Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Got stress?

This morning was supposed to be easy. Sure I had a reporter coming to the prison to see the K-9 Corrections program and ask questions, but that wasn't a problem. I'm not shy and I think I'm ok with public speaking. I was also confident in my handers skills. I like to think I am good winging it and didn't really have a plan beyond letting my handlers show off what they know with their dogs. It was raining but that was ok because we were going to use the gym to work. I wasn't worried about anything.

That was my first mistake. 

It started with a phone call. "Marie, did you know they took Sadie back to the shelter this morning?" "No what for?" "She has a vet appointment." Now I knew she needed to go get checked out for a possible urinary tract infection but I had told them about the reporter coming so they could schedule around it. "OK I'll give them a call and see whats up." I try calling the shelter. No answer. I call again. No answer. OK no problem. I'll go over to the shelter, thankfully I got an early start, and see if she is there so maybe I can pick her up on my way. (My stress had started to rise the moment I got off the phone.)

I get there and they said her appointment wasn't til 11:00. "Didn't so and so call you?" "Um no. I got no call." If I had gotten a call I could have told them I'd drop her off after the interview. Let me have her and I'll bring her back when we are done. Problem solved, so I think.

So I race us over to the prison. I tell the officer I am headed to the gym and he says, "You can't, they (the corrections officers) are training down there." "WHAT??" "Yeah I know, they told me there was no training this morning yet someone was wrong because they all showed up." Now I'm sure there is panic on my face. I head to the offices to see Sue. "Um do you know we can't use the gym for the interview?" "Why?" "Because they are having training and no one knew to tell us."  Now I get to see the panic on someone elses face. I am sharing my panic. There are many things people like you to share, panic is not one of them.

OK what area can we use? Hmmmm How about the library? With no other options the library it is. This means no rally course signs, there is NO room, which also means a new format for what we are going to do. I'm not sure what that will be exactly. Good thing I can wing it. (sigh) I go back to the front office and have him call over the handlers. Two of them didn't know they needed to show up because they had sent their dog back to the shelter that morning so they were late arriving. Then I had to send them back for their gear because they didn't know why they were called. (double sigh) Of course in the meantime the reporter and her photographer has shown up so we had to wait with them. I'm trying to look like everything is great. The surprise of the day was the photographer also took alot of video. I wasn't really prepared for that. Not that I would have done much different but I might have checked my hair a little closer. (curly hair and rain aren't a great mix, yeah I dread watching that!) I am praying they use video of the dogs and handlers instead of my mug. The dogs are way cuter anyway.

But the good news is that with all the stress before hand I think the interviews all went well. My handlers were very well spoken and didn't seem to be nervous. (I'll find out later if they were.) The reporter and photographer might be back on Saturday to get some more video of the actual Rally Course and the handlers in action with the dogs. (I really hope they do.) Well see how it all turns out. I'll be sure to share the link when the article is finished. I believe the time line is for the end of the month.

So the moral of the story is: Make sure EVERYONE knows when and where an interview is going to be so there are no fun surprises. Oh and always double check your hair, just in case.


Jan said...

At least you got some adrenalin going. Sometimes that helps in stressful situations

jen said...

Yikes, that does sound stressful!!
I'm glad it went well anyway, and how awesome would it be if they did come back for the rally course?!

Do share the link whenever available. And great job, even if the rain did muss up your hair :)

Marie said...

Hair aside, I just really hope they show the dogs and the program well. That is the most important part. Media scares me as they sometimes get stuff wrong.