…Sometimes, when we're working together (or so I think), Jen gives me this look like,
"You are talking a fu*king hole in my head,"
And then she wags, slightly, as if to add,
"honey….why don't you stand over there? Behind the truck…"
Friday night we participated at the Canyon County Fair stockdog demo, with Jodi and Echo and Zip, Jaenne and Mo, Janie and Roy….a couple of Couches. The course was setup like a clover-leaf and the object was to maneuver the sheep around barrels and re-pen in a decent time. The experience highlighted how not yet less than completely sucky I am at steering Jen. My timing continues to need serious work. Also, Jen has strong opinions on how things should be done. I don't like to scream "GODDAMN IT WHAT ARE YOU DOING? AWAY! A-AWAY! FOR THE LOVE OF JITTERY JESUS GET YOUR CURLY ASS AAAAWAAY!" because it frightens the children and makes my throat dry. So, Jen didn't take an away. She did it Her Way. It took awhile and our cloverleaf more resembled an angsty dandylion. Jen is getting thinner and faster everyday, but I chalked some of her ignoring me in favor of short cuts ("How about we just skip this barrel, shrill Not Patrick; it's just like the other 2 and I look better on my Come By side…") up to heat (95+) and Jen being Elderly. She takes shortcuts, poor old lady, because she gets tired.
The really important thing to note here is that there were no Elephant Ears. I was promised elephant ears and a six pack, not for the first time in my life, but this time I wasn't even going to pretend it was Forever, nor did I intend to support the elephant ears and watch the 6 pack bloat to hairy party ball…. Still, nada.
Yesterday Jen and I went to the desert with Dianne and Jaenne and various dogs. Jen and I bickered while we worked, I whistled badly, she tried to ignore me..more of those sidelong glances…she looking pointedly back at the passenger seat of the truck…. which I put her in when she finished her run. Because NOT putting her in, just letting her watch…turns out that's bad.
Dianne: "You just let her stare at the sheep like this?"
Dianne: "That is not helping to break down her eye."
Sometimes its so obvious, so tangible that Dianne probably would like to pluck it from the air between us and beat me senseless with it.
Still, we enjoyed hanging out. I love the desert. All the dogs worked great. The sheep appeared stoic as usual. Until the end when the 5 who had been being worked decided to make a break for it. They ran at top sheep speed for the BLM horizon and disappeared into it. After some running, hiking, looking for sheep… we spotted them on a distant hill and Jen brought them back, estimated 700 yardish outrun over uneven terrain, uphill, downhill, sagebrush, etc. She was not really even too winded. And it was hot. Those 4-5 mile runs in the foothills are clearly paying off. She completely blew her tired old lady act, the curly tart.
This is my weekend update in brief. I'm promising myself to update this every day for awhile. Even if its not pretty. I never did get my Elephant ear.