When I started this blog I promised myself I would include all aspects of working with a Guide Dog, be they good or bad. I am fortunate that most of the time I can share the positive stores about how great Wiley is but occasionally things don’t go to plan. Such was the case yesterday.
The day started well. I had a talk to do in Tuggeranong, which is on the other side of Canberra. I arranged to meet someone at the Tuggeranong bus interchange by 10:15. To make sure we would get there on time Wiley and I needed an early start leaving home around 8:30.
Every thing went incredibly smoothly, so smoothly that Wiley and I arrived about 20 minutes before I was due to meet up with my contact for the talk. I thought to pass some time I might treat myself to a hot chocolate.
I don’t know Tuggeranong very well so simply asked Wiley to ‘find the coffee’, he strode off confidently which indicated to me he had an idea where he needed to go and sure enough we were soon walking into a shop. I asked him to find the coutner and he took me to where I needed to order. The server told me he would bring my hot chocolate over to my table so I asked Wiley to ‘find a seat’ and he took me to an empty table. I sat down and he settled under my chair. Perfect work – What a good boy!.
I enjoyed a delicious hot chocolate then stood up to go. That was when things went a little awry. It was my fault – usually I get Wiley to come out from under my chair before I stand up. This time I stood up first, Wiley also stood up and the chair came with him. Wiley is a tall boy which meant he ended up wearing the chair like a saddle. He tried to shake the chair off him, in an effort to help I knocked over the chair next to mine. The chairs were very light weight but still made a racket as they hit the floor.
The server came over to make sure I was OK and he kindly picked up the chairs and told me everything was fine. I was so embarrassed as I like to be as unobtrusive as possible when I work with Wiley -yesterday we made our presence known loud and clear. Oh well you live and learn.
I don’t think Wiley gets embarrassed, he simply guided me out as if nothing had happened. We found our way back to the interchange, met up with our contact and followed them to the venue where I was giving the talk.
Another valuable lesson learned – if Wiley is tucked under a chair he needs to get out and stand up before I do.