Thursday, April 25, 2013

It's a Good Day to Die

That's what I told myself, anyway.  I any day really a good day?  So today was just as good as any other, I figured.  May as well at least go with a bang...or a buck...or a bolt...

So the first thing I did (after trying to kill myself on one of the Cowboy's spooky quarter horses) was go out and take a look at my wild, rambunctious, untamable hoodlums of the horse world known as mustangs.  And I said to myself..."Self, you may as well go big, or go home.  No point putting your life on the line at the end of the day.  May as well step right up to the plate and do the riskiest one first."

And that's just what I did.  I went out and sweet talked the oldest, wildest, most unpredictable of all my mustangs (not to mention the most beautifulest) and asked her, pretty please, will you let me put a halter on you today?

And she did.

After sending her in a few circles in the round pen, I pulled out the saddle and bridle and held my breath and put it on the Diva.  And again, she was good and allowed it.  And again, I told myself it was a good day to die, and to go like a brave cowgirl, not a wimpy little wannabe.  

I gave the red head a pat and stepped into the stirrup.  I reached across and patted her neck.  She wiggled her lips, but stood still.

Go big!  Go big!  I stood all the way up, still rubbing and patting.  First the shoulder and neck, then back behind the saddle on her hip and rump.  She stood patiently.  No fire, no flames.

And then there I was, up top, astride, back in the saddle again.  The mare I'd brought home as a seven year old, put a couple dozen rides on as a nine year old, was now standing quietly beneath me two years later as an 11 year old.  And no one died.

With that done, Darling decided she, too, wanted to get into the act.  Beamer's been out on a couple of trail rides this past week, packing me for a couple of hours each time, over bridges, through water, up and down hills, trudging right along.

Darling decided that Beamer needed to go English, so she pulled out her saddle and climbed aboard.

After a few laps around the pen, Darling decided that she'd be riding Beamer on the trails from now on!

As Darling was trotting about, posting up and down, I was saddling Flirt.  She's been at the bottom of the 'to do' list for quite some time.  Counting down to the Trail Challenge with Oz, and knowing I needed to get Beamer ready to sell, meant that Flirt was just going to need to wait. until I had a bit of time. I had a few extra minutes.  And, apparently,  a death wish.  So I saddled her up and for the second time this month, and then I climbed on board.

Maybe my death wish wasn't really as strong as I'd thought, because I didn't ask her to go anywhere.  Just climbed on and off a couple of times.  Or maybe it was that I was saved by the dinner bell?  City Boy called from the patio, and who was I to turn down a meal?

With nightfall creeping closer, and a full tummy, we sat down and watched a movie.  But my heart was still restless.  Something more needed to be done.  I returned to the barn as the sun slipped behind the trees and mosquitoes came out for their evening meal (seriously...blood sucking winged miniature vampires!)  I called to Oz, and saddled him up.  We made a couple of quiet walks around the pen, then I opened the gate and rode into the paddock where Flirt stood waiting, wearing her halter and lead.  She turned to face us and I reached out to pet her face, then slid my hand down her halter to her lead rope.

I asked Oz to turn and we headed back into the round pen, this time leading the two year old behind us.  Talk about the green leading the green.  And while it was a tiny space, there's still enough room to get into trouble.  The lead rope bounced off Oz's hip, crossed around behind him, even got clamped under his tail at one point (which I didn't know until I was ready to get off), and he just walked quietly while she followed nicely.

Seems it wasn't my day to die after all.  Good thing, because I have a trail challenge to go to in just...oh my word!...three weeks! 


Paint Girl said...

Fantastic!! Sounds like it was a wonderful day of accomplishments!!
And thank you for counting down the weeks for the trail challenge! I am so not ready and still don't know if I am doing in-hand or riding! It's going to be a busy few weeks.

cheyenne jones said...

Funny how those feelings of trepidation flow? The excitement, the rush as you overcome that slight fear.
Its always been the same for me with a new horse, always the same knotted gut. but I love it, as you do. When all goes well, which is most of the time the feeling of success is more relief!

Cowmama said...

I smiled when I read many times have I said the same thing!!

Shirley said...

I love seeing you on Tika! Keep it up please!!! There's no reason she can't become a good horse to ride, if you allow yourself the time to work with her. And Miss Flirt is sure coming along nicely.

Tracey said...

Jennie, you'll be fine if you ride. The gal I got Oz from suggested doing in hand on Friday, then riding afterward. I've not looked at the schedule to see if In Hand is early in the day on Friday or not, but it seems like a good plan! Get our horses climatized, so to speak :)

Cheyenne, I do feel that! Told myself yesterday there was no room for it, though. Can't be with Tika if you're going to be nervous. She may eat you alive if you show any fear, lol!

Cowmama, I think it's my new favorite line. A friend of mine said it when we took her trail riding for the first time in six years :)

Shirley, you and Darling both! She keeps telling me to get on and ride, because Tika will do anything for me. Even if it's just a walk around the round pen, she told me. Of course, she knows that if I get that far again, I'll want to go further. Heck...just watching that mare make a couple of turns in the round pen yesterday has me wondering if you can train an 11 year old to cut cows? Sigh...if she's not to scared, that is!

Cindy D. said...


froglander said...

You keep looking for your cutting mustang, maybe you've had her all along :)

redhorse said...

I hope what Froglander said is true. Good job with Tika. I know that feeling. I don't get to ride in the winter much, so every spring the first few rides give me those feelings. My gelding wasn't ridden until he was 4, he's 7 this year. I'll know he's broke when I don't feel that way for the first ride.

SheMovedtoTexas said...

Productive day!