I started a new job, one with real hours, and now--like most humans--have to squeeze in horse time after the work day is done. This would be fine if Calabar and Lena were still my only horses and technically they are. But the other two in my care--Cash and Dixie--both needed a bit of extra attention this last month.
Cash had a bad month working an abscess out of a hind foot, requiring lots of duct tape, icthamol and hand walking to encourage the blob of pain in his hoof to manifest itself. It would get better, then worse, then better again until FINALLY it oozed its nasty way out of his coronary band. Gross, but a huge relief and the boy is now happily chasing me up and down his fence line when I get to the barn. Not to mention allowing me to perch upon him bareback though he thinks I may be a little on the weird side.
|I AM on good behavior!|
But back to Calabar, who says it's about time to return my attention to his beautiful, handsome, patient, long-suffering brown self.
|My tiny human, says the bossy brown horse|
No. You cannot run over me on the way into the arena. Stop pouting, I barely hit your chin with the clip, you big baby. Yes, I do mean it. Stop acting like a turd. Yes, of course I still love you. No, I am not your scratching post. We are indeed going to ride at feeding time. Just like we used to before I got distracted. Yes, it's dark outside the arena. It's winter, remember? I'm pretty sure there are no mountain lions out there this very second.
But then there is the moment where we connect--where he does what I want or I do what he wants and convince him it's my idea. The other day it was a forward seat, hands on either side of his withers, just letting him canter and staying with him. It was a fast canter, just in the round pen, but I found myself breathing in time with him as he huffed out in the race-rhythm and when I went with him and didn't try to hold him, he actually relaxed. We were balanced, we were together, he was happy and forward and all my horse to ride.
He is also an incredible puppy babysitter as it turns out.
|My puppy, says Uncle Calabar|