Today Katie and I went to our 2nd USDAA trial with Diva and Annie, and Phira came too just for the ride.
The day started way too early, having to get up at 4:55am to get all the chores done and everyone loaded in the car for 5:45. We left in the dark like thieves in the night...It was nice watching the sun come up as we drove out of the foothills. I made a mental note to check start times and distance before I make my entries! It's not like it was a super long drive (just 1 1/2 hours, but there are so many trials around that I just don't need to drive that far that early for an outside one!
We had an interesting day..
We got there without Phira throwing up...that's definitely a plus, and was good way to start!
The first thing I learned is yes you do have to check your almost 13 year old's choice of footwear-I should have known better when she took every minute she had this morning getting glammed up for an agility trial? I had this thought as we were driving to the trial this morning "what's she wearing on her feet"? Sure enough we get there and she's wearing some kind of flats. Just where did she get these genes from? I think she learned why I nag at her about her footwear choices though when she slipped and fell on the wet grass in her standard run. Happily she got to her feet quickly none the worse for wear.
Katie ran first with Diva in regular and I was very perturbed. They did the first jump and got on the dog walk and stopped, and I mean a standstill. I thought Katie had lost her mind. Apparently Diva was gagging on something. Once recovered from this she ran fairly well until she got to the table. Diva forgot how to down. We obviously need more practice at quick drops on that table. The rest of their run wasn't bad but Diva messed up in the weaves-always a rough spot, and Katie wisely chose not to worry about it.
Highlights: Diva did the chute and the tire jump!
Annie's run was decent but she was definitely not connected with me-she was looking everywhere. Outside trials have so many distractions for her. I had to work very hard at her turning with me and not taking whatever was in front of her. She knocked a bar (really Annie, 16" jumps and you knock a bar?). She was slow on the down at the table, and somehow got on the wrong side of me at the weave pole entrance (I don't think I was in her face enough). I believe she also ran by the last jump and I had to bring her back for that.
Highlights: Hmmm..not sure there are any there. She made time despite her bobbles?
Next I learned that mosquitoes do come out after torrential rains. I couldnt believe there were so many mosquiotes out so late in the year. I was happy when the sun warmed things up and they went into hiding.
Our next run was snooker. Katie had a good run going but got befuddled and sent Diva into a tunnel out of order and so wasn't able to do the closing. Diva just stopped once to look for me.
Annie was ADD. We did our opening line but then got to the far end of the pen and she stopped to watch a border collie playing frisbie. I was worried she might bolt, but after what seemed like an eternity (and probably just a second or two) I got her headed back on course. I had to really play blocker as she was intent on doing whatever was in front of her and not turning with me. We got the the 2nd to last obstacle and I lost her coming out of the tunnel. I let my guard down for just one second and she was over a jump that she wasn't supposed to do. The good news is we had enough points to Q-not bad considering this was our first snooker run ever.
We then had a long break and my daughter decided she'd have a nap in the car listening to some tunes. I watched the steeplechase and was really awed by how quick the handlers were in getting their Q's out and getting in the right spot. My chair was right in front of a particularly tough section where the dogs came full board down a line of jumps and then had to do the back side of a jump and turn away from the handlers direction. It was interesting watching what worked and what didn't.
I enjoyed just sitting doing nothing for a couple of hours-this isn't something I get to do often. The day was beautiful and the venue pretty. We took the dogs for another walk and Annie saw a bunny-she was crazy! It was all I could do to drag her away.
Our last class of the day was the jumpers run. Diva ran pretty well for Katie but Katie stopped at a jump confused about which was next and cost some time. They were clean but 1.69 seconds over time.
Annie was tired mentally at this point in time. I had a hard time keeping her focused. She got through but slowed down drastically in one corner, and then I lost her coming out of a tunnel, she didn't do the jump in front of her (after doing them all day, now was the time she decided not to!). I was in good position so I'm not sure why she ran by other than being tired (And being Annie). I had to loop her around, and we got done but were 0.16 seconds over time. Geesh.
I have to work on handling her out of tunnels-seem they are always the precursor to our problem. Perhaps I'm not vocal enough leaving it up to her to decide on what to do next?
We packed up and went to leave. I turned my keys in the ignition and nothing. Hmmph...car is in park, what gives. I did it again nothing...I turned to Katielyn "did you leave the radio on". Her .."uh yes". The battery was dead. We went in search for a boost and found someone with cables.
Next lesson: You can't boost someone with a Prious! Happily we found someone without an electric car, got started and were on our way.
We were pretty happy with the day despite only coming home with one Q. The dogs worked pretty well, most of Katielyn & Diva's problems were caused by Katie, and mine were typical Annie.
Phira was fun. We practiced some directionals through the practice jump (without a bar) and played chase out in the field. She was awesome.