What a day. A 4.15am alarm call had us on the road before 5am. It was damp and drizzle as we traveled down through Wales but the journey was going so well, until we hit the "Road Closed" sign. There had been no warning and no diversion signs. We read the sign quickly and concluded the road was closed from 7am. Other traffic were going through and as it was before 6.50am we decided to follow. Wrong decision! I think the traffic were probably men going to work on the "site" but god knows where that huge Laura Ashley wagon went! A man on a JCB stopped us and I opened my window for advice to be greeted with "Can't you fucking read?" I told him it says closed from 7am .. in his dulcet mid Wales tone he answered "No,it's closed all the fucking time!" I apologised and said we had obviously misread the sign and asked where do we go then? He said "Follow the diversion signs!" But we hadn't seen any diversion signs, we hand't seen any notice of road closure either! Anyway we turned round and headed back to Newtown .. Oh a Diversion sign .. but what the hell use was it there when we should never have been there in the first place? Why was there no diversion sign before we went up the bloody hill!
My experience of this judge and his judging is very mixed. He loved Jay and later Asha and Mikey. Commenting at the time that that he respected judges who admired the better constructed bitch (Asha) over her more glamours brother(Mikey). He placed both very well at 2 years old but when I took both under him a couple of years later he totally contradicted himself, didn't place Mikey and commented that Asha colour was poor. He was also the first judge to not place a young Nico first .. but I guess that was bound to happen! I said at the time I doubt I would show under him again, but with a different team I decided to give him a go!
Ross announced his arrival in the ring .. as he does. Though he was a little bit of a handful for Sarah he did do quite well and she always gets the best out of them. He was second out of 3 puppy dogs and just for a minute there I kind of thought it was going to be his day. Never mind, maybe one day ...
As we stood and watch Post Graduate Dog the judge seem to loose the plot. He had about 9 nice dogs in the ring but decided to only place 3. Why? What the hell was going on? There where nice dogs in there who were more than worth of 4th and 5th. Loki was in the next class and I started to think, if he does that to Loki then that'll be it for me with this man. Luckily it didn't come to that and Loki gave a predictably great performance to be 4th out of 9. Though Loki was great in the ring it seems we again have some issues to address with him. Yesterday he lunged out quite aggressively at 2 dogs, a Bulldog and a Smooth Collie. Unfortunately he wasn't with me on either occasion, but it's a matter I need to address as I will not allow him start behaving in such a manner!
After the males had finished we went to get the girls from the van. I was horrified to find Kaiah was soaked, her bedding so wet that water poured out of it. I know the van leaks but with it parked on a slight slope the pouring rain had all run in and on top of Kaiah. Thankfully I had 2 towels and a friend kindly lent me a third and I always carry spared bedding .. just incase!!!
Kaiah was my star of the day, her behaviour and performance were faultless. She looked the best she's ever looked in the ring and put so much effort into her gaiting that I got quite emotional as I watched her power around the ring. She looked amazing and I honestly stood there thinking that's my girl, I bred her ..I was so so proud of her. Kaiah was second in a class of lovely bitches, had she not been placed I still would have been there thinking how wonderful she looked and how fantastically she went round that ring on the day! After the class I was showered with congratulations and praise for her which was just a fantastic feeling.
Following on from winning PGB in Builth last week Bella, Loki's sister also came home with a card. Bella was placed 5th in her class so we were all happy to come home with a card.
Sadly due to the lights in the marquee and the set up of the ring the photos are really not great, but at least I have some to add to my diary of memories ...
Concerned about getting things wrong on the route home we decided to come home alone the A49 then onto the A5 and over the Llanberis pass. Again we seem to getit wrong as the A5 was a nightmare and give or take a 20 min stop for chips in Llangollen it took us 5 hours to get home .. We live and learn!