Monday, August 27, 2018

Unexpected Show: High Five and Hugs

I am still battling the insurance company and it stressed me out completely before the show on Saturday. Mentally I was exhausted. We seriously considered not going to the show, but that would mean losing $120 in show fees. Plus I did not want to lose more this year.
I skipped Ember's adventure because I still have not taken the videos off Mom's phone. It is coming though.

We of course needed a trailer and the one we borrowed for Ember would not work. Luckily my farrier offered his. It is for sale and we hoped it would be a possible replacement. That is not going to be the case since our horses seem to think the butt guards are for going under. Plus I don't think we can handle not having a dressing room. Our Gore spoiled us.

The show was in the evening and gave us time to give them a quick scrub. Rosemary was up first with her Training level debut. I was slightly worried about it due to the lack of riding caused by the dang rain. She warmed up wonderfully and I thought my timing was good. Except we ended up having a few more riders to go.

I lost some of her by test time. Overall it was a solid test scoring between 6.5 and 7 with one 8. She got a bit strung out during her right lead. Fitness will help her with that if Mother Nature decides to let us ride. I worried about if she would have enough left for Mom's tests.

Bless her, she was super for Mom and gave her both leads. It was great for Mom's confidence. Her scores were, T1 68.26% (3rd), Intro-B 65.63% (4th) and Intro-C 67% (1st).

Roscoe had the full set of Training tests to do. He was full of it, even kicked at the mounting block. I did very little warm up, mostly because there were some inconsiderate people in the ring. I did not want to cause and issue. I basically used my T1 to warm up. He actually was not too bad. We still have our issue of getting off my inside leg going to the left, but it was not at the same level as previous shows. As I approached the judge, I was hesitant. She asked how I felt about it. I told her it was warm up and she gave me a high five and said it was great. Then she shocked me by telling me she scored his right lead canter with a 9. My jaw dropped.

I only had one test before T2. It really was a rinse and repeat. Left was bracing and needed better bend. Then we cantered right and it felt amazing. It was more apparent after her comments. She again came to talk and said she wavered about what score to give me. She said he was straight, which has been a challenge previously. In the end she said we got a 10! She gave me a hug and I almost cried.

On the way to a 10

A couple more rides and we were back for T3. This test I knew would be tough. Roscoe was a bit tired and the canter corners especially to the left caused us issues. I have only ridden the test in a small arena so the large ring was tough. This time Roscoe actually got a 10 for his right lead transition. A total win since that is normally a trouble spot. No where near fabulous, lots to work on. He was amazing for me in my brain fried condition. I am still in shock. This judge has seen us twice before and her reaction helped me realize his training is on the right track.

And if the day had not been surprising enough, as I finished my last test another rider said I inspired her and she wanted to be like me. Peggy mentioned people commenting on my hands. Seriously it felt like a I was in La La Land.

We left before the results and they finally posted today. Roscoe had a clean blue sweep; T1 69.78%, T2 73.27% and T3 73.41% (high score of the day training level & up). This was an unexpected show, but exactly what we needed.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018


Thank you all for keeping DaVinci and us in your thoughts. We needed them. As we expected DaVinci did colic Thursday night, but since the vets took my mom seriously they were on top of it. Friday we waited anxiously to hear whether or not he would need surgery. His fracture was not repairable, so it would depend on the fragments and his eye.
Added to the wait we had the worry of having the ability to pick him up. Larry had a trip to TN scheduled, but their Acura ended up having a bad break. So Peggy said he needed the truck, which we need to pull the gooseneck. Well we ended up sending our truck with Larry but we had to clean it before because it somehow got moldy.
When we finally got the call to come get DaVinci, traffic was a mess. Dad and I were originally going to go to empty the trailer, but we could not make it. We went to the vets and found out the trailer was traveling like crap. Not great considering it was 1.5hrs away from the barn.
DaVinci was ready to leave and the vet was okay letting him go for his health. The walk from his stall to the trailer was reminiscent of his walk when he arrived to us 12yrs ago: I was the one being walked. Bless him, he walked right on.

hospital tag

Getting belly scratches

Peggy and I started bringing him home. It was hellish. The truck shook so bad. If anyone remembers the Indiana trip where we had a trailer tire blow, this was worse. We made it to within 10 miles of the barn before Peggy felt something give. We both jumped to look at the trailer and found nothing. We turned around and saw the truck tire was flat. We did not think that would be an issue since my Dad was following.

Nope our bad luck continued. It took over an hour to get the spare out of the under carriage. Then it was difficult to get the jack placed and up. Finally we could get the lugs off. And the tire decided it was not coming off. The trailer jack saved the day by lifting the tire enough to let it release. By this time the darkness was coming. I worried about DaVinci who was quiet on the trailer, but had not pooped. My farrier kept messaging me and asking if we were moving yet. He was all set to come and help if he could. Finally by 830 we were on our way.

