Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Bad News

There will be no pictures in this post.  There in no joy in Mudville.  Mighty Casey has struck out.  In fact he didn't get to the plate.  They called his name but he wasn't there.
He'd come up with an excuse, if he could, but there are none.

Casey might say he'd been captured by Gypsies.  Or he might mention the creek that was washed out and how he had to swim down stream to save those kids.  He thought about saying he interrupted an armed robbery at the Quick Trip and was shot.  He wondered if anyone could really believe the truth.  He just miscalculated the time and missed his run.  He left the trial field after the first 21 runs which took four hours.  He planned to be back in three and came in two and a half.  He did not plan that there would be lots of dq's.   When he got back they were closing the ball park. 

Is he embarrassed?  You bet.  Ashamed? You bet.   He didn't strike out, he never got to the plate.  

So this is the last post in the "Most excellent adventures of Bob and Belle".  All in all done.  All over. Kaput.

I've decided not to harm myself.  People still need me in their lives.  I still have some worth, some where, some how.  I'm thinking next time I'll get a clerk, you know, someone to watch over me.  Or perhaps next time, a strong rope.  I'll tie myself to the fence and not loose it till time to run. 

I'm thinking between the kidding and the "what were you thinking" I'll be hearing in the coming weeks I'll suffer enough.   I have inventoried my life.  My wife still loves me.  My dog thinks I'm fine.   My kids are healthy and good men.,
And most importantly, I still have my looks.

The real question if what do I do next.  The universe doesn't care about my travails.  But, I do!  I'm thinking this is not a sign.  It has no meaning.  It's an event not a pronouncement.  My job is to journey on.  Greet the next day.  The Sun'll come up tomorrow and all that kinda crap.

Listen my peeps.  You mean a lot to me.  I like telling you this stuff.  Even sharing this "ugly thing" with you eases my pain.  Thanks.  I'm thinking I want to keep you in the loop.   Mighty Casey has a life.  He just might be telling you more about it next time.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Trial begins... First Full Day Complete

Belle sits below, awaiting out exit to Colorado. It's a good representation of her and our other dog Will.  I'm thinking based on his look he wanted to go also.

The first day of the week long trial is over.  Nursery has not started.  Open has started and they completed 38 runs today.  They will run the same number each day for two more days to get the first runs in.  Then top third I think run then the top twenty run on Sunday.  I will run tomorrow near the end of the day in Nursery.  I will update everyone as soon as I know anything.

Above is the trial field.  It's 440 yards or a quarter mile from the handlers post to the set out.  This pic is of the open field.  I will post a picture of the nursery trial field tomorrow.  It will be a 340 yard outrun.

Below you can see Belle's entry.  I'll bring home the book for Tom and Ruth  but you can see I hope the listing showing them as owners.  Also shows the breeder Glen.

Below are four seperate shots merged into one panorama.  It's puts to much emphasis on the front of the photo but it still represents the site.  It's like a little city.  More handlers are arriving as some didn't even have a dog running till the second or third day.  By this weekend it should be a third more crowded with handlers and by this weekend the spectators will be huge.

I mentioned Gucci West.  In the picture below you see the trial field is surrounded by hills.  On these hills are big resort type houses.  They have the best view of the field but don't the rich always get the best?   There is a tug of war between the ranchers and the developers out here.  One wanting to maintain the pristine wilderness and one wanting to build houses for the vacationing second home types.

I am feeling good about our run tomorrow.  I had my time in the practice field this afternoon and Belle did just fine.  I was surprised she didn't mind the big woolies and they moved off her just fine.

The open handlers have either had the white house or the out house.  The scores have been awful or just fine thankyou.  There's been no middle of the road scores.  The sheep will stop and graze if the sense weakness and fight or run if the dog pushes to hard.   The best handler of the last 10 years is Alistair McCrae and he had sheep that fought him all the way and did not score well.  Last years Chamption did fine with a high score.  Our friend from Texas Allison Holmes had a nice run that will surely get her in the next stage. 

On my run tomorrow my biggest fear is she won't go far enough but she does take a redirect well so maybe it'll work out.  But I saw so many wrecks today by open handlers I'm not worried to much about tomorrow.  Wish me luck and thanks.

Monday, September 12, 2011

On the road to the Nationals

The road to the finals started a little over two years ago when Glen Christianson bred his female Em.  Pictured below.
Em is a hard pushing cow dog and Glen has done well with her in trials as shown below.  Glen is the handsome guy in the Middle.

     In sheep they say the ram is half the crop and the ewe is half the lamb.  Glenn's Em is half our Belle.  He deserves some recognititon.  He talked Hines into taking the pup Belle.

But Sunday Morning came so we loaded up.  Me and Belle and Teresa taking the picture below. 

No more training.  No more books.  No more teachers ugly looks.   Got to go get'r'done.

Sunday night we stay in Trinidad Colorado.  It's an old mining town.  Most of the old towns in Colorado were settled long before the Oklahoma Runs were made so you get a sense of history from the buildings.  Below is a view from the Motel we stayed it.  Not bad.  There are 54 fourteeners(mtns over 14K feet) in Colorado and this isn't one of them.  But still, it has some presence.

     And Sunday night our first meal wasn't bad.  Friends of ours named Mike and Martha like to eat at places with local flavor.  So even though it's Sunday evening we start driving around Trinidad looking for something that wasn't a chain.  We eliminated the usual Chinese restaurants and finally came upon Bob and Earl's Good Food as Always cafe.  Some cars were there and we were full of hope and hunger so we took a chance.
      Over Teresa's shoulder featured below you see the sign of a good eatery.  The evenings special is printed on the white board wall.  But I positioned myself so I could see into the kitchen and the cook and his helper looked pretty serious.
      It turned out fine.  They say food is appreciated by three classes.  The poor who say after a meal, "Did you get enough?"  The middle classers who say, "Was it good?"  And the upper class who say,  "That is a lovely presentation."   Teresa is the middle and she says,  "It was mighty tasty."  She looks pretty after 44 years of being married to me. 

     Monday morning we leave Trinidad and after an hour we start up the mountains instead of driving along in the valleys.  Below is our start up the Rockies, and it's not a bad view.
     Below we reach the Continental divide.  All it really means is water runs one way on one side and the other way on the other side.  Frankly, the climb up on the no guard rail goat lanes were too much for me.  I'm not a sissy but I am a scaredicat.  Plus after about 7k feet I dont breath so good so I stopped at 12k feet only long enough to take the picture then accelerated over the edge to the western side of the Rockies.  I don't know how they breath that high.


       It's not long and we come upon this gorgeous Aspen grove pictured below.  It was breath taking.  Felt like you were in some Eden forest.  Worth the whole trip.  The picture below does not convey the scope of it.
      Then it's on down further to Aspen and Carbondale where we are now.  I'll tell more about that tomorrow.  But I will say I was expecting the wild west.  It's more like Gucci West.  Fine houses everywhere.  Jet planes at the airports.  Horse ranches deluxe.  This is a far cry from the country boy's raising.

     The last picture is at the trial location.  We're up the field looking back down across the open field and it's not a great picture but all the white spots are some of the 90 RV's they expect here.  It's like a little city. 
I'll get some pictures of the nursery field tomorrow.  It rises towards the West.  I may be looking into the sun the entire run.   It's big.  I may have said 350 but now I'm thinking it might be 400.  I was nervous when I first viewed it but, "what the heck...  I paid my money I'll take my chances.