Another Glory Weekend!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Every Monday morning at work my coworkers ask how my weekend was and every Monday I tell them it was awesome. Because of LILLY!!! Saturday, while Brandon was home replacing a kitchen window (lucky him), I scooted off for a ride! When I got there I saw Bill had been working too--patching this big hole in the run-in shed that I have been complaining about. I should add that Bill thinks I am anthropomorphizing by insisting they will be cold without this repair. All I know is that I myself will feel better knowing that giant hole is plugged up. 

 Not a bad view at all from inside the run in. Mmm, it feels so toasty in here after the repair!! And look, there is my brumby waaaaaaay across the property right when she knows I'll be showing up to ride her. You bet she saw me walking into the pasture! She ignores me all the time!

So I walked over to get her. You can see the run-in way in the distance. Even when I got close to her, she didn't move a muscle toward me at all.  The new Arab (now called Mookie) came right over and so did Ruby. They are super friendly and engaging creatures.

Back at the barn, I got to see how dirty my brumby really was. Yegads, that's a dirty foot.

 Speaking of feet, look at these giant shoes Bill found! Aren't they crazy?

They make my brumby's feet look so dainty! Just like Cinderella!!!

There's the dainty foot without her shoe on. Bill popped her shoes off last Sunday because it was time for a trim. It is important, because of Lilly's feet issues, to stay on top of her trims. We thought if she wasn't ouchie, the shoes could stay off.  We optimistically have that same thought EVERY TIME the shoes come off. But on the road when I took her out of the soft and comfy pasture, she was tender. 

Bill was around and started getting her feet in order right away. Lilly was VERY GOOD and hardly wiggled at all.

With new shoes on and still some time left in the afternoon, we headed out!

Bill decided to take Mr Mookie. He has only been out on the trail maybe 5 or 6 times before. So this would be part of his training.

During training sessions with Mookie, sometimes he'll get a little fresh at first. Not because he's malicious but because he's only 4 and he's not in a giant pasture zooming around all week. So he releases some energy in the round pen first. Before we set out on the New Trail, Bill started him around the round pen.

Bill put Mookie through some of a few other paces too. He was not interested in this water crossing. Lilly was called in to set the example (as she often is) but she was so aggressive toward dear little Mookie that I believe it put him in a nervous mood. The subsequent trail ride was far from perfect. Both horses did not want to move forward along the new trail. Lilly pinned her ears and tossed her head around at Mookie like a really mean lady. There was much hemming and hawing and head tossing. The mud by the creek was so deep Mookie got trapped in it and fell over. No one was hurt. BUT, after all this drama and then seeing a hunter ride by on his 4 wheeler, we decided to head home. Back in the ring Mookie was fine.

I hate to say it, but I think Lilly played a big role in the day's trail misadventure.

The next day the weather was crappy but I went over to ride anyway. I brought Lilly up to the barn and discovered this bloated tick on her and almost threw up. I didn't even want to touch it. It was so huge it's own little legs had been absorbed. Very. Vile.

I decided to re-conquer the New Trail after yesterday's mishap. So we returned to the scene of the muddy crime. Here we are. OK, so as usual, the photograph does not tell the whole story. This picture make this area look totally innocuous!!  Suffice it to say that there is more here than meets the eye!

Lilly is absolutely not allowed to jump across the creek. Any creek. She must walk across, one hoof at a time. I could tell she was thinking about jumping. And I know why: the bank is not beachy; it kind of drops off into the water. Still, no jumping! In the end, she mosied across just fine. What a good brumby. I gave her a carrot nibble for that.

This new trail is far from the open wide snowmobile trails that we are often on. Lilly wanted to stop and peer around all over.

 I may have mentioned that after the New Trail is over, it meets up with the regular trail. And you can take that trail just about anywhere. But one circuit of trails that I have not really explored before are right on Bill's land just past the New Trail. I decided to try and check them out.

 Hmmm, this behavior is certainly nothing new!

 Here's a little meditation shack belonging to the guy whose land is adjacent to Bill's. I'll call the Meditation Trail for now.

Here's my brumby about to pass under some Tibetan prayer flags by the meditation shack.

This little network of trails is so awesome! The good news about them is that even if you don't mark your path, there is no real way to get lost because one circuit   will always run into another, and also because it is so close to the pasture. The bad news is that because it really is so close to home, Lilly was forever trying to head back there. She knew we were a hop skip and jump from her hay pile and her horse buddies. Even though it looked and felt like we were far away in a magical land.

 I took this photo only to show how bobble-head-like I look in this helmet! I had to use it instead of my usual one because I had a hat on under it and needed this bigger size for the hat to fit. But it was so huge and bobbley that I looked ridiculous!  What's worse is that the helmet pressed the seam on the hat into my forehead so later it looked like I had a lobotomy scar on my face. Thank goodness the Equine Affaire is coming up so I can get a helmet that can accommodate winter gear without looking so silly. Because people were really staring at me in the grocery store.

