Anything But Boring: Day 1

Last Updated on: 14th May 2023, 11:18 pm

So I made it! The first plane. I didn’t have any sleep because of this silly display’s technical oddities. Hopefully I won’t regret that.

I got a sweet welcome email from the folks at Boring with an audio description of the room and the building. I hope I’ll have a chance to check it out.

All I know about the class is there are 3 of us. They said there might be a fourth but it looks like that didn’t happen.

Does anybody know if this BrailleSense 6 has an airplane mode? I looked in the manual and couldn’t find it. Our flight was delayed taking off and I was worried this thing was causing interference or something because I couldn’t find airplane mode.

My emotions are doing their usual bounce between excitement and wondering if I’m up for whatever Newdog has to throw at me. I don’t even know this dog’s name, and he or she has several nicknames. Von Poochenstein, Snarky Puppy, the list goes on forever. What is this dog going to be like? Is there anything it hasn’t been able to try out because of covid? Am I ready for this? Am I focused enough? Can I get focused enough? I’m so curious about what makes this new dog such a perfect match. They are freakishly good at doing matching so I have lots of hope.

I know I packed reasonably, or I think I did, but I’m so worried I brought too much stuff. I know Tansy’s harness is in the bottom of the bag so I can return it to the school but it’s not that bulky a thing, is it? The suitcase didn’t protest when I shut it, but boy was it heavy! It was good to send it on its way in checked luggage. Please don’t lose my luggage. Please please don’t let me down. I also hope the ribbons I tied to it will stay on because the mail didn’t have time to deliver the cute GDB luggage tags, so some ribbon will have to do.

It’s not a direct flight. I go from Pearson to Chicago and then Chicago to Portland. Then they’ll take me to baggage claim where I’ll be met by someone from the school. And off we go.

The nurses seem really sweet. They’re going to make sure I have distilled water for my cpap machine that I affectionately call Santa. They seem really amazing. I already feel welcome and I’m not there yet!

I wonder how much it’s going to rain while I’m there. I bought new rain pants. Are they going to come in handy?

Both other GDB guide dog trips, I wound up with a headache. Can I avoid it this time?

I’m so tired. Maybe I’ll try to nap.
I don’t think I’m napping.

One more thing I wanted to mention. I’m flying United. They don’t take physical cards to buy food or booze or whatever. You have to put your card into the United app to avoid contact. Whatever. You’re already in a cabin huffing their spit. I hope they made it accessible. Also, they told me I could track my checked bag, but one link wouldn’t respond and the other was a 404. United breaks baggage tracking?

Brrr it’s going to be cold in Chicago. I hope I don’t end up outside for long in my light little coat. Oops.

Well I wasn’t because they threw me in a wheelchair and transported me that way. I felt like cargo. “Tell her to walk backwards and sit in the chair!”
“What gate is she?” When I would speak, it was like I was speaking another language. It’s moments like this that I find myself scrutinizing my appearance. My hair is a bit dishevelled. Is that why they think I’m incapable? Is there anything I could have done? Sometimes, I think so, sometimes, not so much.

After being transported like a sack of potatoes, I was put in a golf cart and ignored for the rest of the journey. Then a guy was nice enough to talk to me like a person.

I’m also having no luck talking to fellow passengers on the flight. It feels like they’d like to run from me. Other flights, people actually talked to me. I don’t like the world we’re beginning to inhabit. Maybe I’m just tired and cranky but I’m not sure.

Someone is dictating in front of me. Is it someone who is in my class? Or is it some self-important weirdo?

I forgot to mention the nice cab driver I had on the way to the airport. When I wasn’t drifting off, we talked about everything from dogs to sleep apnea. He was super helpful in finding someone at the airport so we could get this party started.

Man, I hope I can wake up when I finally arrive. And I hope my beast of a bag arrives ok. If only I could track it…

I must look like I’m about to fall over. A couple of the assistance people grabbed my arm and held it in a death grip as if I was about to fall over.

I feel bad for my poor mom. She was having trouble sleeping, so texted me at 4 this morning asking if I’m in my cab. I was at the airport. I hope she got more sleep.

Apparently it’s raining today in Oregon. I wonder how heavy.

I feel like such a jerk. They indicated that we should read all the class training materials before arriving. Because I’ve been streaming them, I don’t have them here to read as I fly. And even if I did, I’d probably fall asleep trying to listen. I’ve gotten through a bunch but there are a bunch more.

It’s tricky to figure out how much flying time is left when a. I keep drifting off and b. we’re going through time zones. My phone says we’re at Chicago 11:30. So I’ve probably got a ways to go.

One thing that kept happening was the pilot kept trying to get people to sign up for a United visa card. What’s up with that?

we’re going to land soon. Woo!

We landed and I was chucked into another wheelchair. I didn’t even know what was up until it was too late. The woman barked “Sit when I tell you.” and then I was in a chair flying at breakneck speed, seemingly nearly mowing over pedestrians. We got to baggage claim and a guy from the school picked me up and found my bag. Yea!

Now that I’m here, I have meaningful things to say. This place is glorious. The food is amazing and everyone is so sweet. I even told the nurse about my anxiety and she said that was normal.

I have eaten dinner and it was delicious. Lunch was a grilled sandwich and dinner was a chicken and mushroom stew with this delicious salad. I took the cupcake back to my room. I’m not missing out on that gloriousness.

There are 3 of us in class. Everyone seems pretty cool. I’m still trying to remember where everything is, but there is an audio description of the room and the building so maybe it will help. My room is massive. I’m starting to connect pieces together but sometimes I’m doing laps until I find something. It will come. There are definitely no shortage of clues.

We have sleep number beds! Between Santa and the bed, I’m going to get the best sleep of my life.

We have our own patios to relieve dogs on. I’m a little confused because there seem to be several doors that lead out there. And I have a key. Don’t go outside without your keys!

I’m so short. Some of the hooks are too high for me to reach. Oh well.

I think that’s about all my brain can handle. Tomorrow is when things get crazy. Here comes Von Poochenstein. No, that is not the dog’s real name. This time, I might hold out on revealing the name until we’ve been together for a bit. Tomorrow morning is a lot of Juno walking, or walking with an empty harness with an instructor holding it. Then, the afternoon is dog day! Eeeeeeeee!

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