If anyone needs any more proof that I am obsessed, this is it. Temp in the barn was 32, but with the wind blowing directly from the north, the wind chill was probably in the teens. But, the last time I was able to ride was Monday, and if I don’t ride for a few days, I start getting the delirium tremens. And the weather is looking even worse tomorrow for riding. So, I put on my ‘big girl panties’ (or in this case, my big girl long johns) and suited up to brave the elements.
I was wearing so many clothes I could barely move, and could have been the stunt double for the Michelin man.
Yep, that’s what I looked like with Underarmor shirt, fleece shirt, a down coat, fleece scarf, silk long johns, fleece breeches with full deerskin seat, sock liners, polarfleece socks and thinsulate gloves. Oh, and a fleece headband under my helmet. Just saddling Faeryn was, um, challenging, since not only did I look like Mr. Man, I was about as graceful too.
I felt really bad ripping that blanket off of Faeryn. For a brief moment I considered using a rump rug I’ve had for years and never used. I even got it out and tossed it on her, but then the image of the rug flapping in the north wind behind her popped into my brain and I decided that was a Bad Idea.
Suffice it to say my range of motion was sufficiently impaired that getting on was also a challenge. Being vertically challenged, I don’t even _think_ about tryiing to get on any of my horses from the ground. I have a nice mounting block – but even with that, it’s still not easy for someone with a 28-inch inseam.
Once I got on her, I thought, “Well, this isn’t so bad.” Well, that was before we headed due north! When that wind hit my face I literally could not breathe for a second! Fling followed me out in the field, and suddenly a small flock of crows took off en mass and Fling exploded, bucking and whirling and then galloping off. Faeryn really wanted to follow and almost gave me whiplash spinning around, but I got her stopped, and to her credit, she stood, trembling as Fling continued her best imitation of prize bucking stock – really wanting to take off and join her, but using every ounce of her self control to obey me. Faeryn is young, and she is the ‘hottest’ of my three horses. “Hot” is not a bad thing for a show horse – you want that stored energy to give you brilliance in the show ring – but it’s not always the best thing for riding in a ten acre field on a cold windy day! LOL! We stood for a moment, and I could feel her heart pounding, but still, she obeyed me. When I asked her to walk on, away from Fling (and her continuing antics!) she moved forward reluctantly, but instead of a flat-footed walk, she boinged up and down like she had springs on her feet! But within a few strides, she settled in, and I patted her and praised her lavishly, gave her some peppermint (still working on the 20 boxes of candy canes I got for .20 a box at Wal-Mart!) and thought to myself, “Yes, your momma would be proud.”
Then we turned the corner into the north wind again. I think my face got nicely exfoliated! lol! Actually, it was pretty exhilarating, and the only thing actually cold once we got working were my fingers. I found a dry patch of ground and I had a really nice ride on her. A few neighbors drove by and I could almost hear them thinking “There’s that crazy horse lady.” Yep. I am the crazy horse lady. 😉
Right now, Faeryn has had her dinner, she’s snugged back into her blanket and she and her siblings are munching hay, tucked into their stalls for the night. For a horseperson, that sound – contented hay munching – is one of the sweetest symphonies ever written.
All is right with the world.