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July 28, 2017: Chelsea Pet Resort

Today, a day of travelling, it was a road trip. I usually look forward to, and enjoy road trips, but today I wasn’t as up for this as I usually am. I guess I was eager to get here and get Raudi and Tinni settled in.

I’ve divided this adventure into chunks, so as to make it more manageable. 1. Road trip, to Fairbanks. 2. Disembark and spend an evening at Chelsea Pet Resort, where Ryder will stay the next couple of nights. 3. Head to ride camp at the Chena Road Community Center. 4. Check in and get evaluated. 5. Attend the evening debriefing. 6. Ride. Okay, so there are many parts, and parts of parts.

Got here and unloaded the horses. It was bit unnerving. Pete and I have taken our horses many places, and never before had this happen. We put Rio, Heather’s horse, in one panel corral, and Tinni and Raudi in one adjacent to it. There were approximately 20 horses in an adjacent field, and they all came up to the barn area to get fed. On their way, they stopped to interact with our horses. Tinni paid them all no mind – he watched them, but kept on eating and maintained his distance. Raudi went to “talk” to a few of the horses and switch her tail a bit. Nothing serious became of their interaction.

Rio – this was a different story. There was a lot of bucking and rearing, and posturing on both sides of the fence. Heather was both concerned and awed – concerned because she was rightfully worried about her horse getting hurt – and awed because she thought he looked so good. I have to say, he did look like a dressage horse – and now I understand why the riders try to imitate that fighting stance look. Me, I like the appearance of a laid back horse with a kind look in its eye. This is why I kept glancing back at Tinni, who is my ideal.

The barn help was close by, and he heard the horses caterwauling and squealing. He was unconcerned because he has most likely had to deal with this more than once.

We went out to eat with our good friend Sharon who is married to Sean, our oldest friend in Alaska. Sean was dipnetting in Chitina, so we did not get to spend time with him. Upon our return, we noticed that Rio has a small cut on the inside of one of his legs. My thinking was that he got lucky – it could have been far worse.

So tomorrow morning we head to ride camp and get set up. I am hoping we can get in a trail ride so that I can get a feel for how my horse is behaving. I don’t know if we are going to have the time. Heather and Pete are going to be working on saddle fit issues with Heather’s horse – wish this had been done by now. I have begun envisioning what the ride is going to be like. In the evening we’ll go over the route, at a debriefing meeting.

Again, I am hoping we’re going to be towards the rear and therefore won’t have many people to deal with. We’ll see. Anything can happen. I’m extremely tired. We are staying in an apartment tonight – lucked out. My friend Fran told us about this place, and they said we can use the facility. How nice is that? This is a real treat. It’s going to feel good to get a shower and hopefully a good night’s sleep.

Next: 206. 7/29/17: Off Center/On Center

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