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By:Jan Rifkinson 
Date: October '99 


1999 Bouvier Specialty
Olympia Resort & Spa, Oconomocowoc, WI

Arrival & Welcome 

Well, I had a blast @ the National Specialty.  That's in great measure because Nancy Eilks & her Illinois Club counterpart did such a wonderful job of organizing the events so to them, I say "thank you".  But it must have been some pain in the ass given the unwelcoming hotel we were staying at.

While the Olympia Resort & Spa was situated around a golf course & small lake, the hotel, itself, was a big third rate holiday inn with small towels, thin sheets, plastic cups, a lousy restaurant, soggy sandwiches & lots of rules.  And they had an "attitude" about dogs. 

I arrived on Sunday evening, tired but happy to be there. Truman & I walked wearily into the lobby directly to the front desk where we were summarily told that no dogs were allowed in the lobby.

Was it a dream?  Was there no "Hi, welcome to the Olympia Resort & Spa.  How was your trip?  May I have your name?  I'll be happy to check you in.  Normally we don't allow dogs in the lobby but since there was no sign on the door & no way for you to know this, let me check you in as it won't take but a minute."

Nope, it wasn't a dream. Instead when I asked if they could check me in since I was already there & it wouldn't take long, I was told "no -- no dogs are allowed in the lobby."

I muttered, took Truman back to the car & returned to the front desk to check in.  After the normal credit formalities, I was handed a map of where I could walk with Truman within the hotel & asked if I wanted a piece of plastic to put under my dog's crate.  I explained I didn't own a crate, Truman didn't travel in a crate & I didn't have a crate with me.

I was also handed a list of 13 rules.

One of my favorites was # 13: "Only crated dogs will be allowed in the elevators. Stairwells are available for uncrated dogs located both to the left of the elevators and at the end of each hallway."

So I mused out loud: Assuming I had a crate, I would take the dog of the crate in the room, carry the crate to the elevator, put the dog in the crate, take the dog out of the crate & take the crate out of the elevator.  "How about wheels under the crate?" my check in person suggested. Hmmmm.

"How many key cards would you like", she asked pleasantly.  "Two" I said.  "One for me & one for the dog."  She smiled & I thought I had made a breakthrough.  


Truman & I trudged up the dirty staircase to our fourth floor room, which I had requested so we could get a view of the place.  There we found an adequate room with two beds, both covered with sheets (to protect the chintzy bed covers), a desk & a chest of drawers.  Oh yes, there was a night table & TV.

I unpacked, hung my clothes on the no-steal-em hangers that are so inconvenient to use, put a cloth on the floor for Truman's dishes, got the gray fellow some foul tasting water, told him not to drip on the industrial carpet & opened the door to a small terrace. From there I could see an outdoor swimming pool (closed but not covered) & the small lake surrounded by condos.

By then it was early evening, Truman wasn't hungry, I was tired so we both fell asleep.  Only trouble was, I hadn't explained Central Standard Time to my boy & promptly @ 5:30am the next morning, I was being gently awakened by my kissing alarm clock.

And day 1 began.

click below for
Specialty Diary - Monday


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