It's been about four days since Glacier moved out. He took a few of his favourite toys with him and since then has been given some pretty cool new ones. One of his new favourites is a plush frog with a squeaky tennis ball inside. From all accounts, Glacier is one happy guy and that makes this whole ordeal so much easier. Of course I miss him and our home is just that much more quieter minus the big Yellow Fellow, but the updates I've received are fantastic.
Glacier is having a great time going to the beach and digging in the sand. His new Dad even buried a bag with a treat in it for him to dig up; something he obviously could not do as a working dog. He's been to his local pub and has figured out quite quickly that the pub owner is the "biscuit lady." In the mornings, the door is left open so he can wander in and out of the house to the garden and he has been going into the office with his new dad. He even went toy shopping at lunch yesterday and played a game of "Monkey in the Middle" to help him to learn how to fetch. Things could not be better for Mr. G and I couldn't be happier. He is getting everything he deserves that I would not have been able to give him.
So, where does that leave me?
Well, life's not dull, that's for sure. It never is. My long distance running training is starting to come together, which if you're interested, you can find updates on my other blog. Hermione keeps me busy, of course, and Hamish has improved his escape artist skills. Not to mention, we also got Hamish a wife named Lola. She is a Lionhead Lop and is absolutely gorgeous. The two are currently residing in separate cages because we do not want any little escape artists running about. Hamish is scheduled for neutering on Monday and then the two can move in together.
Roscoe is doing well, but he definitely is missing Glacier. He looks for him whenever people come over and once when I let him off leash to have a run, he took off into the forest to who knows where; probably looking for Glacier. He's a bit more clingy than normal and certainly seems a little out of sorts. However, having Hermione to play with has helped I think and we've tried to keep him busy with working and off leash runs. We were concerned that Glacier's departure would impact Roscoe's working, but everything seems to be okay for now.
As for me and getting around, I'm honestly going a bit stir crazy. For the most part, I have to rely on others-Tenie and Mr. K mostly-to get me around and I hate it. I hate asking them to take me and I hate having to fit my schedule to everyone else's; which only seems polite since they are doing me a favor. I have used a dog for ten years and it feels so very strange not having one with me. I have a White cane on order so that I can start getting myself around with that, but I am not a confident cane traveler and that makes me a bit nervous. I'll have to get over that quickly though because I have absolutely no idea when a new dog will be found for me.
Unlike most North American guide dog programs-not all, but most-the guide dog organisation in the UK does not bring a client in for training until a match is found for that person. In some of the North American programs, you arrive at the campus with the instructors only knowing what you've written on your application about yourself and match a dog to you as best they can from the string of dogs they have already trained. Here, that is not the case.
When I contacted my guide dog representative to ask if he had an average estimated waiting time, he basically told me that there wasn't one. He said that I would be brought in once a dog was found and that based on my high standard of handling skills, the process would not be rushed. He wants to ensure I get a dog I can work with for a very long time. I very much appreciate his dedication to his job, but I wish I had some sort of idea. Am I going to be waiting for a month? Two months? A year?
I'm starting university in the fall and not having a dog to work with on campus makes me very nervous. Will I go through my entire university year guide dogless?
I don't mind waiting. In fact, I prefer that this is a solid match and that I don't have to go through the same struggles I had with Glacier and even with Jetta, but having absolutely no clue how long it will be is difficult.
I guess now all I can do is wait and hope that the right dog comes up sooner than later, or that I get better at using a cane very quickly. Otherwise, who knows how long I will be reliant on others to get to where I want to go. This last option definitely does not work for me. So, with fingers crossed, I settle in to play the waiting game and to also get better at using a cane.