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September 27, 2017: Let ‘em eat Hay

It sounds like in the dispatches that I have been writing for some time now as though the horses and I agree on everything. Not so. On some days we do not see eye-to-eye. On these very days I despair and wonder if the time and energy I am putting into tending to their every want and need is worth it. I mean, if I wasn’t spending so much time with them, I might have a full time job. For sure, I would now have several books out. Instead, I have little to show for my time, and far less to show for my time when we disagree.

For instance, a few days ago I rode Hrimmi, and for reasons I still have not yet figured out, she would not turn to the left. This was going up a hill on Peaches trail. She kept on going, into a swampy

meadow and refused to return to the trail. What to do? I got off her, waded through the swamp back to the trail, and walked her home. I did not hit her although I was fuming.

Yesterday, I took Raudi on a longer ride. We were coming to the end of the Spike Fork trail when she suddenly did a 360 degree turn, sending me into the stratosphere and then back down to planet earth.

And today, oh today. I first rode Raudi and ponied Tinni. Raudi was a little too grass obsessed because I have cut back on her food and that of the other horses. I could deal. Tinni moved right along, and aside from losing his Boa Boot, it was a good ride. Then I had this bright idea, which was to ride Raudi and pony Tyra. In the past she would go a short ways and stop. I figured that since she has been a riding horse for some time, that this was past behavior. I figured wrong. It was present behavior. Every few yards she stopped. I backed Raudi, the line went even slacker than it was, and off we went. I know that Raudi was impatient – what horse wouldn’t be? So aside from going over a few times to eat some grass, she did commendable. I went half way around our neighborhood loop before deciding that enough was enough. I dismounted and walked both horses. I did not hit Tyra although I was fuming.

Once home, daylight was waning. I had two options. The first was that I could do some play with the horses in the playground. Or I could try an experiment – and this time ride Tyra and pony Raudi. Well, I suspect it would have been more fun for both horses had I gone the playground route. However, there was a part of me that really wanted to know if I could go places, riding Tyra and ponying Raudi. I saddled and bridled Tyra, unsaddled Raudi, and while leading both horses headed down to the mounting block. I am happy to report that reversing horsey roles worked quite well. Raudi did one grass dive, but that was it. I did not go far, just a hundred yards or so, and just enough to know that should I want to take two horses out, that Raudi and Tyra are a good combination if I ride Tyra and pony Raudi.

Horses. Like men. You can’t live with them and you can’t live without them.

Next: 268. 9/28/17: Black Dog

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