So Friday night Marshall and I met up with a group of friends with the intention of going to see “The Hobbit”. I hope you noticed my use of the word “intention” because that’s the basis for the whole adventure. Two of our friends wanted to ride in our car (Marshall’s car,it’s a rabbit, 4 seater) so already I’ll admit I wasn’t thrilled. Truth be told, the space Judah had in the back “hatch” area was not by any means too small for him, we set it up so it was comfortable and he even had toys to amuse himself. I was concerned mostly because it had rained all day. Not a little drizzle or even a drizzley day with passing showers. It was showers, all day long. Don’t see the connection? Let me explain some things to you;
Judah is a husky, yes he is a mix but he doesn’t know that, he’s all husky all the time. He wants to move, move, move. Run. Run- anywhere or no where it doesn’t much matter to him as long as it’s happening fast. He is fantastic at his job and always does his best to present his best and most appropriate self, he is successful because I respect what he is. I make sure he has a chance to run, wrestle, bush whack, pee, roll, swim, and all those other wild husky beast things! BUT, when it is shitty out (sorry but that’s the perfect word for the weather here on Friday- I try to wisely place my swears) and I know we have some where to go, I have to also remember that he needs to be groomed and tidy. Tidy is NOT a word I would use to describe a wet dog with a double coat. So- he stayed in for most of the day. This generally leads to a restless and stressed Judah.
So I was concerned about confining him to a small travel space, that he wasn’t used to, for a drive that was over an hour. Somehow I was the only one who seemed the slightest bit concerned for Judah’s comfort and security, Rrrrrr (that’s not totally true, 🙂 Marshall did say that if Judah seemed bothered they would have to sit with him on the back seat). Well all my excuses went away when the weather decided to stay warm (therefor leaving the roads free of ice), it stopped raining (wet dog no longer an “issue”, really it isn’t impossible to deal with). I packed a dog jacket and some towels in case the weather changed again a dinner serving of food for Judah and filled a treat pouch with some stale cheerios.* We picked up our friends and headed south to the cinema. We arrived piled out of our cars and headed inside. As the six of us (and my four legged pancreas) stood in line we found out that the 3D showings were all sold out, bummer (yay!) but there were still ‘regular’ showings. We continued to wind through the line chatting amongst ourselves and just as each couple stepped up to their respective ticket window the words rang over the land, “The Hobbit is sold out.”
You have got to be kidding me. We drove so far out of our way to see this movie in 3D and now we weren’t going to get to see it at all! Ugh… well to top it off no one had any idea what they wanted to do. Eventually after a great deal of loitering about (and being in the way) we agreed to head over the the mall and go to the Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant/bar. We all met over at the restaurant and it was slamming inside. We waited in the lobby area while Mrs. Coyote (of Mr and Mrs. Coyote- one of the couples we were with) handled the waiting list and seating arrangements. She did come and check with me to see if we needed special seating arrangements because of Judah (kind but unnecessary). I told her he would be fine where ever and hoped that the fantastic behavior he had in the cinema was going to continue so I wasn’t lying. When we went to our table it took Judah a couple minutes to settle into the table because the footing was and X shape and he had to lay on it somehow. Beyond that he was great throughout dinner.
He alerted while we were waiting for our food to a high and was correct (of course). I gave a correction and estimated what my dinner would require. He settled back down under the table and went to sleep. 3 of the six people sitting at our table (Marshall and I included) kicked or stepped on Judah at some point during dinner and at least two people forgot he was there. Good boy :). After a LONG dinner (which was very yummy, I don’t like spicy food so I had a pulled pork sandwich with coleslaw and coffee*) of spicy wings and beer* we decided it would be fun to wander the mall for a while. It was very fun for me to be out with people in a public place considering how I never get out! Judah was fantastic and after shopping locally today I’ve realized that people in the ‘city’ areas are much more aware of how to behave around a service dog. While we were in the mall not a single person reached out to Judah or went totally over the top when they saw him. A little Ooo, Aah but nothing like we get around here, no squealing or shrieking or grabbing.
It was really nice to not be drilled about the service dog and gawked at all evening. I did speak with some people at Spencer’s after they watched Judah learn that the laser lights moving around all over the floor were not put there to tease him 😛 and they had politely observed. I asked if they would like to pet him and he nicely visited each person, I think their were 5, and then he sat in the middle of the circle to be loved. A little later, while we were all lingering in the middle of the mall, a woman asked me about him. She was about my age, fit and seemingly kind. She said, “Excuse me?” I answered and she asked, “Do you ever play fetch with him or anything, does he get to run around and play?” Alright another chance for education!
I explained to her that after we left the mall we would be going back to Mr. K’s house and he would have his vest off and would be chasing the cat around. I explained that he is just like any other dog when he isn’t ‘working’ and yes, he still does his job when he isn’t wearing his vest. We have 2 other dogs at home that aren’t service dogs and they all sleep together on our bedroom floor at night (truth: Goose, our puppy, usually sleeps in a crate in our room). Yes, he enjoys his job and he doesn’t live a life of servitude. In fact, today we went Christmas shopping for a better part of the day. At the last minute we went to one last store after Judah was already “undressed” and I thought he’d appreciate the break and I tested right before we went in. He wouldn’t be alone, the other two dogs were in the car too. Judah decided to protest this time by shredding Marshall’s Subway wrapper and a box of alcohol wipes on my seat. Message received. Judah would rather be working.
All and all I missed the movie I REALLY wanted to see but we really had a great time. Judah and I got to see the world beyond our little bubble (finally), I got to find out I have a new favorite restaurant and Marshall bought me a new T-shirt (Sublime (: love it) and let me get a new tongue ring. A pretty good night out- holy shit! I had a night out. A real night out, with grown ups, food, drinks, and spontaneous plan changes! Hooray me!