Alys: Hrimmi, been wondering what’s going on in your head?
Hrimmi: Really want to know?
A: I would not ask if I did not want to know.
H: I don’t know.
A: This conversation is off to a good start.
H: I’m glad you think so.
A: How is life treating you?
H: Oh, could be better. My teeth have been bugging me.
A: Is this why you’ve taken to chewing on the shelter walls?
H: Yes and no.
H: Feels good
H: Just bored.
A: Well, the boredom. I understand. You are not yet a Squalor Holler Beast of Burden. But you are seemingly full grown and very energetic.
H: Oh yes. I can run circles around old Tinni.
A: I’m sure he appreciates that.
H: I said I can run circles around him. But I don’t. That makes the poor guy dizzy and consequently grumpy.
A: Teeth. You know, I just had a rear molar pulled.
H: I know.
A: How do you know?
H: Your breath is absolutely putrid. It’s like a worm crawled in your mouth, crapped, and then crawled out.
H: Don’t mention it.
A: I won’t.
H: Do you feel like chewing on the shelter? If so, you can join me. There are two good spots right to your left.
A: No thanks. Hrimmi, I wanted to explain to you what’s going on in your mouth.
H: You think I got bad breath or something?
A: No. You said you are in pain.
H: That’s right. But I don’t want to know what the problem is.
A: Sure you do.
H: (Rolling eyes skyward) Go ahead and tell me. You’re the one with thumbs.
H: Yeah, you have thumbs and I do not. So you get to call the shots.
A: Okay. Listen up. According to my book, Horses’ Teeth and their Problems: Prevention, Recognition, and Treatment, there’s some significant stuff taking place in your mouth right now.
H: Tell me about it.
A: Okay, I will. Right now you’re 3.5 years old. You are losing your intermediate incisors.
H: You mean I’m losing teeth? How am I going to eat? I’ll starve to death.
A: The temporary incisors are being replaced by permanent ones.
A: And when you’re 4.5 you’ll lose your corner incisors. The permanent ones come in at age 5.
H: You don’t say.
A: I do say.
H: Anything else? Raudi told me that soon you are going to have to have The Talk with Me; that is, the one about the special things that happen when a filly becomes a mare.
A: I’m leaving that to Raudi.
H: She don’t tell me nothing.
A: Well then, let’s save that topic for a nice, warm, spring day.
H: It’s your call. . . .
A: Yeah, I know, I’m the one with thumbs.
H: Anything else?
A: Oh yes. It could be that the last of your back cheek teeth are coming in. Hard to say. I’ll have to take a look. But I’d wager that your intermediate molars are what’s bugging you.
H: You got it.
A: Well, I’m sorry that I’ve been so impatient with you about the wood chewing. I’ll make sure you continue to get plenty of willow branches to gnaw on.
H: Do I have to share them?
A: Yep. Ours is a Socialist household.
H: I figured that.
A: I have one more question. Are you okay with having a bit in your mouth?
H: I’m okay with this. It just sits there when we go for walks. What’s it for?
A: Gentle pressure on your mouth will alert you to the fact that I’m wanting you to make a gait transition, that’s when I start riding you.
H: I thought Pete was going to ride me.
A: Me first.
H: That’s a long ways off, right?
A: Oh yes Hrimmi, a long ways off. Don’t start fretting just yet.
A: Anything else to add?
H: Yeah. Why don’t you and I chew a bit on that shelter door? It would make your mouth feel better. And it would take care of your putrid breath.
A: Thanks but no thanks.
Next: 7. 1/7/16: Build it and They Will Come