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The rest of today has gone well enough. I'm currently somewhat tired, but not tired enough yet that I think I could sleep. It probably doesn't help that I drank a cup of coffee earlier, either. I had wanted tea, but apparently wasn't fast enough with the coffee machine, (that coffee machine, by the way, is amaaaaaaazing!), and the machine spit out a cup of coffee instead. Ah well...it happens. In the meantime, I can write another update!

The meet-and-greet went fine. Most of the class is comprised of retrains, I think only four of the twelve being rookies, or those receiving their first guides. The East Coast is the geographic region most represented. The West Coast has no representation, the Midwest has some, (there are four people who are in Illinois - I count myself among those as I reside there at present), and we even have a student from Vienna, Austria. Said student came with an interpreter to help if necessary, but his English is very good as far as I am concerned. The majority of the class are older people, but January isn't really a common month for younger students, I don't think. The ratio of retrains probably isn't all that uncommon, either, given the month.

Before I go any further, I'll just get it out of the way: food. Lunch was butternut squash soup and a coldcut sandwich. I opted for both. Dinner was chicken parm over spaghetti with garlic bread, in which I also partook. I opted for water as my drink for lunch and iced tea as the drink of choice for dinner. I think the main breakfast food for tomorrow will be eggs and bacon, at least according to the menu that I found laying on the table in the coffee room.

After dinner, we had our first lecture. We went over equipment and were issued our leashes. We will be given the rest of it at a later date. the announced firedrill happened after that, and then we had chill time. I explored the building to become more familiar with it, (upstairs and down - I like the new upstairs with the game room and exercise room, and the tech lab is awesome! I love what they did with it!), even making a stop in what is known as the old living room. That room really is fantastic as far as the energy and furniture go. There is a nice, very comfortable couch in there! It's perhaps a bit too comfortable... During last class, that was my hiding spot. There were quite a few nights when I could be found up there, relaxing after lecture. It's quiet, which works. Of course I just put all of that out in a public entry, so maybe I need to go find a new hiding spot now? Suggestions? Ah well... I'm feeling confident about how things are laid out, which can only be viewed as a good thing.

A few of us ended up in the coffee room and hung out for awhile, before we split up and now I'm back here, in my room, writing this. Wake-up comes at 6:00AM tomorrow. Obedience is between then and 7:15, at which point breakfast happens. We then load up in the vans and head to White Plains for Juno walks and such. I'm not too sure what all else happens, but dinner and lecture are in there somewhere I'm sure. I'll update as things happen. If anyone has questions or comments, feel free to leave them. I really appreciate those of you taking the time to read. I hope that this is informative and helpful in getting an inside look at what guide dog training is like. This is only one person's perspective, though, .

I'm going to go try and wind down and sleep. I'm not really sure what I'm feeling as far as emotions or mood are concerned now, although I'm thinking that my emotions have yet to catch up with what is happening. It will all be okay, though, of that I am positive. It's just hard not to think of LivDog sometimes, even though I know she's fine. I think it has to do with caring for her for the past seven years, and not having that responsibility anymore, but still thinking that you have it and wanting to be sure things are okay. It will be a major relief on Friday when I get the call/e-mail informing me that she is safely with her puppy raisers. Have I mentioned that this school and the people here are fantastic? More tomorrow.

Reply to first and second post

Date: 2011-01-11 04:02 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hi Liz! When I was getting ivory in Febuary 2010 I was in thesame room you are in. The park door swells and you have to slam it to be sure it doesn't blow open. If you are open minded about food then I'd suggest just saying yes to what ever Nick cooks. He does really well and will take requests. Trust the man. Smile. I understand what you mean by not having the responsability of caring for your guide. When the day of retiring knocks on my door i will feel the same way. These pups are under our loving care. LivDog will enjoy her retirement. By the way, if that is her in your picture on your blog I have to say that she is a good looking lab. I like her coloring. Enjoy your night's rest, Alexis and Ivory

Date: 2011-01-11 05:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] amor-demi-alma.livejournal.com
I adore reading about guide dog adventures, and am so excited to enjoy yours! Keep writing! <3 Best of luck!

Date: 2011-01-11 12:41 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hi Liz,

I just figured out how to read your blog site with the tech help from my teenage daughters!! How come I never tapped into this before?? it is amazing!! I just want to tell you I admire your strength and positive attitude so much. You blow me away!! My heart has been hurting very much for your Monday hand off of Livdog, I could hardly sleep on Sunday night! I guess I am way too sentimental. can you imagine how I will deal sending my daughter off to college in 2 years??

Well, I am glad you did not say goodbye to Olivia because you will see her again!! I can't wait for your visit. We are all on edge for Friday, it will be bittersweet. I hope/wonder if she will remember us?

I love hearing about your daily schedule...it is a great insight as a puppy raiser to find out what happens after we send the dogs off! The only name I recognize is Graham...as he does the IFT (in for training test)when we send our dogs down.

If there are any dogs in your class who are pups of Gertie or Phyllis, i raised those two broods! If there are any dogs in your class whose names start with B they are most likely Bryn's sibling!! Waw Hoo!! I am so anxious to hear about Newdog!!!! will you post a photo?

Love you lotswhich may sound weird as we only met once, but I just think you are one the coolest people in my life! BTW, loved your book postings and plan to copy the idea for 2011. Do you read meryl's door on vacation?

jane in maine

Date: 2011-01-11 12:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gentlewit.com (from livejournal.com)
I wouldn't be surprised if Liv remembers you! My previous guides have definitely recognized their puppy raisers, though, the one we have seen a bit more frequently since they're only about 3 hours away.

Anyway, Liz, I'm thinking of you as Uschi and I finish out our training. :-) The school sounds completely foreign to me now with all the changes, but it's been like 10 years or something since I was there and even longer since I was a student.

Can't wait to hear about the new pup! Have fun on your Juno walk today!

Date: 2011-01-11 02:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lilmizmombassa.livejournal.com
It's very interesting to read about your training. Everything sounds like it is going well there. What you're saying about Liv makes total sense; you're still in "mothering" mode for her, worrying about her all the time. The transition may be difficult, but I'm confident you can handle it. :-)

You're visiting my old stomping ground today. Manhattanville, my undergrad college, is ten minutes north of White Plains. Enjoy your time there and bundle up!

Date: 2011-01-11 02:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] awallens.livejournal.com
I know how hard it is thinking of Liv. I'm thinking of you and her. Hugs. Hang in there. If you ever want to talk or text, please feel free. Hugs.

Date: 2011-01-11 03:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reborn-spirit.livejournal.com
Hey Liz.
I love reading about people receiving their new dogs. I'm sorry you couldn't keep Liv. When are you issued your new doggy?

Date: 2011-01-12 02:52 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] read2781.livejournal.com
I'm glad to hear things are going well. I love reading training journals. Good luck with everything!


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