In July Pete and I both participated in the Fairbanks based Challenge of the North Competitive trail ride. I’d messed up my ribs a few weeks before, came off Raudi and hit some rocks in a creek bed. So I was not up to riding in the Open category, as planned. I instead joined Pete and Tinni who moved up from novice to the two day Competitive Pleasure division. I came in second in horse conditioning to Pete and Tinni – my confidence had been upped by doing a pony club clinic that in part was taught by Dan Stewart, a fellow who knew a great deal about sports psychology.
While in Fairbanks, we nearly lost Ryder – our then house sitter Jennina Carney left her dog’s liver flavored Rimadyl on the table and Ryder scarfed it down. She spent a few days in the veterinary clinic, but then pulled through. It would have been a major loss, had she died. While in Fairbanks I also learned that my mother had had a stroke. She too pulled through. So, quite obviously, I was not in the best of spirits that weekend.
In August, Pete and I organized two local back-to-back Centered Riding clinics – both went very well. As Susan said, we did a great job of bringing Centered Riding to Alaska. After, I was able to ride with others who were familiar with the six basics – breathing, soft eyes, centering, body alignment, clear intent, and grounding. And these riders knew what I was talking about and vice-versa.
Had lots of dental work done in the spring and summer, which culminated with my having a tooth pulled a few days ago.
In November, I went to Europe for ten days. The first few days in Amsterdam were tough – I suffered from a serious case of jet lag. But once I met up with people things improved. I did a Centered Riding update clinic and also attended the 2015 Centered Riding Symposium.
The bad news came on September 21, and took the form of a phone call. My Dad’s wife Carol, in a flat voice, told me that my father had died of a heart attack the night before. I am still thinking of things I want to tell them, but then I catch myself and realize he is no longer around. A huge loss for me – made even larger by the fact that my sister Eleanor refuses to talk with me about this. I have been feeling as if I no longer have any family members.
As I wrote earlier, my younger brother Matthew also died this past summer. My mother is doing okay, but as I am well aware, she could go at any time.
A mild winter thus far. Been doing agility with Raudi – we blew the December competition – missed the deadline that was earlier than usual. Still, now getting in numerous rides, and looking forward to what 2016 will bring.
Next: January 1, 2016: Ringing in the New Yea