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October 14, 2018: More Tennis

I spent last evening and today with Susan Harris – we left Schenectady in the late afternoon and arrived in Cortland in the evening. We talked at length (of course) about horses and riding. In addition, we talked at length about the tenuous political situation. Susan rightly said that rather than leave, say, and move to Canada, that we should remain grounded and not budge. She added that those of us who are older have weathered equally worse storms, and that we who are wise and have seen so much, will weather this one.

Susan, at home, is surrounded by horse artifacts, paintings, statues, and tack included. I feel most comfortable in her den, where she has a very impressive book collection. Mine isn’t as large as hers, but we do have many of the same books.

Montezuma wild life reguge

She also has two very beautiful cats – their coats are glossy and they are well socialized. I was, beforehand feeling cat adverse – Cooper, Karol and Sally’s inside cat, had the night before walked into my room (I’d left the door open) and peed on my riding pants. Susan was gracious enough to wash it for me. If she had not the stench would have permeated everything in my pack and the pack itself.

Today we went road tripping, one of my favorite things to do. We went to Skaneateles Lake, which is not far from Cortland, and I admired the beautiful old homes. We ate at Doug’s Fish Fry, a local institution, and took the time to admire a wall-sized mural of the lakefront. It was replete with local characters, Doug and friends included.

We next checked out the polo grounds where Susan once worked, and then drove over to the Montezuma National Wildlife refuge where Canadian geese had taken up temporary residence. We also saw egrets, herons, ducks, and cormorants. I suspect that the geese will soon be heading south.

A vineyard was close by the refuge. I’d never before done a wine tasting. I would like to do another, perhaps going from vineyard to vineyard on horseback.

We resumed our horse-related conversations in the evening. Susan, who is also an artist, showed me what she’s currently working on, illustrations for a book by deceased Mark Russell – her drawings, done on computer, are of the spine, head, and hyoid area. As I understand it, the proper flexion of the entire area is to a large part dependent upon the hyoid apparatus. The illustrations made this far easier to comprehend.

We also talked at length about what shoulder in and leg yield are – I was afraid to ask what the similarity and differences might be because these are pretty basic maneuvers. But Susan put me at ease by saying these were actually good questions.

I then practiced these moves on the den floor and Susan coached me. I understand what they are, but am not sure that, without additional training, that I can do them on horseback. I just have to be patient. Someday I’ll have a teacher who might work with me on all this.

Next: 288. 10/15/18: A New York State of Mind

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