Saturday, June 11, 2011

rain, dogs, and music

This morning's herding clinic was a beautiful mess. Four hours round trip, pouring rain, novice sheepdogs, and beginner handlers. All of us there were green, with the kind of questions new herding enthusiasts have about the sport of sheepdog trials. Do I lose points if they circle back around the post on the fetch? Can I give a command at 11 o' clock on the outrun to slow her down? If I miss the drive gates should I keep going? What do judges do if I run out of time at the pen? It sounds like gibberish to normal people, but to those of us willing to stand in the angry June rain at 8AM, it was just conversation.

Gibson and I just watched. He's too young to be out there running a mock trial. Maybe someday. I went to watch, listen, and learn. There's just as much to absorb watching other people's dogs as training your own. We'll certainly be back for more. I can't wait to train with Dave Sykes again. I was at his clinic in 2008, without a dog, and I promised him next time I saw him I would have a pup. I doubt he remembers me—he travels all over the world doing these things—but if he does, I'll be there to share the smile.

I am so tired and happy. I just helped wrap up an amazing evening here at the farm house. My friend Wendy held her birthday party here, and invited friends from Saratoga to join in for dinner, drinks, and old-time tuns at the sheep-and-pony show. She also imported some omusician friends. Just a bit ago this house was thumping into the soggy night with singing, laughter, drinks, fiddles, guitars, and me dancing with Gibson by the chimneyless wood stove in the living room. Candles inside the Bun Baker helped light up the room.

More later, come morning. But here's a teaser for you: No one should have had to warn me about using the lawnmower too close to the beehive....

Turns out they should have!


Blogger daisy g said...

It's great to hear you so happy. Love that Gibson boy!

June 12, 2011 at 6:43 AM  
Blogger Cary said...


June 12, 2011 at 6:55 AM  
Blogger doglady said...

And the end result was what?

June 12, 2011 at 7:03 AM  
Blogger PMcNemar said...

Sounds like you had a lovely day of it. I bet it's so exciting to be prepping for herding trials. Best of luck, I'm sure you'll do great when you're ready!

June 12, 2011 at 7:10 AM  
Blogger Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

Bee hives reputedly contain bees.

Bes reputedly use stingers.

Future not looking bright.

June 12, 2011 at 11:19 AM  
Blogger Nicole said...

I am so jealous...I took my border collie Luna to test her on her herding abilities. It's a natural talent and it was the coolest thing to see. Unfortunately, the trainer lives an hour one way from my house and it just not realistic for me to drive that far on a weekly basis, but I won't give up! Someday. Can't wait to hear more about your training adventures!

June 12, 2011 at 11:56 AM  
Blogger Kaat said...

Is it a gas mower? They dislike the small of gasoline more than the noise (vibration). Our electric mower never gets a peep out of them.

June 12, 2011 at 11:57 AM  
Blogger Lynnanne said...

sounds like you may have gotten to know your bees on a personal basis. :)

June 12, 2011 at 12:03 PM  
Blogger jim said...

bees can also out run "John Deere's"-want to know how i know?

June 12, 2011 at 2:36 PM  

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