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April 14, 2022: Raudhetta’s 19th Birthday

Hard for me to believe, but Raudi turned 19 today. In some horse circles, she’d be considered old. Icelandic horses are long lived, so I’d like to think that she’s in her prime. Tinni is 33, well past his prime but doing amazingly well. Hrimfara, who has a birthday in a few weeks, will be 10, and Tyra will be nine.

Age wise, a nice balance. There are no more young horse shenanigans. They all do what they are asked to do, for which I am grateful. I don’t like to be surprised by bucking, bolting, or rearing.

Pete took the photo of me on Raudi, holding the yearly signage. I presumed that she’d stand quietly and we’d get a nice photo. I presumed wrong. She kept moving around and her ears were pinned back. Pete was (as he is every year) needing to get to school, so he was a tad bit impatient. I got it, no we didn’t have all day in order to get the perfect photo.

Raudi at 19 was the quintessential Raudi – willful and impatient.

The snow berms were a fitting background. It appeared at 10 a.m. as though it was going to be another beautiful day. Pete asked me if I was going for a ride. I said no, I had to get over to the Palmer Senior Center and distribute books.

My decision was the wrong one. There was a concert about to start when I got there, and there was no room for seniors to access the library cart. All I could think was that I should have gone for that ride.

I vowed that I would go for a ride when I got back, and that was what I did. It was well after dinner when I set out, but no matter. It appeared as though we were to have a full moon tonight. Also, it was a bit chilly.

I was tired so I didn’t ask a whole lot of Raudi. We walked at a brisk pace to the Murphy Road turnoff, and on the return trip we worked on walk/trot transitions. We continued with a brisk canter, finishing at the Oceanview Road turnoff. I then walked her the rest of the way home.

I remain most pleased about the fact that she continues to have a kind look in her eyes, or what horse people call a soft eye. I have worked hard to cultivate this. Centered Riding Instructor did a portrait of Raudi, one in which, judging by her eyes and surrounding muscles, she appears to be extremely willful.

Pete asked me if Raudi knows that it was her birthday. I said yes, absolutely. It may not be that she thinks birthday, but rather, she remembers coming into this world, and the immediate events that followed.

Raudi remains the apple of my eye because she was my first Icelandic horse. That she was the most willful endeared her to me because in this respect, she turned out to be the best teacher of the four.

Happy 19th Raudi.

Next: 103. 4/15/22: Why do we do, what we do?

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