Animal, Blind, Dog, Great teacher, Guide Dog, Hidden Disability, Hiden Dissability, Humour, Individuality, Labradoodle, Pets, Sight Loss, Unconditional Love, Unique, Vision Impairment, Visual Impairement
Themes weave through life like a multicoloured patchwork quilt and not one persons is ever the same as the next. Many quilts are full of themes of excitement and adventure whilst others have a little more serenity about them. The day that my patchwork quilt met Minster Munch’s, it was clear to see that our quilts had many of the same themes. Many were positive, showed strength and then there were the other ones. I soon discovered that my clumsiness theme ran alongside his in perfect sync. Within this clumsy synced theme, we both developed the by-product of having the tendency to get stuck in the physical way. Combining both of our clumsy characteristics was a match made in heaven.
The photo in this blog was taken when Munch and I were staying in a hotel room whilst away at a weekend workshop. To keep us both amused we were playing ball in the room which on reflection was maybe not a good idea. As he scrambled under the bed to retrieve the ball, he got a little stuck. After what seemed like an age, I wondered what was taking him so long to come back out as he had dived in at speed. I had to take the photo to zoom in at the maximum level to see where he was and found him just lying there. He could not figure out a way of reversing out so just lay there until I lifted the bed for him to saunter out at his own pace whilst the bed was mid-air. After his third time of getting stuck under the bed that day I decided to put the ball away whereas most people would have after the first time. I learnt that day that his manoeuvring techniques may not have been at their best. I am sure they are only worsening over time too.
To be fair on him, getting stuck is sometimes just a matter of miscalculated judgments as he has obviously never learnt about angles and such. When he sees one of his loving fans, he likes to shoot between their legs for a cuddle. Apparently, this is common doggy behaviour which is lucky as I really didn’t want him getting some sort of restraining ban for inappropriate behaviour. Back to this angle thing. Munch had come with me to my Uncles funeral and after we had left the service we went to speak to the people who had attended. I was sat by my mother in the funeral and Munch bless him had been on his best behaviour, but he changed when he went outside as he could sense a more relaxed atmosphere. As he adores my mother so much, he dived in head first between her legs for his cuddle. The only problem was that my mother is only 4’ 11” with 25” inside legs and Munch is a rather tall dog. With the angle that he was at mixed with my mother s long skirt now shortened and stretched over his body, my mother could not escape. So, after he had finished his cuddle, he tried to move off but didn’t realise that even with my mother balancing on tip toes, escaping was a little difficult. Any onlookers would have seen the back of this petite lady’s body with a dog sticking out of between her legs. Not the most common sight in a funeral. As Minster Munch tried to move away he took my mother with him as she could not get off him. As he trotted off, my mother resembled a backward facing jockey holding on for dear life. It was okay thought as after we had finished laughing, we did manage to help lift her off as we kind of helped her tip to the angle she needed. This hasn’t put him off giving people cuddles in this way though, if anything it has made him to do it more.
These are just two examples of his ability to get stuck. Karma taught me recently though, not to mock him. Whilst out shopping I needed the toilet so we headed off to find them. As he is such a big dog he cannot normally fit into normal sized cubicles so sometimes we have to use the disabled toilet. This one time I thought the lady’s toilets were slightly bigger than normal and he would be okay in them. As he went into the cubicle first I tried to push past him I realized I had misjudged the size and realized we both wouldn’t get in. Ever the optimist I was determined to make this work so I stepped over him carefully. To make things easier I thought I would hover my foot above the toilet and pirouette around on my other leg to close the door. My un-ballerina like body had other ideas and my hovering foot made the biggest plop ever as it landed at a funny angle in the toilet bowl. On a plus side, Minster Munch managed to close the door with his nose, so the original plan had worked. As he turned his back on me and sighed loudly, I swear he was rolling his eyes too. I was now left trying to figure out how to get my foot out of the toilet. I had not long come out of a full leg cast after dislocating my knee and causing soft tissue damage for the umpteenth time, so I knew I could not just pull it out as I really didn’t fancy doing more damage to not only my knee but also a paramedic’s state of mind if I needed to call for help. After managing to balance on the cistern of the toilet with my other leg I gently persuaded it to come out with a promise to disinfect my foot when I got home.
As I squelched home, I vowed never to mock Munch’s issues with getting stuck again. Matching a clumsy woman with a clumsy Guide Dog means at least we have a colourful patchwork quilt together.