Saturday, February 8, 2014

Better late than never

CHIPPEWA CORRECTIONAL FACILITY
January 8, 2014

Another winter blast hit southeastern Michigan with several inches of snow and temperatures below zero. Travel was slow leaving the city for Deb in the Leader Dogs for the Blind van. Then Tammy's car got stuck. It took a bit of time to get it unstuck and parked at Meijer's instead of her usual meetup spot on I-75.

In the foregroiund a ground of second grade kids are sitting on the floor looking away from the camer a toward a woman holding a small black lab puppy. She has short brown hair and is wearing a red fleece jacket and blue jeans. There is a white board in the background.
FLD Bear meets Surline second graders.
When I got the call from Tammy that they'd be an hour late picking me up another 100 miles north, I took advantage of the free time. Over the 10 days that I had had FLD Bear, every time I scheduled a visit to Mrs. Matthews' second-grade class at Surline Elementary, the school had a snow day. This was my last chance. This trip I would be handing Bear off to his new inmate raisers at the Baraga Correctional Facility.

I found Mrs. Matthews' class hard at work in the computer lab. FLD Dutch had been a frequent visitor during our year together so the students were well versed in Future Leader Dog protocol (not unlike when you meet a working Leader Dog). They contained their ooohhhhs and awwwwws and stayed at their computers. A snuggly FLD Bear welcomed their gentle pets with no mouthing as I carried him from station to station. Afterwards they gathered round for questions and to hear Bear's story.

ON THE ROAD

Deb and Tammy and I were two hours late getting into the Chippewa Correctional Facility. Deb hoped that the guys had not given up on our arrival. "We were late last month too," Tammy said. "They guys weren't worried at all. They said they knew we would make it. 'You ladies are tough,' they said."


A picture taken from the back seat of a van, looking forward through the windshield. The view out the windshield is of a snowy road with trees along the side. The headlights of cars coming on can be seen. A woman with short brown hair wearing a purple jacket is driving.
Deb drives through the snow.


 Through rain or snow or sleet or hail, the delivery of puppies shall prevail.






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