Here is a shadow shot I took with my cell phone this morning on my ride back to the barn on dear Pie. I broke my rule about no cameras for a quick few seconds because he was such an angel today and loved every single second of our ride. You can see how wet the court is with puddles. We have had a few dreary rainy days and I think Pie was in a good mood with the sunshine and milder temperatures. My bareback ride on him on Tuesday was pleasant, but I did not attempt introducing him to the barstool-apple-friends' new playground. Today he was so good and I had a saddle, so I decided to go for it. First, I walked him out and around the field and cleared my mind of any preconceived notions that he would react badly. Our last closeup view of the playground was on the day of our crazy bad ride when Pie was snorting like a dragon. I know that we humans invite trouble by anticipating bad behaviours and I think even picturing them can be dangerous. I had to relax my posture and drop the reins and forget that horrid day. I pretended that I was seeing the playground for the first time and I could also see two yummy apples on the barstool! Hooray! But, I have to admit that I was slightly distracted when I heard the recycling truck approaching. I couldn't believe my timing, but the truck arrived exactly as Pie arrived at the barstool. The truck's air brakes hissed loudly and then the driver whipped glass bottles into the truck. The flags and swings on the new playground were waving and Pie...did absolutely NOTHING! He happily munched his apples and softly sighed. Ho Hum. Hooray for the good boy!
Yesterday, my Sovey was also the very best boy, just when I needed him most. All morning the rain drizzled down and made the prospects of riding, slim. After I returned from taking Maizie to the bus at 7am, I heard a scuffle around our house and saw Noodlebug fly into one of our back windows. I called to her and saw a stray cat run off and poor Noodle was bloody and beat up. Her little white paws were a mess. I cleaned her up and Brian and I tried to help her get comfortable on her window seat pillow/bed. The cuts were superficial, but I think it was her first experience with meanness. Maybe I am assigning human traits to her reaction, but it looked like she was shaken in her trust - even of us. I get worked up about these kinds of things and to top it all, I had a dentist appointment at noon to fix a broken filling. Ugh. Talk about depressing. I left Brian with our little kitty patient and the rain continued to pour. Happily, the dentist fixed my tooth quickly (and practically painlessly) and then, when I snuck in a quick visit to the horses at 2pm the rain stopped and the sun came out! I quickly groomed and tacked up the Sovey-boy and he spoiled me with a perfect ride around the trails in the woods and back. I gave him apples and grass and stuck him back out in the pasture by 3:15pm just as the sky opened up into another pouring rain. It rained the rest of the night! Our dear little Noodlebug was scared and sore all evening, but she is doing very well today, I am relieved to say.
Just now when I was getting Pie's photos off my cell phone, I found the above photo. I took this picture one day after my mom and I rode together. This is how she throws her saddle and saddle pad and girth in the grass when she is untacking. Every time I see this, it cracks me up. She is almost 67 years old and it looks like some kid was riding and just untacked and threw everything everywhere. After we ride, it always looks like a bomb went off in our barn and tack room and forebay. She will kill me if I don't tell the whole story - to be fair - Sovey isn't the easiest boy to untack. He can get very ouchy and sensitive to the untacking process. You have to be very gentle with him. He is getting better, and we are working on it, but she just whips everything off in a pile. (No need to caution us about what we are doing to the saddle - we know!) I so welcome these funny moments at the barn lately - this fall has been tough on me with my little girl, Maizie, heading off to middle school in the middle of the night. What will happen when she goes to college? I better get a whole herd of Thoroughbreds by then to help me through it. Just kidding, Mom and Brian!