As an aside I will add that my husband thinks anyone who rides horses has already had a lobotomy.

Dinnertime! Look how my brumby is throwing her head around at Pokey for simply walking by!

 UH OH! Looks like Sophie is bossing my brumby around again! A little pony!!!!

Ahhh, now that's better. All's well that ends well.

Parting shot:

Cinderella pumpkins in honor of Lilly's Cinderella feet!!!!

Dead Tree Trail on a Slow Poke

Monday, October 20, 2014

 What in the world? Is there a horse under all that dirt? I wish I had seen Lilly rolling away on the ground to get this dirty. I bet it looked supercute. Bill is so lucky to look out his window and see such supercute horse antics all day.

 Once I brushed all the dirt off of her (and inhaled it into my own nose), I was able to see how Lilly is starting to get her winter coat! How fleecy!

 Then I tacked her up and we headed out. I was traveling solo; Bill was at a wedding and the place was a ghost town.

This is Bill on his way to the wedding. I was so busy squawking over seeing him so dressed up, I couldn't even focus the camera. It is not every day you see Bill in a tie.

Lilly is my favorite trail companion, even if she takes two steps and stops to nibble ferns, and then takes two steps and stops to look around, and then takes two steps and pulls her head around for a treat. What an annoying way to get started. OK, it's cute. But it is also annoying, even if I really only have myself to blame for such behavior.

Since ferns have come up, let me make clear what ferns Lilly nibbles. She prefers the soft, feathery ones, shown on the bottom in this hilarious photo. Lilly the walking fern gallery. Wouldn't Audubon love her?

I am not sure how, if we are moving at practically a negative speed limit on the Short Trail, my crop could end up down there.

Oh oh! New road block on the Short Trail! Looks like a job for a chain saw.

I found this little fella when moving a rock in the middle of the trail. He's a redbacked salamander, the most common salamander in the bay state.

Another rump gallery! This one devoted to autumn leaves. Look at that giant one! I have no idea what tree that one is from. Which is pathetic because I have probably ridden by that kind of tree a billion times. Special thanks to my brumby for letting me drape her bum with nature.

I guess every generation has its litterbugs.

On the way back from the Ridge Trail, we popped into this pasture that Bill used to use a lot more when I first bought Lilly. Now the horses aren't in it very often. But on this particular day, it looked beautiful.

Here it is from the other side. Walking along the fence around the edge of this beautiful field, I felt like a real cowboy. I said to Lilly, I BET WE LOOK GREAT OUT HERE AND NO ONE IS HERE TO SEE!!!

By next weekend, all this color will be gone. I love that we got to be a part of it.

 The next day I was back on the trail. Bill was around preparing for the storm of biblical proportions expected on Tuesday. Lilly got the party started by tree hugging.

 She goes to the same trees for her love fests. First she rubs her head all over it. Then she bites it.

And then she tries to eat every yellow leaf within reach. She's like a very ridiculous giraffe.

 Before we headed out on the trail, I had Bill help me take Lilly's temperature. I had been wondering if she's moving so slow because of return of Lyme disease (which she has been treated for twice). I don't even know if Lyme causes a higher temperature. But why not check? I tried to get out of sticking the thermometer in Lilly's bum. I had never done it before and was worried. Bill made me do it. As it turns out, it is easy. When I took the thermometer out and read it, it said: HER TEMPERATURE IS FINE, SHE'S JUST LAZY.  I took this picture on the Short Trail because that weird bunch of whatever on that birch tree looked interesting enough to document. It could be a mushroom of some kind. I think it looks like hair that has been set in old fashioned rollers.

I named this post Dead Tree Trail because with all the leaves falling, I see dangerous dead trees more than ever. I noted again that we have been walking under a lot of scary looking dead trees without giving it much thought. This one we had to go around because now it is too low and unstable to slip under.

 There's my brumby standing next to another dead and rotting tree that looks like it could topple right on top of us if the wind was blowing just right.

Look at how cute Lilly is. She is just like a little kid making faces right when it is time to get photographed. She always puts her ears like this as if she is a silly old mule.

This is what she looks like right after she has been good enough to get a mid-trail carrot snack! Happy!

From far away on the road, this looked like a giant monkey in a tree staring at me. It gave my heart a little startle. But really, must I panic? There are no giant monkeys around here. It's just a tree! It's just a superscary tree!

I was at Bill's so late on Sunday that I was around for feeding time. It only looks like my brumby has no ears in this photo because she is trying t keep Sophie away from her hay.

In the end, it was Sophie who was in charge, not Lilly.

Much to Lilly's chagrin.

Parting Shot:

Here's what my husband's hair looks like when he stands in front of a bonfire.