To ride dressage is to dance with your horse, equal partners in the delicate and sometimes difficult work of creating harmony and beauty.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Guess who!

Do you recognize this nose?
Hint: It's not Lance
Last night when I went to a church ladies' Christmas party, I slipped out to the frigid barn for a tryst with an old flame.
Hey, Muscle Man! How have you been?

The party was held where Russell lives now. I haven't seen my old dancing partner since he left nearly two years ago – shortly after making contact with his now-owner at the same place and occasion as last night. Last year I avoided visiting Russell for fear it would be too painful, not having my own horse to fill his stall. Now that I have Lance, I could do it. How thankful I am that Russell has this perfect retirement home at which to live out his days, enjoying turn-out on pasture every day, and the (very) occasional short trail ride! I gave him a couple apple slices and a good rub before bidding him good-bye.

There was no beach ride for me or this guy today, and believe me, he needed it!*

I could have gotten down our hill okay, but wasn't sure what Highway 18 over the coast range would be like. Since the temperatures weren't supposed to be significantly warmer at the beach, Kate and I decided to postpone our date for more comfortable weather  – maybe next Sunday.

*In the comments on my last post, a couple of you suggested I just turn Lance out on pasture to deal with his pent-up energy. Sorry; that's way too risky for my blood – or should I say my heart. Orthopedic trauma surgeons don't let their kids on trampolines because they see the kinds of injuries that can occur. As the wife of a equine veterinarian specializing in lameness, I've seen what horses can do to themselves in turn-out – especially on hard, frozen, slick, sloped ground. On top of that, I spent three or four years dealing with Russell's round-robin lamenesses from assorted suspensory injuries in all four legs, and then watched him run by a tree, catching his hip with a glancing blow that fractured his left tuber coxae. Turn out old Breezy? I'm sure she'd be fine. Turn out young, fit, frustrated Lance? With my luck he'd break a leg.


Theresa said...

Well, heres hoping for much warmer temps this week so you both can get out together! :)

Alanna M said...

I can definitely understand the turn out thing. My horses have not been out on the pasture since this started either. Emi would LOVE to go run (hence the photos with the Purina bag to distract her).'s totally not worth having one of them slip and get hurt.

Piccolopony said...

I was huge on "just turn them out and let them deal" until my filly slipped on ice and broke her hip. She was always out and didn't even have a stall so should have been pretty aware of her footing and didn't have much pent up energy but it sill happened. Now I'm WAY more careful.

Laura said...

It's been 2 years??? Man, how time flies! Good to see his happy face! I was in the "turn him out camp" but I can totally understand your point of view. If he were out all the time, it would be different, but, since he's not, it's probably not really safe. And, better safe than sorry!!