Second Day At The Hotel

Here is the second entry about the pre class training at the
That i did for guidedogs. Again, it is backdated.

Well today, i woke up at about 7 o’clock to have a nice long refreshing shower to wake me up. Before i got in the shower however, i rang my friend just to make sure she was alright. She was, so i could then have my shower.

I headed out of my room at about 8 o’clock. We went down to breakfast then. My rehab worker stayed overnight on the first night, as he wanted to make sure we were alright. Apparently, during class, a GDMI will stay over on the first couple of nights, just to make sure we had no doggy issues or anything.

For breakfast, i had some toast, and a glass of orange juice. Again, the staff were super helpful. We went up to the lounge after that, to get ready for the day, and to wait for the other rehab worker, and a couple of other people.

During breakfast, i vowed not to talk about my gait for the whole day. I told everyone that i wouldn’t mention it. I lasted about half an hour lol.

Anyway, back to the days events.

At about 9 o’clock, the other rehab worker arrived. This was followed by another person arriving shortly after, who worked in the hospital referring people to the rehab workers if they needed to have mobility training. She later told me that she had once been a rehab worker. Once they had arrived, we could do some work.

I went out with the other rehab worker. We were all doing a “Block” route around the grounds of the hotel. It started at what was called the “Smoking” area, which we had learnt how to get to yesterday. The route was like a square. There was one part which didn’t really have a kerb, so when we were crossing that street, we were told to cross at a particular angle, by turning our boddies so that the road was kind of to the side of us. This would mean that when we crossed, we would be able to get on that small bit of kerb. The route was quite easy. The only problem we had was that there were some people working with saws and that, so it was hard to hear traffic and that. We managed the route though, and got back to the hotel at about a quarter to 11. This was after doing it both ways twice.

We got back to the hotel so that we could swap people we were with. This was to do another block route. A recently qualified GDMI came to meet us at this point. This was to do some short handle work. Anyway, I got the person who was a rehab worker, but now worked at the hospital with me to do this other block route.

We went out the front door, instead of the door at the “Smoking area”. I thought this was alright. The woman said that we were going to do a route that was kind of like a figure of eight. That was also fine until we got to a particular point. We were travelling right along a pavement, and when we got to the end, the woman was like “Now go left.” I thought this was really odd, as we would be going back on ourselves. I think that was what confused me. I also think that because we went out a different way than before.

I got back from that at about 12 o’clock. We were deciding if i should have my short handle walk then and there, or to do the route again that i had got confused on. I wanted to do that route again, but instead of going out the front door, i wanted to go out the smoking area door to see if that would make it less confusing. It did a bit, so that was good.

When i got back, i went on a short handle walk with the new GDMI. This was really good too. She told me all the foot positions, and she was just pure awsum!!!!!!!!!!!!! She was about my height, so i found it easier to montain the tention. I was quite amazed at how good i was with the praise, and the commands. I felt my confidence growing.

By the time i got back, i was soaked, as it had started to bucket down. I went up to change, but couldn’t get my card for my room to work, so just went down to lunch. I was already late ish as i was. I had the usual, Veggie soup, and a glass of club orrange. We were sitting on a couch type thing, and when i got up, my friend said that there was a big puddle where i was sitting. People must have thought i wet myself lol.

After lunch, I had time to change, as there wasn’t another GDMI coming until 2 o’clock. The new one left at about half 12 or so, after she had finished with me.

It was still pelting down at about 2 o’clock when I went back to the lounge. We all agreed that it would be bad to go out and do more short handle work, and end up drenched again. Instead, we just spent time with the GDMI asking questions. The other GDMI was there too from yesterday, with her dog Pip, but he didn’t come until later.

The GDMI asked if we were worried about anything, as we would be doing a dog walk on Friday. I had to mention that stupid gait. The instructor said that i need to forget about it, and let it be in the past. She says that anything i thought about the walk, i was to forget about, and just enjoy the walk. I asked if we could go through foot positions beforehand, and she said that would be fine.

During our block routes this morning, my rehab worker was out doing another block route with
The Trekker Breeze
Which is a talking GPS system for blind and partially sighted people. The Guidedogs association are doing a trial of this at the moment, to see if it would be good for giving to blind and partially sighted people when they qualified with a guidedog.

