Monday, August 16, 2010

Culture of Community

Apologies for being the worst blogger ever.  Its currently 95 degrees in Seattle, which doesn't mean much to most people in the middle of August, but here it warrants heat advisories, shuts down businesses and puts the horses into a constant sweat (much like me, they prefer a temperate 75-78 midday high..).

Miss P has been mostly enjoying the heat. Every time I show up, she's snoozing in the sun, lip drooping and ears flopped out to the side.  I'm glad to know she's as much of a sun goddess as I am, and also glad to see that the heat is keeping her mostly relaxed and lazy for her workouts.

Last week we did switch up her barn situation a little bit.  In anticipation of the weather getting worse, and because she's skinny, I moved her into a stall with a run (and away from her paddock with a shelter) as her "main home."  Most of the ponies in the stalls/runs only get a 1/2 day turnout, but since P is an absolute princess in most things (and because the BO is exceptionally accommodating), Pia is still getting full turnout, and will continue to do so as long as the weather cooperates.  But the thought of P outside full time in the rain/wind/sleet sounded like a recipe for weight loss, which we don't need anymore of (note to self, stand in rain... ).

I'm liking this move.  In theory she'll get as much outside time as she did, but now when it's rainy, instead of standing at her gate and looking toward the barn, she'll be in her cozy stall with friendly gossip gate and little run if she decides that she needs to go stand in the wet.

I mentioned before that the BO is off on a lovely vacation all week, which means that the inmates are running the asylum. :)  Often, I've found that a good litmus test for the quality of boarders and the "snark" factor is what happens when the alpha mare/BO steps away.  In this situation, one of the boarders is "barn sitting" all week, while a number of boarders divied up some of the feeding/wrapping/managing duties for last weekend.

I didn't really realize that was the situation, but when I showed up to lunge Miss P, I found a good 50% of the barn scampering around preparing mashes, washing buckets and chirping away.  Honestly, it was the closest thing to a Pony Club rally that I've seen in about 10 years.

"Lester didn't appear to drink any water last night, are we worried???"
"Nah, he's downed 1/3 a bucket already, he's fine..."
"Carie, P didn't finish her lunch hay, but she cleaned up her dinner"
"Has Riley had his bath yet?"
"Nope! Just finishing my mare, then I'll hose him down...."

uhhhhhh, what??? No snarky comments, no holier than thou attitudes, just happy horse ladies relishing their increased responsibility for a few days...

AWESOME.  Thrilled, couldn't be happier.  What a nice change from our previous barn with concerned parents, posturing trainers and kids who wouldn't know their horse was lame if it was missing a leg. 

How lovely to be surrounded by concerned owners asking for input on slight heat at the sight of an old tendon strain.  To be discussing supplement theories and swapping opinions.  To be in a barn where you know that even if the BO is gone, someone will tell you if your horse leaves behind some stems of her lunch or is just "being a doll."

I was going to write about how P is doing great, calm and chill during her free lunges, relaxed during her groundwork, and only objecting when she seems to get itchy under her saddle, but I just don't really care right now.  Right now I'm happy to let the mare enjoy the heat, let me enjoy the other boarders and appreciate where we are at. :)


  1. Sounds like you're in a great spot with your barn - you couldn't ask for more than that! Hope your heat eases up soon.

  2. A. Is that really your barn? It looks like a post card!!

    B. I would love the name/number of the bodywork person you use!!!! I can't seem to find a good one!

  3. Isn't it gorgeous!? I'm in love/maybe selling my condo and moving into a stall :)

    I had Laura Rising work on her. I don't have her number (the BO arranged it) BUT she runs Hilltop Stables in Woodinville ( I think they have a main number on their site. Awesome barn, almost moved there. She definitely knows her stuff and P was just a GEM after her adjustments..


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