The journey to the Seeing Eye began on Friday, April 23. I got up with Keri and the kids at about 5:30 or so and started checking email and handling some work issues. The rest of that day was spent packing, gathering last minute technology items to put into my laptop bag and getting my home machine ready for the trip. I set up a secure FTP server to be able to access all of the data on my drive while I am away. I am a Qwitter user and insured it would collect tweets while I was traveling so that I could retrieve it later.
Keri and I left the house about 4:30 and went out for dinner near the University of Arizona where the shuttle would pick me up.
After dinner we went and waited for the shuttle. It was a very long wait as the shuttle driver got there about 30 minutes late.
I arrived at the airport around 8:30 and proceeded to the gate. I will say that if you are going to travel in the Phoenix airport that this is the perfect time of the day to do it. There were no lines. The only waiting was for someone to assist me to the gate. I then sat and waited for pre-boarding. The plane was a 737 and was packed!
Karen Shandrow and I traveled together on the flight and we watched movies during the flight. We first watched The Water Boy which I had seen before but really enjoyed. Karen really liked it. We then watched the movie Up which both Karen and me thought that the movie wasn’t very good.
We landed in NJ at 6:30 and were taken to the Presidents Lounge to wait for the Seeing Eye driver to arrive to take us to the campus.
We got to the campus around 9:45 or so. I had a very short room introduction and then began the process of unpacking the important stuff, the technology. I was almost complete with that when Beth the nurse came in to visit with me. I really enjoyed her visit.
I then started to unpack clothes and other items when my instructor arrived and gave me a tour of the building. I really thought I remembered most of it but man, it is going to take some time to get used to some areas again. I am in room 103 and I have never been on the first floor before so a lot of this area of the building is not as familiar to me.
After the tour we went out for a Juno walk around the big driveway in front of the building. She wanted to see my correction strength, pace and pull preference and more. All I can say is I am surely going to get nagged at for all of the bad habits we retrains have. It is OK really, it is all to insure the new dog works out well but man it amazes me what we pick up. You really never realize it until you come back to campus.
I came back to my room and finished unpacking and then went to lunch. I had a ham sandwich with chips and a glass of milk. I had a hard time eating it as I was starting to fall asleep at the table. I got up and went back to my room and crashed for about 3 hours.
I then got up and started checking the thousands of tweets and email messages I had gotten during my travel to the Seeing Eye. It was then time for dinner. We had a yummy turkey dinner. Jim, the President of the Seeing Eye, sat at our table and his wife Ginger was sitting behind me. Ginger was in my 2002 class so it was good connecting with her again.
After dinner we had a 6:30 meeting where we received leashes and a MP3 player with the lecture material on it. It is a 4GB player with 5 basic buttons on it. If we want to keep it the cost is $15. It will be nice to have just to keep the lecture material on it.
After the meeting I helped Karen get wireless working on her netbook. I then went back to my room and called Keri and the kids to check in. I finished checking email and started to get ready for bed. I showered in the evening and laid down to listen to the radio.
I am typing all of this up at 6:30 on Sunday.
Today, we will go into town for another Juno walk. We will then have a “practice surprise” fire drill as they called it at around 11:00 or so.
In the afternoon we are going to get a silent car demonstration and then it is play with puppies time at around 2:15 or so.
Dinner is at 5:30 today.
I will write more later. Breakfast is coming up and I am a bit hungry. We leave the building at 7:45.
Just a quick update. Breakfast was awesome!
See everybody later on the blog.