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Amparo Bertram

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03:39 am: Canine training: Week 2
This week we finished up the last of our written exams. From now on we will just be working with the dogs. That includes everything from feeding them to cleaning their kennels, grooming them, taking them for walks, and of course practicing bag sniffing.

It just so happens that a group of supervisors is here for a two week training course, including my own supervisor from SF. On Friday, all of them had a chance to come in and watch us practice with the dogs for a few minutes. We did reasonably well during the observation, particularly considering that we've only been working the dogs for a week.

One of the students is having the problem that the dogs don't respect her, so they ignore whatever she tells them. She tends to "request" rather than "command," so the dogs feel that they can get away with disobeying. Our instructor is trying to coach her on how to be more authoritative and not to give in when the dogs act stubborn.

We were assigned our primary dogs on Friday, and I did get Benny. As long as everything goes okay, I'll get to keep him as my partner. If anything goes wrong (for example, if he gets injured somehow), I'll have to switch to a backup dog.

I got myself a slow cooker on sale last weekend, and I've been having fun experimenting with what I can make in it. (I've already had people ask me, "What can you possibly use it for if you don't eat meat?") Yesterday I made a loaf of steamed brown bread that was quite tasty. However, it does drive home the fact that, unlike Japan, it's hard to buy ingredients for single servings of anything here. I can't buy just one or two cups of flour if that's all I need; the smallest portion at the store is a five pound bag. Anyway, today I'm hoping to try making an enchilada casserole.

Comments

[User Picture]
From:skygawker
Date:January 30th, 2011 03:09 pm (UTC)
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I miss that about Japan too! It's really annoying. I am always buying packs of celery that I can never hope to get through before they go bad. I just want one stalk! Japan let me buy just one! (Also, shopping carts here are too big. I finally stopped having culture shock attacks when having to use them, but I do not like them.)
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:January 31st, 2011 12:14 am (UTC)
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I agree with you on both counts! I avoid recipes that call for celery because I know most of it will go to waste. And I really wish the grocery stores where I shop had small Japanese-sized carts
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:January 30th, 2011 04:14 pm (UTC)
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What can you possibly use it for if you don't eat meat?

I find that especially hilarious when I have an entire cookbook devoted to vegetarian slow cooker recipes.

Hurray for your partner Benny! I hope we get lots more pictures of him! (hint, hint)

Edited at 2011-01-30 04:15 pm (UTC)
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:January 31st, 2011 12:19 am (UTC)
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I have an entire cookbook devoted to vegetarian slow cooker recipes.

That soup you made was definitely inspiring. I bought myself this cookbook (which is where I got the bread recipe) and I'm hoping to try a number of the items in it.

I hope we get lots more pictures of him!

I charged up my camera battery, so I should be all set.

I can't wait until he gets his official CBP jacket. I'm sure he'll look good in uniform.
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:January 31st, 2011 01:19 pm (UTC)
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Ooh, the picture on the cover of that book certainly looks yummy.

Nothing like a handsome man in uniform! XD Can't wait to see pictures of that.
[User Picture]
From:mangaroo
Date:January 30th, 2011 09:22 pm (UTC)
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Awww, I feel bad for the non-authoritarian student. That would be me. I would want to be the dog's friend too much.

I can't buy just one or two cups of flour if that's all I need

Story of my life. I seriously don't want to keep white flour on hand when I need at most 2 tablespoons for a recipe every six months. And last night I went looking for a slightly smaller two-pound bag of whole wheat flour (I think that's the smallest I can find for bleached flour) so I could make chapati for my curry, and that was only available in the huge 5-pound bags. Some people live alone, grocery world.
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:January 31st, 2011 12:28 am (UTC)
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I would want to be the dog's friend too much.

I guess I'm lucky that I have a background in teaching. I know when it's important to remain firm.

And last night I went looking for a slightly smaller two-pound bag of whole wheat flour (I think that's the smallest I can find for bleached flour) so I could make chapati for my curry, and that was only available in the huge 5-pound bags.

Good for you for attempting chapati! That's something I haven't done yet.

I don't feel so bad about buying large quantities of dried goods at home, because I just store it until I need it. (Plus I use it more when I have a stove and oven...) However, there's not a lot of storage space in a hotel room. I'm just lucky that my uniform suffices for most of my clothing needs, so I have an empty dresser I can use.
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:January 31st, 2011 01:27 pm (UTC)
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You might try looking in the health food area of your grocery store, or maybe ask if they carry Bob's Red Mill brand, since they make all kinds of flour and they come in smaller bags. (My grocery store, for instance, has these in the same isle as the rest of the flour, but in a different area.)

(Interestingly, I just checked with the store finder and they don't list my usual grocery store, so I guess it's not the most accurate thing in the world.)
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:February 1st, 2011 10:54 am (UTC)
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You might try looking in the health food area of your grocery store

I'll see if they have anything like that. After all, it took me two days to locate the Morningstar Farms section, you never know what else I might be missing.
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:February 1st, 2011 01:04 pm (UTC)
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it took me two days to locate the Morningstar Farms section

Some stores put that stuff in the weirdest places, I swear. Like it needs to be segregated from the "normal" food in the freezer isle or something.
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