Monday, March 16, 2009

Spring is here??

I don't like the cold. I frequently complain, whine, and pout when temperatures fall below 40. I am also a fair weather rider and my horses pretty much get the winter off. Last week we had sub zero temps - today is nearing 60.
The warm weather brings unwanted side effects:

1.) The "Field Road of Doom". The field road has now turned to cankle (calf-ankle)deep mud in places and I now have to walk out to the barn. Luckily I was able to get Scotty's alfalfa, grain, and shavings back there on Saturday, nearly getting my truck stuck on the way out. Luckily there is a small subdivision on the east side of the barn where I can park and trek in. Muck boots are now my primary footwear as even the pastures are soggy now.

2.) Horse hair in the mouth. Two things I cannot stand in my mouth are hair of any variety (especially when found in my food) and tiny fish bones. I nearly throw up in my mouth just thinking about it and actually start gagging and dry heaving when they wind up in there. Shedding ponies result in hair in the mouth no matter how hard you try to avoid it. I'm thinking of investing in some of those surgical masks. As far as fish bones are concerned - I thought I learned my lesson - the fish I like are the Filet O Fishies at McDonalds. Last Friday I had a walleye sandwich at a restaurant. Supposedly boneless, you can imagine my surprise when I bit into a tiny little bone. Luckily I was able to keep my composure and unnoticeably spit my mouthful into a napkin. I did not finish my sandwich. I hate that.

3.) Flooded Barn. The runoff of melting ice usually turns three of the four stalls in our barn into swimming pools. Saturday Scotty's stall began to flood. I frantically chipped at the ice around the back door creating a drainage channel into the pasture instead of into the barn. So far so good. Three of Four stalls have been saved.

4.) Spring Fever! Fresh horses usually mean unscheduled dismounts. I've been lucky with the past few years *knock on wood*... but I just realized I have a 4 year old Thoroughbred who is off the track, feeling healthy, and has recently shown me how much pent up energy he has by racing around in the pasture and throwing bucks that would make rodeo horses jealous.

5.) Stuck trailer. Refer to #1 reason. My trailer is parked at the barn and removing it from the barn requires the quarter mile journey down the "Field Road of Doom". Currently it is not driveable, barely walkable and resembles that of quicksand. It is frustrating that I have opportunities to trailer my horses different places to ride now that the weather is warmer - but can't get them out at this point. Poor planning on my part - I should know better, however my trailer doubles as Scotty's alfalfa hay storage in the winter. I'd have no place to put his hay. I'll just have to wait for it to dry out in a couple of weeks.

So there you have it... my top 5 undesirable side effects of spring and warmer weather.

Scotty is well - yesterday we played "tag" in the pasture. He'd follow me for a treat and I'd duck behind the round bale feeder and pop out the other side. He'd paw and snake his head and trot after me. We both found this quite amusing for about 5 minutes, then he got bored and walked away. Scotty also enjoyed playing in the water tank. I caught him submerging his face and splashing around. I just love his little quirks. Today the farrier (bless his heart) is hiking down the Field Road of Doom to trim. I love spring!


TBDancer said...

Do not laugh at the surgical mask thing--I have several and wear them when bodyclipping. I also wear them if I'm stripping a stall and there is a lot of dust.

Huey is bodyclipped, but we had "clipper issues," and he now looks like a cactus--the winter hairs not clipped have grown out and he's shedding the "bits," too. Ryan is not body clipped. His hairs are long as well, and he's starting to let go of them.

Too bad we can't sell the hair and make money, huh?

Scotty looks GREAT in that top picture. What a wonderful job you are doing with him. And the fact that he got bored with the treat game means he's getting enough to eat and is a happy boy. If he were still starving or "in need of treats," he would play the game with you all day long.

Congratulations on a job well done, Annie!

Caprice- said...

Scotty looks so good. It is so fun to "play" with our horses. I love to play with my little Dani.
Is it possible to put rock on your driveway? I'm blessed with a lot of rock in the drive and barn area where I live so I don't get any mud except in the pasture. That's pretty bad in the winter and I whine about it. I shouldn't whine though because I only had a few weeks of muck boots and you have many more weeks left. The bad thing about rock is you may get rock bruises on unshod feet. I keep my horses off it.
Happy First Day of Spring (or not?)!

TBDancer said...

It is March 22 as I write this little note--First day of spring was Friday and I am sitting here in a hoody and turtleneck, fuzzy socks on my feet, the wind blowing a gale outside and THREE (count 'em, THREE!) weather advisories for our area until 6 a.m. tomorrow morning.

The weather page has hired someone with a sense of humor. One of the advisories begins, "A brief return of winter today."

Oh, hardy har har.

Anyway, my POINT is, I was sitting here in the family room surfing around on the computer and I happened to click on some of your posts for 2008--and what a difference in dear Scotty, both in his weight and his demeanor. He always had a good "eye," but he's obviously VERY happy now that his hip bones are nicely padded and he is "home."

Phenomenal, gal! Good work!