Saturday, May 2, 2015

Herding clinic...

I took Ziva to a herding clinic today. It was a flawless spring day, blue skies, warm temperatures and a light breeze. The air was stitched with tree swallows darting about, a solitary hawk soared past a time or two, and a pair of screaming crows stopped everything when they filled the air with their protests. We've had so little sun that sitting there as the sun shone down, among the people and animals, felt like a rare gift.

There were 10 dog handlers there, and 14 or so dogs. Shetland Sheepdogs, Border Collies, Australian Shepherds,one smiling Rottweiler and a pair of Cardigan Corgi's taking a weekend off from the show ring, dotted the greening grass. The instructor was delightful, peppering her informative chat with good humor. She has Belgian Tervuren's, beautiful and well behaved.

Ziva was a bit of a brat, barking endlessly when left in the shady car, and grumbling rudely at other dogs.
But she liked the sheep.

The instructor said she clearly had the instinct to herd. She began introducing her to commands, and teaching her move the sheep around the ring. I thought she acted pretty badly, but the instructor told me she did fine.

I had to leave early because we were having people over to watch the Kentucky Derby. Chris had been home cooking all day. He had made macaroni and cheese and his famous deviled eggs, as well as smoking a home raised chicken, a pork shoulder and a few slabs of ribs.

We feasted while we watched the race. My choice, American Pharoah, won... too bad we didn't place bets!

My day to day life tends to be pretty much the same from start to finish, and I like that. I enjoy the rhythm and the consistency. But it was fun to depart from the normal and do new things with my dog, and to have a house full of people; talking, laughing and enjoying good food. Tomorrow I will wake to a tidy house and a refrigerator full of delicious leftovers. It will be a good day, too!

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