Sunday, March 4, 2012

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Walking the Walk...Sort of

Walkathon 2012.  It was time.  We had a plan in place.  We were going to have breakfast over at Melisa's and then go to St. Pete in plenty of time.  Well, that was the plan.

This basket has lots of my cinnamon scones in it.
We had a lovely breakfast.  We got to Melisa's on time.  At 8 am.  I even got up early to make scones. How efficient is that?  Willow and Jam and Duke and Erik were all playing well.  Especially Jam and Erik.  They were super buddies.  Let's just say that Erik, who is just coming upon the six month mark and thinking about having some nuggets, got to thinking about what it means to be a man from Jam.  Because as we all know, Jam is a player (at least in Jam's head he is a player!). 

Anyway, they all proceed to tire themselves out.  We have a nice relaxed breakfast.  Then 9 arrives.  Criminey!  How did time go so fast?  We jump into our cars and fly down to the walkathon and park on one of the side streets and walk in.  Our North group is somewhere near the food trucks, but we don't know where those are.  There is a huge crush of people and dogs.  Jam is super excited about all of this, trying to jump, panting, trying to lunge, so keeping him under control is a full time job.  
At the beginning of the walkathon.  Jam is super excited.  Fred and Stephanie are on either side of him.

This is Mary and Hermione! They recognized Jam and said hello!
We finally find kettle korn, which is a food product, but we don't find our group.  We are late and they started without us.  Stephanie finds us though and walks with us.  At the kettle korn place I meet Mary and her husband and their puppy Hermione.  They were there by themselves and I asked them to join us, but the walkathon really isn't a place where you can walk in a group.  People were stopping to say hello, I slowed to put on the walkathon t-shirt, and we were looking around for others in our group, so we ended up being too slow and lost Mary, her husband and Hermione.  But they were very nice and Jam and Fred and I enjoyed meeting the three of them.

Karen says hi to former puppy Duke as Melisa chats with Tampa AC Jan.
 On the way to registration Jam had been panting quite a bit.  Well, by the time we had gotten a couple hundred yards into the walk, Jam threw up his breakfast in the grass by the curve.

Some player.  Some might call it performance anxiety.

Overexcited, overheated and overstressed, Jammy needed to sit out the walkathon.  Evidently Jammy was more like his puppy raiser mommy than we knew.  I missed so many field trips in grade school because I would get so excited about them I would make myself sick.  So sick I couldn't go on the field trip.  Twisted, I know.

So, we poured cold water on Jammy's head (but not in his mouth as really cold water can make them throw up and not do any good) and most of his body.  Then we filled a bowl with room temp water for him to drink, which he did.  From our grassy venue, we watched the walkathon pass us by and we waved hello to people we knew and Jam relaxed and cooled down.  Willow gave him a little bit of the stink eye as it was her first walkathon and she really wanted to walk it and Jam's overexcitedness was an amateur move.

Kathy Hysmith and Spirit stopped by to say hello. Jam's profile is just off to the left.

Fred is standing with Willow on his left, Stephanie is in the center and John has Angel on his left.  John stopped by to say hello.

Erik, a yellow goldadore, meets Spirit a black labrador.

Duke, a yellow lab, is now an ambassador dog.
 We waited for about 45 minutes in the cool shade with a lovely, cool breeze blowing in off the bay.  It was delightful.  Then we decided to cut over to the finish line, since Jam obviously couldn't walk the full route.  He seemed back up to full steam, but better to be cautious.
Rick and his son Samuel are walking their puppy Eckerd, a yellow lab.  Stephanie is behind them with Jam.
 We met up with the Eckerd crew and walked it in with them.
Fred is walking Willow beside Kerry and her daughter.

Stephanie and Jam are approaching the finish line.
 There we met up with some old friends of ours, Joey's puppy raiser, Dave who now has Mick who went in for training Saturday afternoon.  Dave said that Joey had finally been matched!  Congratulations to Dave and his family!!!
Dave and his Mick are here for one last walkathon before going IFT that afternoon.  Dave's previous pup just got matched!
 We also caught up with friends Larry and Gabrielle with Trapper and Trudy with Legion.
Going round the circle, Rick and Eckerd, Gabrielle, Fred and Willow, Trudy and Larry and Trapper.

 And of course, there was Petey, St. Pete's first puppy, who was so adorable!  He has a HUGE fan club.
Dave and Petey talking for the cameras.
Petey meeting his puppy peeps.

Jam playing hard to impress with Petey.  He was just jealous.  People used to think he was the cutest in the room! 8-)
 After the walkathon a bunch of us went over to The Hangar for lunch.  We ended up outside where Jam was actually fascinated by the planes taking off and landing.  The Hangar is very guide dog puppy friendly and their food is tasty.
Jam peering out the railings to watch the planes take off.

Finally bored with the planes, Jam crashes.

A helicopter landed during lunch.  It would be a great exposure for your pup.

Jam and I in our dinner finery.  Jam really didn't want to sit still.  He was a major pain.  

Elizabeth and Kelly are from the Georgia group and are friends with Julie who has Massena, Jam's brother.  
 The dinner was great fun.  Not only was it great to get dressed up, which is something I love to do, but it was fun to see everyone and get to put some names to faces and meet online friends in person.
Sign saying no food or beverages beyond this point.  Melisa thought it should also say no poo what with all the little puppies at the dinner.
 We did go into the Egyptian exhibit.  I was a bit disappointed in it.  Mostly it was alabaster jars and some statuary.  I was hoping for some jewelry or gold.  It was also a bit frightening to be honest.  There were lots of plinths with big vases of alabaster on them and I could see Jam getting excited about one of the girls or revved up by one of the boys and doing a little jump. A jump into the plinth.  Or a jump that knocked Fred into the plinth.  Or Fred into someone else, who ran into the plinth, resulting in a long pronounced scream of horror.  Then everyone, as if getting the same text at the same time, all turning to look at me, as if to say, "Why?"

I made a hurried round through the exhibit and then left and crammed my face full of canapes, listening for the faint sounds of screaming and breaking glass.  Fortunately, I never heard them.

Fred got to meet some of our friends from Houston, but unfortunately, I didn't find them before dinner started, so I didn't get to talk with them.  Next year! We did get to talk with trainer Jennifer, who was looking very lovely in her dinner finery.  We are still crossing our fingers that she will find some time to run a training class.
Jam, peering up from under the table at dinner.  Just getting a read on the evening.
 Jam was lovely through dinner. He did try some player moves on Essie, who had just come out of the red tent.  But Essie is made of stronger stuff and she just smiled and sent him on his way.
Chilling under the chair during dinner.
 So he chilled.

Until we started to leave the Museum of Fine Arts.  We were on our way out and all was well.  No alabaster vases shattered.  No accidents of any kind (and believe you me, there were accidents all over the place!) from the boy.  When we happened to get behind an intact male black lab about Jam's size.  All of a sudden, ZING!  The fox tail is in full curve.  It is puffed out to the max.  Every individual hair is standing at attention and Jam is literally trying to walk on two legs to get to this male.

Fred has him. He gives a correction. Nothing.  Correction. Nothing.  We stop and wait.  Jam sees the male getting further away and in his best gangsta howl cries out into the night.

One single, solitary, ear piercing bark.

We slink out the door.

1 comment:

  1. Love your blog posts! So happy to see you, Fred and Jam yesterday.