Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Flight To and From Iowa

Thought we would play a little game before we got started:

1.) Guess who got a flat tire the morning of the flight?....Us!
2.) Guess Whose camera bag the flat tire was covering?...Mine!
3.) Guess who didn't realize it till we were on the plane?...Me!!!
4.) Guess who has no pictures to show for the wonderful weekend we had?...Me!!

So by this little game, I suppose you have come to the conclusion that I have absolutely NO pictures to show you about our trip:(

We left last Thursday morning, around 2:30, to make a 7:00 flight. It was roughly 2 1/2 hours to get there so with Vance along, I wanted to make sure we had plenty of time. About 20 minutes into our trip, we had a flat tire on the car....yeah, so much for being early. We changed the tire (yes, this is the tire that was thrown onto the forgotten camera bag) and headed back home because no way was the car going to make it on the spare. We exchanged vehicles and were off again.
We got there, and thankfully there were some rocks near the parking lot, so Vance went potty there.
We got inside and since we checked in online, went right to security. Vance did great! I had him stay and wait while I went through the scanner first and then he came along. Of course, his cape and collar set it off and he got patted down. I don't really think being patted down was a bad thing for him, his tail was going a hundred miles an hour!
After security, we headed towards our gate and sure enough, they were boarding. We weren't late I guess, but we barely had time to think, just go!

Adam and I got two seats on the one side as they have 3 and 2. The flight attendants were SUPER nice! Even offered us a bigger better seat, but Vance had fallen asleep and I didn't want to disturb him.

He had a blast in Iowa! He experienced grass for the first time (when I got him, it was still winter, then we moved to Arizona with nothing but rock and sand), saw my family's chickens and saw itty bitty baby farm kitties. He also had a blast running around with all of my nieces.
I took him to visit where I used to work and only one person was there, whom I had worked with, the others were new so we got to chat for a few.

Sunday morning, we headed out to the airport and this time, security was a bit more tight than the other airport. They asked me to take everything off of Vance and I said that I would prefer not to. So in turn they frisked both me and Vance. I didn't mind, Vance loved it, but I'm sure they were wondering why I would refuse to take his cape, collar, Gentle Leader,
They told me that if I didn't take it off I would be subject to all that and I responded by saying that is totally fine, but He is a future working dog and he needs to be in his working mode.
They didn't seem too bitter and I was fine with it. Should I have taken everything off? Who knows, but both Vance and I handled it very well , I thought :)

After we boarded the plane, Vance and I took an aisle seat while Adam took the next one to me. There was another lady by the window seat who didn't even realize the dog was there, until she had to get up to go use the bathroom. I was hoping and praying Vance would be good as we were in the direct line of sight for several people, including a screaming child.
HE DID AWESOME!! Fell asleep for the whole flight and everyone stating how good he was and that they didn't even know he was there. Those comments make ya feel good :)

I took a few pics of Vance's "wings" and certificate he got on the flight. It was $3 for a certificate that all the crew members sign and his flight wings.

So Proud!

Annie seems less than impressed.

Yep! Well worth the $3 :)


Natalie said...

Oh my goodness - I totally thought you had run over your camera bag so at least that didn't happen lol. I applaud you for standing up to the airport people - they made Darrell take Egypt's harness off once and it totally pissed me off! She's a working guide dog! You don't do that! So good job you! I'm going to take one out of your book next time something like that happens :)

Kimberly and Abby said...

Once Vance is working, he will keep all his gear on, especially collar and leash, so handler can maintain control. Removing working gear is against security's own policy, but many of the workers don't seem to know that. You did good! I love his certificate and his little wings!

Lisa, Ellie and Hosta said...

I would have made them keep all his gear on too and just frisked him. It's policy they can just do a visual check too... but again, many don't know that.

The certificate/wings are so cute - especially for an AF dog!