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September 14, 2013: Messing with Horses

You’d think that after four months of riding, caring for, and interacting with horses on a daily basis that I’d now want to do something different. This was not so. As Pete said, I have the gene. I have actually begun to think that I might have Ausberger’s Sydrome, or a variation thereof.

The day dawned slightly foggy and chilly, but soon changed. By 9 a.m. it was sunny and hot. The original plan was to go and visit with Robin’s Icelandic horses. Robin was reluctant to ride because she’d been having stumbling issues with Falki, and most recently, her other horse Drago lost his balance.

So we headed over to the area boarding stable after eating a huge breakfast. From the onset, I was impressed with the facility. First appearances count for something – in this case there was a mowed front area, and bronze horse statues at the gate and in the yard. Upon further inspection, the place turned out to be a dream set up—that is a place in which most would gladly board their horses. There was a beautiful, clean barn, and an adjacent arena. And behind the barn, run out shelters. I looked for a manure management plan, but didn’t see any manure. Where they put the stuff remains a mystery to me.

The place, in terms of high degree of care, professionalism, and calm, reminded me of a barn that I once visited in Gladstone, New Jersey. There, jumpers and hunters were being prepped for the Olympic trials. Here, a variety of differing breeds of horses were being trained and used for a multitude of purposes, including therapeutic riding.

Robin introduced us to Falki and Drago, who were in the run out area. Falki was quite friendly, and Drago, maybe less so. I really took to Drago because he reminded me of Raudi – a potentially willful horse.

We saddled ours and Robins horses and went for a ride on a trail adjacent to the barn. It was not a long ride by our standards, but it was fun to hack around the edge of a large field. In a bit, Robin noted that Drago jerked his head up when she rode him. Pete and I had her get off, and I tied Raudi, who was being a ditz, to a nearby tree. I was pleased because my trained trail horse immediately calmed down. We watched Drago’s movements under saddle and then minus a rider. I also did some body work. It seemed to me as though he was a bit tender in his front legs. Still, Robin opted to return to the barn. Pete and I kept going, and met her back there.

We next went into the arena, and rode around a bit. Raudi and Signy weren’t at all forward at first. This was in part because it was hot, and in part because it was boring to them. I decided to tie Raudi up, and have Pete pony Robin’s horses. This went really well. Signy, now having a job, perked up and did what was asked of her.

Done, we bathed all the horses, then after putting Robin’s horses away, loaded ours back into the trailer and returned to Robin’s place, where they resumed dining on fresh Idaho grass and hay. I would have like to have taken them into Robin’s basement apartment, for she has air conditioning, but wisely figured that this would be taking a liberty not fitting of a house guest.

Next: 176: 9/15/13: High Maintenance