|Mental age: 3|
Actual age: 16 in April
I knew as soon as Red & Rusty "The Instigator" wheeled and took off after coming to me & receiving their baby carrots that I was in for it today. There are approximately 3 days every year when I cannot catch my horse. I usually have no idea they're coming, and there hasn't been a pattern or trigger that I can tell. Today was Day 1 for 2011. The snow is still over hock-deep in their pasture, and its pristine expanse attests to the fact that they have been sticking to the compacted areas and not wandering around much. I guess if you're not going to let me catch you, you can get a nice workout by trotting & cantering & galloping through that deep snow. It was a great theory which I presumed would lead to efficiently obtaining control of my pony. Not so much... He and Rusty managed to cavort, kick up their heels, show me the whites of their eyes, froth & sweat, and generally flip me the bird for at least 15 minutes, at which point they were both breathing through hugely flared nostrils, sounding like monstrous bellows. Red took one last half-hearted romp into the pasture from the paddock, realized Rusty wasn't following him, and then turned and walked right up to me. Yep, that's my boy. Ridiculous, really - and, I admit, kind of fun to watch them run. Of course I had left my camera in the car at this point.
Once I had my sweaty horse in hand, I thought I might have a nice ride, since he'd already expended so much energy. Oh, was I wrong! I saddled (yep, SADDLED, BRIDLED, and used his MARTINGALE), walked to the end of the driveway, checked the girth, and hopped up (oh! what a stretch! one side effect of riding in the bareback pad all winter, with which I require an elevated mounting device to get on, is that my legs aren't used to the s_t_r_e_t_c_h to get up to that stirrup.) We set off down the paved road, as it was mostly clear, and I wondered how the ride would go, given that Red has issues with "splashing" noises, as from cars driving through the melted snow puddles. Well, splashing didn't even register on his radar today... but seeing a horse in the distance sure did! Mind you, this is the same horse that has lived in the same pasture the entire 7 years that Red has lived at this barn. Today, however, he slammed to a stiff halt, threw his head up as high as it will go, and snorted for all he was worth. Alarm-snorted, over, and over, and over again. He refused to budge. Those hooves were absolutely glued to the ground. I quickly realized that asking, telling, and demanding that he go forward was utterly pointless, so I dismounted, unclipped the martingale and reins so I could use the reins as a lead, and lunged him right there on the stinking road. Useless exercise in this case, but it vented a little of my frustration with him so that I could proceed to hand-walk him the mile to my farm.
|Ok, I love this view between my horse's ears even on a "bad" ride day (is there really such a thing? At least I was out there!)|