For The Love Of A Dog

Tuesday morning I laid in my bed, at Anna’s house in Germany, thinking how strange it was that I was there, with Solar, for an agility competition.  Should I feel guilty for dragging my dog all over the planet to do agility? I do, a little, but I also know that Solar would sign on the dotted line if I could explain to him WHY we were going on airplane trips all over the world.  Solar was pressed up against the back of my legs, spooning me in bed, and it was so comfy, I just had to keep laying there. There’s something so amazing about travelling with this dog – the further afield we go, the more connected I feel, maybe because the less and less everything stays the same, the more the constant of our connection stands out in stark contrast as the thing to depend on. It’s all so crazy, and so amazing.  SO amazing.

I’m chasing the high, the hit, the awareness and clarity that comes from that 30-40 seconds in the ring together when things just flow together. And like any addict getting deeper in to their addiction of choice, I’m giving up more, going farther, spending more money, and putting myself in increasingly higher and bigger situations to get the same hit.  It’s a BIG hit 🙂  The same hit I get laying in bed with my dog, of course, which one would think I could do just as well in my bed in the USA…although not quite so intense. SO amazing, SO crazy, SO addicting…

In any case, I’m looking forward to the European Open.  It’s a NEW experience, and I love a new experience.  The uncertainty of it all really adds to the experience for me.  Last minute packing, barely organized trip, tent camping, staying with Anna, all such a great experience! And to think, years ago, if I hadn’t been wearing a shirt I got in Norway in 2007 that I exchanged with a German Team Member, and if Anna hadn’t seen me wearing that shirt at a trial, she never would have introduced herself to me, we wouldn’t be friends now, and I wouldn’t be at her lovely house, with her lovely family, getting ready for a road trip.  Amazing how things come together!

Today I did a little ‘real’ tourism, after I got myself out of bed.  We went to Bergen-Belsen, where Anne Frank met her demise.  What a horrid, horrid, depressing experience.  Wow.  Just unfathomable.  Luckily, Anna had scheduled us a visit with her dog Jive’s breeder, who had a litter of very cute puppies on the ground.  Puppies, just the antidote to the Holocaust.

After visiting the puppies, Anna and I went to her local training club and practiced with some club members on some tricky courses. Fun! Solar did some amazing turns off the dogwalk; I was very pleased with how he did, and it was nice to see that some of our more recent training has paid off.  We’ll see how this upcoming weekend goes 🙂

Tomorrow (oops, today) Anna and I head out for our road trip to Austria.  I can’t wait to have the experience of camping on the show grounds with all the Europeans.  Hopefully it won’t be too wet or muddy, but even THAT will be an experience to remember.

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