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March 15, 2015: Too Much Weather

It was bound to happen – that is, that we’d experience some winter weather. However, no one expected this is occur in Mid-March. I for one breathed a sigh of relief when the end of February arrived, for I thought we were going to have an early, and record-breaking breakup. The sun was then shining brightly, there was heat in that sun, and the sun was melting the ice.

Then March rolled in, bringing with it rain and snow and sleet mixed. Then the temperature dropped, and stayed dropped. Ice became a problem for us, and a bigger problem for other horseback owners/riders. The cold,

combined with the wind, this is what after a few days gets to be. It’s laborious and time consuming, putting on untold layers and making sure my hat is on my head and my gloves are on my hands. I’m at heart three years old, I just don’t want to deal with that stuff. But then again, if I lived in someplace really warm, I would not want to deal with putting on sunglasses and sunscreen. It’s all relative, aunts and uncles included.

I’ve been staying warm when outside, but when it’s cold I begin to move more slowly. My glasses also fog up if I put my Refrigerware hood up on my head. And the animal chores take more time, watering the horses being a good example. The water has to be heated on the woodstove, loaded into the sled, and dragged down to the barn. The ice on the hanging buckets needs to be busted up with a log round, set aside for that very purpose, and then fished out with an old fryer basket. And the warm water then needs to be poured into the buckets. If there is too much cold water in the buckets, they need to be emptied before the hot water is poured into them. Watering the horses is a whole lot easier when its warm and all I have to do is turn on the spigot connected to the large water container on the side of the enclosure

It’s now 12:04 p.m. I’m looking outside. I have a side window next to my writing desk. It’s now overcast, blustery, temps are still below zero. There are patches of snow and patches of ground on the hill leading up to our guest cabin. In a few minutes, Pete and I will meet in the kitchen and discuss the afternoon plans. Right now, at this very moment, I’m leaning towards staying inside this afternoon. This will mean that I’ll stay warm. Conversely, the dogs and horses won’t get any exercise. Pete, knowing this, might persuade me to go for a ride. Then again, he too might be leaning towards staying indoors.

I guess that I’m at the 18 mile point of the winter marathon. I’m thinking that I can get away with blowing off getting the animals out because spring is really around the corner. It’s not like winter is going to keep us immobilized much longer. We’ll see. Five more minutes before making a decision. That’s the rallying cry around here.

Postscript: As it turned out, we did go for a ride, on our trail system. Pete was the motivator. I was out tending to the goats – he was standing by the porch step when I came out of the shed. He was wearing his Refrigerware suit. He then suggested that perhaps we should instead go for a walk – but added that he’d first have to put on a lighter coat. I said “let’s go for a ride,” because I didn’t want to wait for him to change.

As it turned out, it was a really good ride. I have determined that Raudi really does like being out front – she is polite about it when she’s behind – she doesn’t attempt to forge to the front. But she likes being able to see what’s ahead. And she isn’t bothered by the noises behind her when she is out front. Two weeks ago I duct taped my clicker to my crop and began rewarding her for going slowly down to the hills. She immediately figured out that this was what she was supposed to do. This has worked well for us. I now need to put more time and effort into keeping myself better balanced.

It was a chilly ride. Pete saw what he said was a wolf, over in the draw. Ryder took off after it, but returned to us a few minutes further into our ride. All in all, a very successful outing.

Next: 71. 3/16/15: Blue Ribbon Raudi

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