Monday, August 24, 2009

New Beginnings

Today is my first day of grad school. I went to my first class this afternoon, ENGL 530: The Age of Chivalry. It seems like a fun class; the instructor is an expert on the period and speaks/sings fluent Early Modern English (think of a cross between Chaucer and Shakespeare). She also plays period musical instruments. I know a bunch of people in the class, too, so I'm really looking forward to it. Plus it's a period that I've never studied before, so that should be interesting. I like learning new things.... guess that's why I'm in grad school, eh?

Of course, since my class didn't start until 1:40, I decided to go out to Dianne's this morning. :-P I brought Cedar and Moss. Ann and Levi also came out and worked. It was great to see them! I took a few photos of Levi as well.

Dianne worked Moss in the indoor arena. He did great! He really is a thinking dog; he tries to figure out what you want. I was really pleased to see him take Dianne's corrections and work through his insecurities about going around the sheep on his "bad" side (Away). By the end of the lesson, Dianne was able to get him kicked out and relaxed on that side. She's going to take him in for training after she gets back from the Finals in September. I can't wait to see how he does with more consistent work.

I worked Cedar in the outdoor arena (again!) because the hay field is still growing. I wasn't going to work her because of my knee, but I felt bad that she was just sitting in the truck, and decided to brave the pain :-P. It was worth it! For having three weeks off, she did pretty great. I had to chase her down and back her off a couple times (no bueno for the knee), but for the most part she held it together. I think that all this "respect" work has really helped us to become a better team. We are acting more like partners... as opposed to me always being on the defensive and trying to block her from making mistakes (or running any sheep into the wall). She is much more comfortable with getting sheep off the fence, except when I block her (bah! I can't stop!) of course. Her driving is getting better, and she's showing a lot more control and actually letting me "handle" her a bit; i.e. she will take my commands and listen well. Maybe she's starting to see me as less of an idiot? At the very least, I think my presence means more to her now, which is great. Sure makes things much easier.

I think I'm going to enter her in the GSH Halloween AHBA trial. Depending on how she goes, I'll probably do more than one class with her, especially since they allow assisted outruns and pen-work in Level One (at least to my understanding). It should be a good time :)

We have another lesson with Dianne on Friday morning, so I'm sure I will have more to say then. In between, I have a full week of grad classes and...

*gulp* ... I teach my first college course in the morning... 7:40 AM ... Wish me luck! I hope that my students will actually interact with me and not just stare blankly at the clock hoping for it all to be over.

At least I know what I'm going to wear, have all my shit together, and my lessons prepared. Agh.


JoeC said...

Your going to do great at teaching and at Herding lol. I am glad I get to hang out for your first week of school/teaching!!

CAT said...

Good luck teaching your first class Ellie. I loved my time teaching in grad school, hope you do too.

SprinklerBandit said...

Teaching a 7.40 class? The gods hate you. Good luck!