The longer blog post all about my Oregon trip- as promised!
Lizzie and I left on Tuesday evening (1/15/08) for Portland, about a 3.5 hour flight from Dallas. We flew American and it was GREAT- the evening flight (departing at 9:25) was fairly empty and I had a row to myself. Lizzie is small enough to ride in an under-seat carrier (and probably will remain so)- there was a (very oversized) Silky Terrier on the row ahead of us who was 14″ and probably 25 pounds. BIG boy. Lizzie did GREAT getting through the airport and was slept through most of the flight- I woke her up about 2 hours in and gave her some ice cubes to munch on- I knew she was thirsty (and hungry) but we still had a way to go.) She was THRILLED to see the grass when we landed- I headed straight out to the pickup area as soon as we got off the plane, then circled back in to pick up my checked baggage. My friend Emily met me with her daughter, Dea, and Cardigans Traum and Galaxy in tow.
Emily’s been a friend of mine for almost 7 years- my corgi Indy is the same age as her Traum and we got involved in the breed at the same time. Galaxy is her 9 month old puppy and was being shown for the second time at the Rose City Classic- one of the specialties is a Supported Entry for the national breed club- so there was TOUGH competition on all the days. The Rose City Classic is a HUGE dog show- 5 days of shows including some 20-odd breed specialties, obedience, agility, and rally competition. It’s filmed to be aired on Animal Planet every year and the group ring is huge and very plush because of that. (Photo to the left is Emmy showing Galaxy on Friday in the v. swanky ring!)
Because Rose City is so big, there are TONS of spectators and it’s a very big deal show to vend at. There are 60-odd vendors selling everything from dog show supplies like leashes and treats to toys, crates, kennel flooring, every manner of grooming tool, and most importantly for us, gifty things for dog lovers. Emily is a fellow artisan and does DARLING dog breed pins sculpted out of polymer clay. When I started making my pendants, we’d talked about vending together at this show, but the waiting list was REALLY long. We got on the waiting list in October of 2006, just after my first art show, and were told it would probably take us 4-5 years to actually make it to the invitation stage. On December 27th, we got a call- they’d had a space open up, were we interested in vending? HECK YEAH! So we scrambled and I painted like a mad thing for 3 weeks to get enough inventory for the show! We recruited two of Emily’s friends- fellow sculptor Amy and general crafty-lady Marion, who makes super-yummy homemade doggy treats, scarves, and checkbook covers.
So early Wednesday morning, we made our first trek to the Expo Center, where the dog show was held, and set up our booth with Marion’s help. By that point, we were WIPED- we checked into the hotel a day early and crashed early- ready to be up and at ’em early on Thursday for the first day of the show.
As it turned out, vending Thursday was optional. We did some sales and but it was definitely the least busy day. In the future, we’re not going to let people put things ‘on hold’ more than a day, though! There were a ton of other great vendors, from Dogwise.com (more dog books than you can imagine!) to 3Cs dog supply to a REALLY great Canadian dog outfitter who sold all sorts of great stuff from Ruffwear and Planet Dog, and some REALLY awesome collars and leads. Amy finished up her work week and showed up with her adorable Shiba boy Naughty, who is the Most Polite Shiba On The Planet.
Friday was a little more chaotic than Thursday, since Emily was showing Galaxy and Amy was showing Naughty at different times. This ended up being the only day I got to see Galaxy show. I also got to meet a number of other darling Cardis, including a cute Baledwr boy owned by C-Myste named Wally. The smooth collies showed shortly after the Cardis and I got to watch part of that too- I wish that I had taken Mal along for the trip since I think he would have done very well. The big ring size really allowed both the Cardis and Collies to move out. Here in Texas where nearly all shows are indoors, small rings are a really common problem.
On Saturday, Marion also came to help at the booth, which was great- everyone got longer breaks. I got to watch some FAST agility (which is sort of like Snooker- I’ll talk about this another day) in the morning and obedience in the afternoon- mostly open and and utility. There was a REALLY tricky looking rally course that I wish we’d gotten to try (I meant to snag a course map if there were any left over but I forgot), and some really impressive dogs competing in all three sports. I got to meet a few rare breeds too- a Pumi and a Buhund! Lizzie had her picture taken by a blogger for the main Portland Newspaper (see last entry) and in general was her usual charming self.
On Sunday, I got to meet two Spanish Water Dogs- another breed currently in AKC’s FSS. This is a really neat breed that’s another generalist- in addition to water work, they did some herding and were just all-purpose companion and working dogs. They have a lovely coat that both curls and cords, and adorable faces.
Monday was the last day and we were all exhausted. Ironically, this day had GORGEOUS (but VERY cold) weather- this was the first morning that was clear and not too foggy- I got to see Mount Jefferson, Mount Hood, and Mount St. Helens all lit up by the rising sun- truly gorgeous. Emily’s husband Curtis drove up (on his motorcycle, in 20 degree weather (that’s Faranheit, in case anyone forgets! BRRR!) to help us break down the booth, and shortly after 7:30 we finished packing everything up and left the Expo center for the last time for this year!
I flew out early Tuesday morning- another pretty day. The plane taking off over the snowy mountains was quite a sight, but I was REALLY tired and fell asleep almost immediately. I spent most of last week recovering from the dog show. 😛
All in all it was a REALLY fun trip and I can’t wait to do it again next year!