Since I don't have an indoor, or a well drained outdoor arena, for that matter, my riding time seems to have dwindled to summer and fall. If I try to ride in my arena when it is at all muddy, it leaves ruts, so then it would be ruined for when it has dried up. But, soon that will change!
I stopped by a neighbor's house, and introduced myself. This particular neighbors happens to have a large, very nice, indoor arena. She said I am welcome to come over any time! She requested I get a Coggins, which I promptly did, and the vet just called today, and it is in the mail (negative of course). Although she is just a half mile away, if that, I would need to trailer my horse there, due to the busy roads. Up until a month ago, this would have been a problem, but, I just got my first horse trailer!
This trailer is a big deal for me! I have owned and trained and shown since I was 14 years old. That is 21 YEARS of horses and no horse trailer. Twenty-one years of hitching rides, paying to haul, and borrowing from friends. So, after much research as to what I wanted, I got a deal on Craigslist. Thank goodness for the Craigslist app! I had my keywords plugged in, and I called as soon as it posted on my phone. I love getting a deal. And, I contacted the manufacturers, and they congratulated me on my purchase and are sending me the owner's manual at no charge. Honda wouldn't do that when we purchased a used minivan. And, since I bought my trailer used, they are simply providing support for their product. They made no money on this deal. Thank you Exiss! It is not often, these days, that I run into customer service that deserves positive recognition.
So, back to my horse...Not only will I be able to get some more time in the saddle, but, this horse hasn't left my property since I purchased her. She has had several years of the same old routines, and I'm about to turn her world upside down. I suspect that there will be plenty of snorting and whinnying, but, we have to start somewhere. Who knows, depending on how cooky she is, I might not even be able to ride during our first outing. I wouldn't want to spend all evening there during our first visit, and wear out our welcome!
I'm just happy that I'll be getting her off the property. I remember how disappointing it is to work hard with a horse, and for that horse to act like it has had no training whatsoever at it's first show. Most horses don't have a level head the first time they leave home. It takes a while for them to become desensitized to all the sights and sounds that come with, not just horse shows, but new places in general. Even though I know the first couple shows I take Dottie to will probably just be opportunities to get her in the ring and adjusted to the sights and sounds, I can't help but hope that we'll actually put out a decent performance.
So, here's my plan. Fail to plan, and you've planned to fail, right? Take her to the neighbor's a few times. Sign up for a clinic at a local trainer's; not just another locale to adjust to, but a learning and networking opportunity as well! Maybe if it's not too wet, we'll even go with a friend (and her experienced trail horse) on our first EASY trail ride. I think versatility in a horse is important. And, there is another nice indoor that was built just down the road. Perhaps I should go introduce myself there, too? It never hurts to have too many friends!