We pulled up to the barn and was greeted by Comrade on the front lawn. Oh shit! I jumped out to see if his merry men were out too. Some good luck, they were still in the field. Comrade had pulled the eye screw out of the board and walked through the people gate. He knew he was wrong because he booked it back into the barn and to his gate. Peggy set to securing a new eye screw and I went to get DaVinci.

He trotted around the little turn out, taking small nibbles of hay. His face was a bit puffy and sore. That day and all weekend he wanted nothing to do with wet food. I think they tried to hide meds in it at the vets. We had to put him with Dottie because he would not settle alone. I was kinda freaked on Saturday because his swelling felt crinkly. He looked little a wrinkled old man. The vet said he has air under his skin due to the fracture involving the sinus.

We all have made it to his follow up today and he is looking better. Our vet was pleased with his progress. His face is looking more normal too. He has to finish the antibiotics and then we watch.

As for the trailer, it is totaled. I cried when I saw it. Now I am beginning the fight for its value.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Trailer vs Mack Truck ... Nightmare

Thank you all for your thoughts on my last post. Unfortunately, things got worse today. DaVinci's eye was acting up again. He rubbed it like crazy Wednesday. Our vet could not come due to a family death and no other vet was available to come. So today they said to bring him to the hospital which is almost 2hrs away.

The time of the appointment meant that I could not make it. Mom and my sister loaded him up and headed out. The area was one we are not familiar with. So when I got a text from my Mom saying she killed my trailer I was worried. It turned out that what Mom thought was a four way stop was only a two way stop. When she pulled through the intersection the Mack Truck hit the passenger side of the horse trailer just behind the escape door. Mom said the stabilizer system helped keep the trailer upright.

Since they were only a couple miles from the vet's, the vet came and picked up DaVinci. Our poor boy who stresses at the vet was almost unmanageable. Mom was stuck with the trailer until the tow came. When they made it to see him, the vet said he fractured his eye socket.
DaVinci's guardian angel was working overtime

Considering the center divider curled around him, I think he did it in the trailer. He was fighting even with sedation. They did manage to xray him and the break is not fixable and there are fragments. They are managing his pain, giving him antibiotics and waiting for an opthemology consult. We had to leave him there tonight, which worries us deeply. Mom stressed to them that he is a worrier. They gave him ulcerguard and a small turn out. Hopefully he will settle tonight and not colic.

Please keep him in your thoughts! I will take a one-eyed DaVinci over losing him. Now I have to deal with the trailer claim and hope I get enough to buy another soon. With two shows and a clinic coming up this month, we are lucky Peggy has a trailer.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Summer Depression

Did you miss me? I have had a bit of summer depression from too much negative. I took a break to regroup and remember this will pass. It is tough when we did so much last year to have rain and money slow this year down. My car is very old and has a ton of mileage. Sadly this year it has needed $3000 worth of work. Hopefully it can last a little longer while I pay off the horse trailer. While I was stressing about the cost of car repairs, I still wanted to push forward with some show plans.

I prepaid again for tests and hoped to have Lauren ride Roscoe at another show. I wanted it not because I cannot ride him, but because she is sharper and cleaner and can maybe work on some of the stuff he pulls at shows. I expected a simple yes or no she could ride and a reasonable number of rides beforehand. Well, she pulled the "you should be doing lessons rather than showing" card. Yes I would love more lessons, but even at $45 that is hard to do more than once a month. These shows run me $40 if I ride two tests.

Then she said that "you should show a level below you train." Agree, if you are doing rated shows. These are schooling shows, emphasis on SCHOOLING. Roscoe's scores have been solid and I have been happy with his progress. She definitely made me feel like we are not improving.
She said that for her to ride, she would have to have 10 rides the two weeks before the show. Ugh... I don't even ride that much before a show.
Finally she said that without those rides she would not ride any better than I would. Seriously I literally told her not to compare me with her other clients. I am the only one who can say how well the ride did or did not go. I am at an age now that can appreciate the small wins. I told her if  her reputation could not handle not winning at a small schooling show, then I would put Roscoe's training aside for her.

So sadly I won't be able to have her show Roscoe. I have lost a little faith in her training me too. I really need someone who can work on long term growth. Sprieser has another trainer I may try to get more rides with. Lauren may be relegated to training rides.
The only one riding right now

To top off dealing with that situation, the rain and humidity have killed riding and shows. My prepaid tests are too many to be used for the last two shows. It will be a marathon couple of shows. When the July show was canceled, the organizer offered to roll over the fees to a working equitation play day or a dressage clinic. I asked to do that and she worked it so I would use four prepaid dressage tests and only have to pay $5.  I am looking forward to going.
Then later this month Ember is going to the jump chute clinic Roscoe went to earlier this year. Time for the baby to see what he thinks of jumping. The clinician will actually have to work with him. Now I need to watch that braiding a long mane into single braids again. Mom does not want him looking scruffy.
Oh and Draco goes to his inspection this month. He is at that funny shedding phase, but man he looks good. His sister won big at a Welsh show in Canada.