It Snowed! It's November in North Carolina, and it snowed last night! I got up this morning and sent the dogs out while I found some shoes and a coat (I thought it had rained) and when I walked out the back door I almost had a heart attack. This is the beautiful kind of snow... you know, the kind that covers the grass mostly but leaves the streets clear? The dogs had a ball - and Linc was running around bulldozing it with his nose. I wish I had pictures, but that wasn't on this morning's agenda.
I have agendas, by the way. Schedules, agendas, the Way. Things. Should. Be. Whatever you want to call it. I have trouble sometimes being adaptable, but I'm trying to be moreso these days. So, on this morning's agenda was to finish packing and getting cooking items together so that I'm ready to make chili for tomorrow's hang-out-with-friends-and-work-dogs day. Should be fun, and the chili should be hot. It's only supposed to get up to 41 tomorrow - which in my book is butt-crack cold.
So since I'm off track anyway I'll talk about dogs. Spottie is adjusting to being with me fairly well. It's not all that unusual for a dog to take some time to work for a different handler, by the way, and it can't be easy for her adjusting to a new home either. She's being such a trooper, really.
The big news is that yesterday she worked for me. I went down to Julie's at lunchtime, and while Julie stayed inside I took her into the roundpen. She went right to work - never even blinked. I was feeling encouraged, so I took her on out into the big pasture with the main flock. As we drove around the corner she slammed on brakes, her head popped up, and she ran back around to the roundpen. So, I stood where I was and waited. After a minute or so I called her, and she came running, and went right back to work.
After that she was working for me pretty nicely. Later on I worked her for Robin, who hid in the van. Heee! I was a little afraid she'd be looking for Robin knowing she was there, but surprisingly she didn't. I'd say we're not 100% together yet - but the difference from Sunday to Thursday is just staggering to me. I think we're really going to have a lot of fun together - she's a blast. I think we're going to mesh just fine.
Nick was looking really good yesterday. We did a good bit of sorting and shuffling sheep around, which he loves. I didn't fool with any shedding (giving him a break) and he's taking his whistles really nicely now. Tomorrow we'll hopefully get to do some setting out, which he loves to do. It makes him very happy. Pushy, but happy. Linc was a big of a booger, and the sheep were just a little too light for him, so it was a bit of a frustrating session with him.
We've got a busy few weeks coming up. Lots of dog working, and a few trials. I'm running Nick in Nursery in Cowpens, SC, December 5th. If Spottie looks good this weekend I'm planning to run her in Open down there that weekend too. Uh... this would be *my* debut into Open, a fact that makes me want to throw up. But still, this has been a year for doing things I've been afraid of, so why not? I'm also considering entering one or both of them to run Open Cattle up at Roy Johnson's December 13th. Since I'm farm-sitting over Thanksgiving I should be able to get plenty of good dog-working in. I'm looking forward to it!
editing to add...
I'd like to now take back the "Yay, it SNOWED!!!" enthusiasm, please. Now the snow is gone, and I'm left with a wet, muddy mess. That makes for 24 wet, muddy, icky paws trampling around, which makes for quite a disaster. Why is it that melting snow makes for more mud than rain does? Is it like... punishment for the fun gained by making snowmen and snow angels? If so, I don't deserve it because I did none of the above. So, I'd like to offer up my serving of mud to benefit the greater good, please. Thankyouverymuch.