As always the Annual Fall Luncheon in Portland was delightful. AS I attend the luncheon and hear the journey of a guide dog, I cry with tears of gratitude and joy. I listen to another guide dog handler's story and am Inspired. It is a delightful experience and a great reminder to not take for granted what I enjoy each day with my guide and all the people and puppies involved. We left without a picture of any of the adorable puppies! We did get a picture of this sweet 5 year old puppy, Cricket with dear friends Debi and Peggy.
Flying back home, the woman sat down next to me and said very loud - I am NOT sitting here! I smiled - (what else can you do). After everyone was seated, she told the flight attendant that she could not sit by this dog! (The dog was curled up in a corner with a seat between me and this lady.) The flight attendant asked her if she was sure she wanted to move and give up the extra leg room in bulk head. She said she would need to move. He left to find someone that would trade seats with her. In the meantime, I began to chat with her and explain a little bit about how nice this Cricket girl was. She started asking me questions about guide dogs, and I answered her questions. Somewhere in there the flight attendant came back and she told him - I'm fine this lady is really nice and says her dog is too! Then, her final comment to me: Don't You have Anybody at Home that Can Take Care of your Dog? I said yes but she is my eyes! I need her! Sigh.
Two additional fun notes of actually fun interactions: As I was sitting waiting to board the plane, I began talking with a lady who indicated her son was blind. At this point, neither one of us knew where the other one lived, etc. She began telling me about the awesome teacher her son had, etc. Not long and we had realized that her son and I had the same amazing mentor.
After getting off the plane, Cricket and I were walking quickly off to catch our cab, when I heard someone call out Becky. What a delight to see Dr. Digre from the Moran Eye Center (where I worked until seven years ago). She said they still miss me ... okay, that made my day!