I am exhausted. I am still trying to process everything from the trip- we did a lot of touristy things, and of course a lot of agility.
The Province itself is quite beautiful. Very BC-ish. Green, and Wet. The ocean stunk, and I washed all of my clothes twice to get the smell out.
The flight was a little nerve racking. But okay. I had never flown before but it wasn't that bad- and I was only a little nauseous on the decent. Wicca did great- and seemed to be just fine when we landed.
The Nationals were amazing. The club that hosted it did a great job and it was very friendly- not at all like I thought it would be. Everyone was nice and I met lots of nice people.
I tried Lobster. It was gross. An aquired taste I guess.
The weather was great- if not a little damp. It kept the temperatures down though and the major rain held off until right after the steeplechase finals.
There were some pretty amazing runs- I saw lots of really great dogs- Susan Garret's Encore, and the McCann dogs- Slyce and Ping Pong. There were some unusual breeds as well. Of course there were loads of border collies, and an equal amount of Shelties but there was the odd Wheaten, Cocker, and Vizsla. There was also a cute little Welsh Springer Spaniel, a Giant Schnauzer and a few Bouviers.
My own dog did great. We had some pretty amazing runs- both standards were very nice, and I did a good job of handling them. On the first standard Wicca slipped off the side of the teeter and earned a refusal. Otherwise it was perfect. The second standard was perfect and was one of those runs that take your breath away. The Gamblers were okay. The first Gamble she only got one mini- and pulled in to me over a jump on the gamble. It was a jump gamble- one similar to regionals actually. The second Gamble the opening was beautiful- we got both minis and earned a ton of points- (52) I thought the gamble was a sure thing but Wicca took an off course jump.
The Jumpers rounds were awful and were what caused us to place last. Both of them we had an off course (or two) and a bar (or two)
The steeplechase runs were great. We were clean and very fast in Round 1- In Round 2 I had a bar and STILL came in third place. We squeaked into the finals and I had a blast. It was very intimidating though- a huge crowd, and lots of "pros" watching. We did good though- she bobbled her weave pole entry, and I didn't support a far away jump and we had a bark'n'spin but otherwise it was good. I was pretty happy with her. We placed 2nd in the 6" division.
Overall we placed 10th. Our of 10. Our aggregate score was less than the Regional score. We had moments of brilliance and moments of disaster. But overall I am very impressed with us as a team. I didn't go to win though and although I was a little dissapointed to come in 10th overall I wasn't dissapointed in my dog at all. Our training has really paid off and I know (and have known) where our weak spots are. Agility is a work in progress and we have lots to do yet!