Anyway, it had started to brighten up at about 4 o’clock, so my rehab worker wanted to take someone out to try the breeze. We were orriginally going to do it on Friday, but we weren’t sure if we would have the time. My rehab worker said that i could go, since, my friend had already used it, and the third client didn’t want to go. The other rehab worker tagged along too to observe how the trekker worked. My friend and the other client watched a DVD about guidedog ownership. The GDMIs were still there.

Me and the two rehab workers got in the car, and headed off to where the new block route would start. My rehab worker said that it wasn’t to test me, it was to test how good the Trekker was. He guided me through the route first, just to get a bit of a map going in my head. He then guided me back, and we used the GPS. I stuck a speaker on to my collar, and then stuck the actual unit in my pocket, and off i went, followed by the two rehab workers. When my rehab worker had walked it before, he had recorded land marks that i would need to look out for, like “Cross this road”, or that there was a primary school where we started.

I found the Trekker really scary at first!!!!!!!! It didn’t really give much information, and the voice was quite hard to understand. It said at one point that we were going on to a place called Glentarran Park. I was also told that i had to indent along a road. I started to do this, only to realise that we weren’t on that road yet. The GPS said that you were on certain parts 10 metres before you got to them, but then didn’t mention anything at all. It sometimes wouldn’t talk until about 5 minutes after each bit of information.

We did the route on the way back, and it was much easier and much less scary when i was being sighted guided. I think the GPS would be better if you knew the route. I think it might also work if you use a guidedog. But to do it totally on a new route with a cane, i think it’s a big no no. My rehab worker says that he might try it on a route that i know.

We headed back to the hotel after that, where we chilled again with the GDMIs and got to see Pip who had been braught in. We chilled again until about 5 o’clock, when the GDMIs went home, and my rehab worker went home. The other rehab worker stayed with us instead.

The third client went to have a bath, so me and my friend had a bit of craic in the lounge until about 7 o’clock, which was dinner time.

I had Roast beef, roast potatoes, peas, and gravy. It was yum!!!!! I didn’t bother having a dessert, i just had a glass of coke.

My friend scared me when she said that she had got a coke, but she ordered diet. She said that hers tasted sweeter. I crapped myself, because she is diabetic, so didn’t want anything bad to happen. Luckily it didn’t which was good.

I decided to have two bottles of West Coast Cooler this time. It was nice. I was a bit worried in case it got me drunk, but i was fine. I baught the second round, where i got the second bottle, and was shocked that it was £9.20!!!! Apparently the West Coast Coolers were quite deer though. We all decided to go upstairs at about 10 o’clock.

When we were coming out of the bar, however, we got slightly lost. You have to go at a slight angle when you come of the doors to find the stairs. I was in the lead, and totally got the wrong angle!!!! I’m sure we looked like a right sight!!!!! A helpful passer by helped us orientate ourselves to find the stairs.

When we got up the stairs, we made ourselves a cup of tea and coffee. I was pouring the kettle, but was too nervous of it, since it was full and freshly boiled. We used one of the liquid level indicators that the Guidedogs had given us. I forgot how annoying they can be!!!!! How do you deal with a full kettle?

Anyway after that was out of the way, me and my friend braught our computers down to chill on the net for a while. Our internet time ran out, so i walked down to reception to get two cards which had the information on them that we would need for logging in to the internet. They were really helpful!!!!!!!!! Chatted away!!!!!! I rang the other rehab worker to get her to come down and read out the info on the cards, while i went down with the third client so that he could have a smoke. He wanted a bit of company so i went down with him.

We didn’t get to bed until about half 12 that night!!!!!

I was packing my stuff, as we would check out by about 11 o’clock on Friday morning. I discovered that i couldn’t find the lounge card. Panicking, i searched frantically but still no sign. I retraced my steps. Did i take it out when i was out? Did i have it when doing the short handle? Did i drop it? Did it fall out of my pocket? I texted my friend asking her what to do. She texted back saying that it was in her room!!!!!!!! I was so glad!!!! I had been in her room earlier talking to her, so must have left it there. I went over to get it then.

I was much less worried today. I felt much more relaxed.

That was the 2nd day at the hotel. I will post the final day tomorrow. I will write it tomorrow, but i will backdate it to Friday again.

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