eyes went wide with confusion and he flipped around to look behind him. Clearly, he was thinking "Great, she's changed my whistles twice, and now she's come up with new verbals too! What the eff flank was that?!?" Moral of the story: don't get maudlin at the post - it ain't the time or place.

Got to watch some great dogs, shoot the shit with people I see only at these kind of trials, and engaged in my favourite past-time:  trailer mooching.  I managed to get quite a few drinks, and some cheese and other snacks.

I've got a ton of pics, which I'll post later. In the meantime, here's one of the collies, relaxing against the stunning backdrop that is Pine Butte Ranch.

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