Monday, February 27, 2012

A (Possible) New Horse (?)

When I shared the news of losing Poco in December with my Frainer (friend and trainer) Rachel, I asked her if she would keep her eyes open for another horse for us.  Time passed as we went through the mourning period and today we are on the other side of our sadness.

Bob and I headed up for our weekly lesson this morning - and what an awesome lesson it was!  Rachel and I discussed "cow mentality" and then she simulated being a cow while Bob and I worked on sorting the poor women.  I can't speak for Rachel (or Bob) but I sure had a lot of fun chasing Rachel around the arena and trying to predict what she'd do next.  :)

About half way through our lesson a horse went by, being led to its stall.  Rachel mentioned to me that two horses had arrived yesterday and she thought one of them might be a possible perspective for replacing Poco.  We talked a little about the subject horse, but then being the task master that she is, we went back to "playing cow".

As we finished our lesson Rachel told me a little more.  It's the sad but typical story.  A family that has lost interest in their horses, including caring for them.  The perspective horse, 12-years old, was ridden by the daughter until she lost interest and then by the husband for trail rides (until he lost interest).  Husband knew nothing about riding horses.  The horse is reported to be gentle, steady and tolerant. 

Rachel told me that in a few hours she'd be putting her first ride on the horse, did I want to watch?  Oh did I!  I loaded Bob up and headed home.  Returning just in time to join Rachel as she went to get the horse out of his stall.

A 12-year old Thoroughbred.  Neglected in care and feed but appeared gentle and easy to handle.  Here's Rachel cleaning his feet, which he lifted up willingly.  He stands at about 16.1+ hands, (a good size for my tall husband).  Thick chest.  Comments from "the audience" (that joined us to watch) were that he looks more like an Appendix Quarter Horse.  Big, deep, soft, gentle eyes that one can get lost in...

Willing, loads, leads and (gotta love this) as I observed (and the audience ahhhhh'd over) - a smooth jog (the kind where you could jog and drink a cup of tea and not spill a drop).  It's reported the horse raced for one year and then went to a trainer to become a pleasure horse...and you can tell someone put some time into him even if it was years ago.

So we'll see how it goes as he fattens up and gets his feet in better shape.  If he's still as gentle then as he was today, he may be the right horse for us or he may become a fire breathing horse that feels better and doesn't fit what we are looking for.

If there's one thing I've learned it's to let this whole thing play out and not be in any hurry.  And even if I was in a hurry, I'm grateful to have Rachel, my second (common) sense, who isn't going to let us go down that path unless it's the right horse for us.

Sigh.  But he sure is cute!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Fair Weather Rider

HOW COME we can go for weeks and weeks with rain, wind and even a blade of sunshine.  Yet about a week before the day to go sorting arrives the weather people start talking doom and in low temps and snow?

     I don't mind rain.

          I don't mind wind...well, maybe I do if it's gusting above 35 mph and stuff is flying all over the place.

              Sunshine?  Duh.

But when the temps are in the low 30's and that white stuff starts falling, it's not my idea of fun to haul my horse some place, let alone sit on him for a few hours (and I bet he agrees).

Don't get me wrong.  I LOVE sorting.  But it's one of those events where you're in the pen moving all over the place or you're sitting idle waiting for your next run.  I would be happy to do some schooling on the BobMan in-between runs.  ...Tried that before but was asked to get back in line with everybody else.

So BobMan gets the day off tomorrow while I meet my non-Cowgirl Pals for a long overdue lunch. 

Instead of boots and jeans, I'll wear...

Boots and jeans.  I may be a fair weather rider but that doesn't mean I'm not a rider.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Up on the Roof...

It's an annual "thing".  Every year about now, if we haven't already, the roof at the cabin must be shoveled.  Sometimes it only needs to be shoveled once in the winter.  Other years, it has to be shoveled multiple times.  There have been times in the past where the snow was so deep that we had to shovel it UP off the roof vs down.

I know who they are but their names are safe with me (and my childhood memories)...those who roofed our cabin, placing the corrugated tin in the wrong direction so that the snow will NEVER slide.  Oh, if I only knew then (when I was seven years old) what I know now!  But they wouldn't have listened to a 7-year old anyways.

The picture above was taken a few weeks ago when my husband headed up to the cabin to do the yearly task.  This year the deep snow had been soaked by rain, making the weight on the roof dangerous.  It had then frozen into a (very hard) crust of ice.  One could actually walk anywhere they wanted outside and not sink down in the deep snow.  Very nice for a walk but not so nice for shoveling a roof.  In fact, miserable for shoveling a roof (or more miserable than usual).

My husband knows the drill (although he surely doesn't like it).  He took four days to shovel the roof, knowing that slow and steady wins the race (and avoids health issues).  Fortunately, good weather was with him while he worked and (this year) he didn't fall off.

And here is the end result.  Since this picture was taken we've had more snow but thankfully it's almost March and we know that spring will be here soon.  This year we (my husband) got off lucky with only having to shovel once.  But next year?  One never knows...

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Back in the Saddle

Today I finally got a chance to ride at home.  Seems whenever I've got time to ride, it rains and when I don't have time it's sunny.  My weak link is getting on.  I've been working on that during the weekly lessons I've been taking up at the barn where I used to board.  During those lessons I've been getting off and on multiple times.  It's helped. 

Although I still miss Poco, I've come through the other side of mourning.  My passion and joy at riding are back - full throttle.  The one-on-one time I've spent with Bob at home has bonded us.  We head out with my Cowgirl Pals this Saturday to go sorting.

And as you can tell by my goofy smile (after giving Bob multiple hugs (and kisses) after today's ride at home), I'm back in the saddle!  :)