Puppywithapurpose has been offline for a few weeks because Rochester has been away on a trip so today is part1 of his holiday diary. Rochester has been in cars, walked, travelled by bus and train but usually the main purpose has been a training walk. Going on holiday has been his first chance to put it all together in a sustained week of “working”. Phew! And he’s still only 9 months old!
His adventure began with a long journey; longer than anything he has tackled before. The trip from Swindon to Edinburgh by public transport would be a test of his patience and his skills as a trainee Guide Dog. The day began with a free run at 5.30am to give him a chance to stretch his legs ahead of a lot of sitting around; although he didn’t know it yet! Then a bit of breakfast for both us before getting a lift to the bus stop. Rochester likes the bus and jumped on with great alacrity and headed to his favourite place by the window.
Next up was a train journey from Swindon to Cheltenham; again all familiar territory for him. Usually after a training walk like this he would be expecting to be back home and asleep. But instead we found another train, this time to Manchester. He settled down under my seat and fell asleep. Unfortunately he stretched out to much leaving his tail in the isle and unfortunately getting it run over by an unobservant traveller!
Manchester was busy! Certainly the busiest place he has been to so far. Lots of crowds, noise, traffic and distractions – all of which he took in his stride. Oh and rain; lots of rain! I had found a nice picnic spot where we could have our lunch and he could stretch his legs, but unfortunately it was under water so we had our walk in the rain and our lunch at the station!
By now it was 2pm and out final leg awaited us, a 4hour train trip to Edinburgh. So on top of his longest day out so far he had his longest train trip! Once again he got his head down and so did I! The train was delayed for an hour, which caused much grumbling and fractiousness from our fellow travellers …. But Rochester; well I’m sure you can guess; he slept!!
We finally pulled into Edinburgh 12 hours after setting off from Swindon. A real test of his guide dog character that I’m pleased to say he passed with flying colours!