Sunday, 26 September 2010

Taking Calvin Home

At the end of next month I’m going down to Devon for Beth’s hen do. Dawlish in Devon is where my Calvin spent his first year of life with his puppy walkers. Therefore, I contacted them and enquired whether they wanted to meet up. I believe the puppy walkers are the unsungheros of Guide Dogs, as without them people like me wouldn’t be able to have the amazing gift of a Guide Dog.

They replied promptly and said they would love to meet up. Apparently Teignmouth, where the hen do is taking place is only 5mins away and where Calvin did lots of walks both on the coast and main roads. I can’t wait to take Calvin down there to see his reaction, which will obviously be pure excitement no doubt! It will be great to meet his puppy walkers and find out a bit more about how he became the affectionate, playful, comical and mischievous dog he is today!

They also emailed me some photos of when Calvin was a puppy, which I’ll try and upload for everyone to coo at!

Saturday, 25 September 2010

The Unexpected

The latest theatre production I saw was Bustin’ Out. I only booked it because it was classed as a musical and sounded comical. My innocence therefore didn’t realise it would be two fat Australians prancing around topless for the entire show! The musical aspect was songs about boobs and whilst it was funny in some places, I cringed in others!

Calvin came along and when he got bored of crumb searching underneath the seats he would pop his head up and have a peek at the action, typical male! However, prior to going into the theatre, there was a small incident. Since my family and I had gone for a meal before the show I felt Calvin needed a spend before we went in. The theatre is connected to a park, but we just found a grass patch by the car park. Out of nowhere a dog appeared off lead and so immediately we decided to find another spot. Yet, the other dog followed with menacing growls. My mum tried to get in the middle to block the other dog, but I told her to move out of the way so Calvin could stand his ground. I dropped the harness and held onto his lead whilst they sized each other up. The loose dog went for Calvin, but he quickly moved out of the way spinning me in a circle. Seconds after the owner appeared and apologised unsympathetically and removed his dog. Calvin had a bit of a shake but was happy enough to continue working. It did get my heart racing, but I’m glad I didn’t panic and let Calvin stand up for himself. Thankfully no injury was done, but the following day when I worked Calvin in the village he did a little jog past any barking dog and when somebody slammed a car door he tried to leg it. He’s seems back to his usual confident self now though.

Friday, 17 September 2010

MRI Results

On Wednesday I finally picked up my MRI results for my ankle. It only took the NHS 6 months to give me a scan. The physio thought I had synovitis, but this did not show up. The only thing that did was some bone bruising. It has been 7 months since I sprained my ankle and to still have bone bruising on a sprain that hardly had any swelling is strange.

The NHS had no useful advice and after I insisted I was still unable to run pain free and generally walk around these days without some sort of ache, he said he would refer me to a sports doctor. Only, he doesn’t know how long this will take, where a sports doctor could be found within the NHS and failed to be able to even use a telephone and Google. The nurse had to help him!

All of this is highly unhelpful and with winter training approaching and no idea of when I can run again, I’m feeling next year slipping away from me already. I’ve decided I can wait no longer and will go private to get a quicker and more informed answer with regards to my injury.

I really hope this all gets resolved soon, as I’m frustrated I’ve achieved literally nothing this year and want to prove my ability next year.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Libby Clegg

Libby Clegg is a T12 athlete meaning she is partially sighted, but still needs a guide runner. She won Silver at the last Paralympics over 100m and hopes to repeat her podium form in 2012. She now trains at Loughborough, the same place as me and because of this I have benefited from the expertise of her guide and coach. She recently did an interview for UK Athletics and I thought I’d share it, as I feel it’s very honest, as well as informative. It raises some good issues regarding visually impaired athletics, as well as general VI day-to-day life. You can view the article here:

Libby Clegg’s interview for UKA