Monday, August 29, 2016

The Adventure Never Ends

What a weekend...where to begin?

I'll start with the big question, how did it feel to be back at IMJ?  Well, I was glad to be distracted and busy volunteering. I'm sure it would have been different if I had been riding the trails, but it wasn't as emotionally hard as I thought it would be to just BE at the ride. I had Traveler with me at all times, wearing his horsehair bracelet, and in my trailer at night was my pillow to remember my boys.

From the beginning....
loaded up!
My goal was to be on the road about 9, and I almost made that.  I got to the barn about 8, took about 45 min to finish up my packing and set up. Then went to grab Prophecy.  I gave him a few turns around the round pen, still looked a little off going CCW to me.  We then had a small discussion about the trailer until he realized "Yes, I am saying get on now!"  While checking one last thing I saw he pooped...Ok, small detour to the vet as he was due for a fecal count recheck.  He was not thrilled at the stop there and started pawing/kicking he escape door.   We officially left about 920.

After that it was pretty much smooth sailing and we arrived around 1pm to Ivanhoe. He unloaded a little unruly, yelled a bit while I got his pen set up, but within 30min was quiet and content to look around.

I took him for a mock vet-in, at which he was unphased.  We trotted out, the vet saying if he was truly off we'd see it as the ground was very hard in there. Nope, he's fine. Faking it? Or circles too tight in the round pen??  We'll try lunging in the regular arena tonight to warm up.

Amy & Ricky vetting in together after their 30
My Rockin' Mountain Monstas teammates that came to the ride were all riding Friday, Ricky in LD (with his wife Amy), Jaime & Kristen in the 50.  Jaime's friend Susan came along to crew. She has gotten a little bit of the endurance bug riding Jaime's horse Faygo :) I got done with checking in and getting into my volunteer shirt to hear Ricky & Amy were back. I helped cool off, sponge and scrape their horses. Then got to watch as they did their final vet in together. I think it is so awesome they got to ride together this time!  We took the horses down to the river and I grabbed a few fun shots for them.

I spent the rest of the afternoon/evening being a scribe at the final vet check for our wonderful vets. After dinner & the awards Prophecy was a bit wound up with all the horses being walked around and head lamps galore. So I grabbed my head lamp and we went walking.  That seemed to settle him a bit and we turned in for the night around 10.  I tried to use my rope slow feed hay net, but he would throw it into my trailer! argh...about 5 min of that and I went out to dump it.
I still didn't get much sleep...he talked a lot!  Either calling out to other horses, or soft nickers to them - even to ME; He'd come up to my window to chat :)

The day began with the usual commotion of riders getting ready and leaving for their rides, Prophecy handled it pretty well. We went walking a bunch, and then hung out while the rest of the team packed up to head out. He held it together pretty well for that, and even the neighbors heading out to trail ride. I had a few people around who knew that I'd be up at the vet check area just in case I was needed, but he was a good sport :)
He did have one "time out" where I tied him to the trailer for being very antsy and pushy against the panels as Jaime was packing up her horse, but after about 15min of that he settled back down.

I did taken him down to play in the river some, to which he put his nose under the water and threw it at me several times...I think he liked the nice cool spot, and did pretty well with the kids killer whale float that was around!

I spent my day from lunch to dinner as a scribe again. I love being a scribe.  Ok, I got my workout in too over the weekend trotting out horses for people who needed it, but the best is the vets always have something interesting and never hold back from sharing knowledge. Much discussion was had about "thumps" and grading of lameness. There was really only one group of riders that came through that weren't exactly 'nice' to the vets or volunteers at the final check.

We visited with the ride farrier to check on his feet, and found out what size Easy Boots I need to find for his fronts.

I moved his pen to get at some grass towards the back of my trailer, and it turns out I slept well Saturday night!  He talked a few times, but not much.

I was up about 615 and decided I wasn't really hungry to stay for breakfast. I packed up, we walked, then decided to hit the road about 8. He loaded very easily with no discussion this time. I think he was ready to go home too.

Everything in 3's right?  Then I'm done!

When I arrived Friday I found my cap to the roof vent in my sleeping area G O N E! Umm? It was there and down when I left the barn...sigh.  Caught wind of some impeding rain in the forecast and enlisted some help duct taping plastic over it.  It didn't end up raining till after dinner, but I was covered! So that is Trailer issue #1.

Trailer issue #2 - I had just scanned my side view mirrors and all looked good.  Not a minute or so later, I notice the panels on my drivers side not strapped how they should be!  Fortunately I was close to an exit and crept my off and over to a good safe spot to get out and fix.  Precariously close to having it all come down and shatter :(  I found the weld had broken on the brackets that were made for it. So I moved those 4 into the trailer in my 2nd stall and hit the road again. I hate blocking the horse in, but I was kind of out options.

Shortly after, seriously like 20 min or so after, came Trailer issue #3!  We were moving through a fairly slow area due to upcoming road work and something felt wrong.  I knew I had a tire issue somewhere, so again I managed to get off the interstate - oddly enough the same exit I had stopped for gas on the way down - and headed over to the Food Lion parking lot to inspect.  It took me a few minutes to find it, but the driver's side back tire had started to de-tread.
I got on the phone with USRider and parked us with sun on the passenger side.  They were very helpful, found one company that said it would be a few hours and I said I couldn't do that with a horse on the trailer and he obliged and kept looking for me.  Small town, Salem VA, and not many places open on a Sunday morning!  They found someone who got to me much quicker.  I had already pulled off my spare under the nose and was debating starting to change it myself with my Tire-Aid, but once I got the text he would be there in 15 min I just waited :P  Prophecy was OK for about the first 45min of the ordeal, then the pawing and kicking at escape door began. All in all I think I lost 1.5hrs, but it wasn't blazing hot yet and I was able to keep him calm with some treats.  Time to get some quotes on new tires I guess...these were on it when I bought the trailer last year and had been checked then, and again this March.

Definitely glad I did not drive home Saturday night as I had been debating... Not issues I would have wanted to deal with in the dark!!

We arrived back to the barn about 1pm, without further issue (thankfully!).  Prophecy was much better about unloading this time, letting me get the panels out from the second stall and then backing nicely off. I turned him out and he promptly went strolling to find a good rolling spot.

Oh, and I took him to the scale at the ride... 1015 lbs!  This week we start on our new riding schedule; Watch out Prophecy - time to work!  I have my sights set on the LD at Fort Valley, but only if he's ready. If not, we just go volunteer again and wait till next year.

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