Calm, Forward, Straight

Calm, Forward, Straight

Sunday, October 3, 2010

In the Arena #27 - When it rains...

Long string of bad weather here. One dry day since last Saturday. More on that later...

Might as well eat...
Happily, Val and I rode yesterday morning. We warmed up and worked on transitions, turning, and turns on the forehand, utilizing the cones I have had set up for the last few weeks. Nothing new, but it went smoothly. We had a nice, calm, effective session. The wind was whipping from the north bringing the coolest temperatures here since the spring. Oh, and black powder (hunting) season started on Friday. Val took a few sidesteps but I kept him (myself) focused pretty well.

Might be to soon to predict, but it looks as if the horses are not as worried about the nearby hunting activity as last year. It's not just the surprising gunfire that bothers them - it's the people sneaking around in the woods surrounding the property. Apparently most hunters are not quiet enough to sneak up on horses - the horses always know.

With all of the potential for scariness, I probably would have been hesitant to ride on another day, but it had been a quite a while and who knows what this week will bring.

I was kicking myself that I didn't bring the camera on board for this ride. Frankly, I don't need something dangling and swinging off of the saddle to add to my challenges with coordination and concentration... It would have come in handy though, when, while halted next to one of the cones, Val decided he needed to sniff and taste the cone... pick the cone up... swing the cone to and fro... side to side... throw the cone... punctuated by sidelong glances to make sure I was paying attention. If anyone was in earshot they probably thought I was losing it. Mind you, the cones have been in Val's space for weeks now, and haven't budged. Up to now, he has shown zero interest. Using humor to avoid work - a temporarily successful strategy :)

Back to the weather. We have had, depending on who you talk to, one tropical storm and three sub tropical low pressure systems since last Sunday. The upshot is at least 12 inches of rain, many roads covered with salt water, 20 - 30 mph winds daily and 50 - 60 mph wind gusts, and today several feet of sea tide that no one predicted. I happened to look outside this afternoon and see the road disappearing, so I rushed up to the barn to feed an early dinner while I could, and left my truck on high ground in town. I sloshed back home and took the girls out for a dog walk/wade.

Where's the land?


  1. Wow - all that water! Glad you had a ride and got through the first gunfire of the season. Ours started up this weekend too.

    Love the cone play - Val sounds like the pony, who will often pick things up like that while my daughter rides him, and will actually walk up onto the steps of the mounting block with her. I think he did it once and we thought it was so cute, she has taught him to do it upon request. They make tings fun, don't they? :)

  2. With all that water I hope you have a boat. I like the picture of the dogs, their probably thinking, "okay, now what"?

    I've said it before, Val is a real character. At least he's smart enough to be a clown to try and get out of work by making you laugh. He's priceless.

  3. Billie-

    Val helps me to keep it light with his silly side. Sounds like the pony has a similarly delightful personality :)

  4. Arlene-

    He is priceless... and seems to know his "activities" are cracking me up. I may have to control my laughter so we stay on track though :)

  5. That totally sounds like something Izzy would do! At my old barn, she liked to grab the helmet strap of anyone standing nearby and play with it, to include the throwing of said helmet into the air.

    They're such characters, aren't they?


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