Jennifer

Somehow I never really considered the enormity of this horse ownership thing. I’ve been so romantic about the whole adventure. Fortunately, the reality is even better than the imagining. Bet you didn’t see THAT coming!

The key is to keep my focus just a little out into the future while the rest of my mind deals with the here and now. A little out in the future, Princess Fluffy Feet (like Donnell said, I gotta name that horse) and I are bravely clomping over bridges and across streams, sunlight filtered through evergreen boughs and chipmunks yelling out an early warning of their busywork. Today though, I have no trailer. So that’s the here and now.

A little out in the future, I hop on mighty Ranger bareback, with just a rope halter and lead rope, and off we go from the play field up to Donnell and David’s soon-to-be hitching post. Ranger waits impatiently – he’s always impatient in my mind – while I beg an Arizona Ice Tea at the front door. I scramble back up on His Boldness, and we meander the short distance to the arena for a roll in the footing. Here and now though, Ranger isn’t entirely sure of me, and I’m not 100% sure of him either. We’re thinking we might rely on stirrups in the beginning. I better get a saddle.

It’s just horse tack – how hard can it be? A saddle. Right. So…bareback pad, endurance, australian, western, dressage, jumper, trail, roping, barrel, all-purpose, saddle seat, equitation, treeless, cordura, ortho-flex? Tree size? Angle of bars? Gullet width? Cantle height? Seat size? Back cinch? Other rigging? OK, just a few questions to answer before I get a saddle. But a bridle, how hard can that be? Figure out the head stall size, and then, wait, do I want a nose band? Brow band? Should it go around one ear or behind both? Right, sure sure, so just a couple issues to resolve there. And a bit probably. It’s just a bit – how hard can that be? Uh…Curb? Snaffle? Pelham? Single-joint? Double-joint? Twist? Copper? Iron? Rubber? French Link? D-ring? Eggbutt? Full cheek? Myler? Ack! Maybe bitless. A bridle of any kind isn’t going to be much use without reins, so better get some of those. They’re just reins (split, braided, leather, rope…) how hard can that be? And then there’s a halter, lead rope, grooming tools, fly mask, rain sheet, mane detangler spray, tail comb, clippers, swat, thrush preventer, snooglethrop, quantrap, and a froleig for over the back of the thingamajiggy. So, you know, just get those things and you’re ready to go!

If you can’t imagine yourself working on made up drill team patterns at a canter, then you can’t make yourself do the research to answer the questions that keep you from the stuff that lets you and your horse work on made up drill team patterns at a canter. So I keep my focus a little into the future while the rest of my mind deals with the here and now.

In the very near future, I have a bunch of fellow Urban Herd members to discuss all this with, but only if I deal with the here and now. So much happening, so little evidence of it. But that’s today. A little in the future…