Sunday, February 24, 2008

I'm Off to College!

I bet you are all wondering what I'm doing writing in my blog when I'm now officially in college! Well, my puppy raiser and I wrote this over the course of the weekend. So, while I'm now getting settled into my dorm room my puppy raiser is busy typing all of this up. It sure is nice how she serves as MY assistant!

I'll write about Saturday's events in just a second. But, first I've gotta tell you about Friday. On the drive home from work on Friday we saw a big bright rainbow in the sky. And, get this... we drove right under it! My puppy raiser said it must have been some kind of sign that I was headed for a very bright future!

Friday night rocked! We had a camp out in the family room... I'm talkin' sleeping bags, fire pit... [side note by puppy raiser: it was actually a fireplace... :-)] Whatever it was... it gave off a bunch of cozy warmness! It was like camping out in the mountains, but warmer, and we could watch movies! We saw Disney's Snow Buddies. I watched transfixed for quite awhile. What can I say? I kinda had a thing for the puppy, Rosebud. But, it was a long day and we were all super tired. We all (even Ashley) fell asleep while watching the movie.

Saturday we woke up bright and early. Zuleika and Frisco and their puppy raisers came over at 7:00am to pick us up. Z and Frisco are just little pups... they're not a big dog like me, so they weren't heading off to college. But, they came along to see me off and attend the CCI graduation ceremony. The car ride to the Santa Rosa was the BEST! My puppy raiser and I rode in the back seat the whole way and snuggled!

When we got to CCI, I was given a fancy new blue cape. I was lookin' good! Then, I had to pose for photos. Ugh! I tell ya'... going off to college sure is going to be a nice break from all the photo sessions! After the countless photos, we went out to lunch. I was hoping we would get to play at the big CCI park before heading over to the graduation... but, it was rainy and muddy so we didn't get to do that... :-(. After lunch, we drove over to the Wells Fargo Center for the Arts, where the graduation ceremony was to take place. I've been to graduations in the past, but this one was in a much smaller theater than usual cause the band Big Bad Voodoo Daddy was playing later that night in the larger theater. I told my puppy raiser that they should have come over and joined our ceremony... and she agreed!

The graduation ceremony was packed with people and dogs. It was all pretty exciting. It was like a big reunion too. You won't believe who I saw there... my mama's breeder-caretaker! This is the wonderful person who was there with me when I was first born! And, she took care of me for the first few months of my life! I was very happy to see her... and gave her my big smile! LMRAT was there too... and I also gave her my big smile! It was so cool 'cause the 3 people who were the most important people in my life, were all there in one place to give me good wishes as I was about to head off to college.

The graduation ceremony started off with a bunch of people talkin'. And, then there was a slideshow of all of the matriculating dogs (dogs heading off to college)... and get this... the photo of my puppy raiser and I under the rainbow made the opening slide!!! After the slideshow, all of us matriculating dogs and our puppy raisers walked across the stage and each of us dogs got a medal placed around our necks! I felt like I was winning the olympics... only the medals were made out of paper instead of gold.

The absolute best part of the graduation ceremony was when the Graduating Class of February 2008 came out on stage. These are the people and canine companions (dogs GRADUATING from college!) who just finished their two week team training session! The graduating class consisted of Skilled Companion Teams, Service Teams, and one Facility team. It was very exciting to see the puppy raisers of the canine companions present the puppies they had raised to the recipients! If I work really hard in college, my puppy raiser will get to present me some day!

After the ceremony was over, my puppy raiser was pretty emotional. At first she told me she just had something in her eye. As if I would believe that! Then, she said it was because she was so happy for the graduates... and so happy that I was about to embark on the next chapter of my life. I believed that... but, I think she was also kinda upset that her little boy (ME) was about to head off to college!

We drove back over to CCI, and by this time it was really raining. My puppy raiser gave me my dinner in the car (so I wouldn't get wet outside). Then, she took me into this room, where she handed over my fancy blue cape. The CCI trainers told her to take as much time as she needed to say goodbye to me. She quietly walked me away from everyone, gave me a big hug, and told me she loved me and she would be happy no matter what my future held. She said that it was up to me now to decide my destiny. She gave me one last hug and said "Goodbye Sweet Boy". Then, she walked me over to a trainer, handed him my leash, and the trainer walked me down the hallway to show me my dorm room. As I was leaving, out of the corner of my eye I saw a bunch of other puppy raisers hugging my puppy raiser. She sure does know some awesome people!

As for me... I excitedly trotted down the hallway with the CCI trainer. I'm ready to embark on the next chapter of my life!


P.S. My puppy raiser told me (through telegraphic thoughts) that once she left, Skipper was outside waiting for her. He's the little pup who is going to keep my puppy raiser company this next week. She said she snuggled with him all the way home. Supposedly this little dude, Skipper, reminds her of me. She said that he's like a mini-me. Here's a photo of me with mini-me taken before I was turned in. He was trying to kiss me. Ick!

1 comment:

The Puppy Raising Roller Coaster said...

My name is MeKalea and I raise puppies for Guiding Eyes for the Blind. I just wanted to wish Carlo the best of luck at college and was wondering if I could link to your blog.