Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Tuesday Trek and Summer Plans

I keep trying to block out a few weeks in which I don't have any appointments so that I can focus on working with Gabbrielle, but something always comes up like the refrigerator delivery and the broken down car.  Just when it was beginning to look like the car situation was coming to a close, I picked up the mail and received notice that my husband's latest emergency room visit had been rejected for payment by our insurance company.  Awesome.  Once again, it was looking like I was going to have to spend some time on the phone correcting other people's mistakes instead of riding my horses.

Fortunately, my husband offered to handle it, which freed up my time to ride.  Then I stupidly checked my email before pulling on my boots, and there were two more appointments I had to put on my calendar for next week.  Just a reminder that time is of the essence, because people will take it away from me faster then I can use it.

So, I went down to the barn to catch Gabbrielle, but she was being a total turd evading me.  Just when I was about to start spanking her, Bombay walked up to me and stuck his nose in the halter.  I paused.

I didn't want to let Gabbrielle get away with her bad behavior, but Bombay was also clearly communicating to me that he wanted my attention.  He was probably bored being at home all the time and needed to get out.  I decided to ride him and reward him publicly with plenty of peppermints, which would also serve as a punishment for Gabbrielle, who loves peppermints but would not be getting any.

Bombay's situation is that he hasn't been ridden on the trails for about six months.  I was riding him in the arena, but then he was showing signs of back pain, so I stopped riding him until the vet could check him out.  She didn't find anything significant, and the dentist said that Bombay hardly needed any work done on his teeth, so I felt like I had the all clear to ride him.

As we were riding up the driveway about to cross the street, I thought I heard an engine start up, so I waited.  Bombay is super good about holding still and waiting.  Whoever started their engine was farting around, so I was just about to cross the street when my neighbor came flying up over the blind hill.

She definitely would have hit us had I crossed just then.  She saw us, slowed down, and then changed her mind and punched it to get past us since we were waiting for her to get out of our way.

Once she got passed, I moved him forward and halted one more time to listen, because sometimes when one of these neighbors drives off in one car, the rest of them follow in other vehicles.  I didn't hear anything, so I crossed and once we were out from behind the bush next to my driveway, I saw that the biggest, loudest truck on the street had its parking lights on and was about to take off.  I hurried Bombay across the street and through the gate.

He could hear people doing stuff at that house and kept pointing in that direction.  The guy fired up his truck engine right when we were riding past his house on the trails and Bombay threw his head in the air and came to a halt.  He was tense, but once he realized that the truck was moving away from us, he relaxed.

Cutting a wide wake around his poop...

He's such a clean horse.  All the other horses would stop to sniff it, even if they know it just came out of their own butt just seconds before.  Overall, he did really well for not being ridden on the trails in half a year.  He was looky, but didn't have any significant spooks.  He got his hind end way underneath him and lunged forward, but I think he just slipped.

As we were crossing the street on the way home, there was a backhoe driving toward us.  I rushed him down the driveway before he could get look at it, because I'm sure he's never seen one of those before.  It looks like a giant insect.

His nervousness increased as he got closer to home, which was odd.  He was eyeing the bush where we found the dead dove, so I think he remembers javelina being there.

He always has to hang onto the bit when I unbridle him...

I picked out Rock and Gabbrielle's hooves and pre-treated them for thrush over the weekend, so I did it for Bombay and Lostine today.

I had planned to drop the sales prices on Bombay and Gabbrielle significantly right before summer, but I think I'll keep them.  I take good care of them, even if having four horses is too much work for me.  I just see a lot of things people say regarding horses on social media and it scares me to think that my horses might not go to a good home.

Just the other day I was telling Gabbrielle all the things I appreciate about her, because I know I tend of focus on her more obnoxious behaviors.  She has some traits that none of my other horses have, and that kind of makes her special.

1.  She's super responsive from both the ground and the saddle.  She handles like a sports car with power everything.

2.  She's always looking out for the herd, taking a leading role in their survival.

3.  While her acute awareness makes her my spookiest horse, it also makes her my best watchdog.

4.  She's very outspoken and I always know what is going on with her physically and emotionally.

5.  She keeps herself clean.  She's a self-grooming horse.  She sheds against the fence and encourages other horses to groom her, so I don't have to.  So, from a grooming standpoint, she's low maintenance.

6.  She never injures herself or gets sick, so her vet bills are limited to maintenance.  She was sick when I bought her, and she did injure herself a lot as a child, but now that she's grown up, she knows how to stay healthy.  So, from a health standpoint, she's low maintenance.

7.  She's super tolerant about being hugged and kissed, and she kisses back.

8.  She picks up her own feet when I'm ready to pick them out.  I love that, but for some reason my farrier was trying to train her not to do that the last time he was here.  I guess he likes to call the shots, but I know my horse is just trying to help.

9.  She's got that attention-grabbing beauty.

10.  She keeps Rock from bulldozing down the other horses.

I think I can put up with her excessive pooping, and bloating to avoid the cinch when I consider all of these positive traits.

And then, of course, I never really wanted to sell Bombay.  He was just my back-up plan in case I couldn't sell Gabbrielle.  I originally wanted the horses to be ridden and exercised more often than I can offer, but they seem happy either way.


Crystal said...

Nice ride on Bombay, hard to get rid of a horse like that. I feel you on selling its hard, I been trying to sell one and boy people just want a cheap horse I think. Now I got 3 people interested so I guess it's up to me, 2 came and tried and one really wants her at a lower price the other is waiting to see how much more training would be. Probly wants a lower price too.

Linda said...

What a great ride, especially since it had been so long. I would understand not selling them. I'm like you, can't stand the thought of something bad happening to them with irresponsible owners. I've also heard horror stories. Each horse has a vital role in the herd.

Mrs Shoes said...

It's too bad PS bought herself a horse because she & Gabbrielle got along so well (if I remember that right).
Have you ever considered doing a lease on one of them? Retaining ownership & control but seeing them be ridden on a steady basis?

If you found someone that you liked it could be a good option; I would think that someone who pays to lease is likely to ride regularly.
In your area there are probably a lot of snowbirds that are good riders but can't bring their horses with them who also visit on a yearly basis; it could be a win/win.

My Aunt & Uncle used to trailer down 18 horses (& 2 additional paid riders) from northern AB to Arizona every winter when they were still rodeoing steady.