So I have some new ink I’ve been meaning to show you guys!

 

The mountains on my hand are companied by the word “explore” in own handwriting. Yes I write messy but this has personal meaning to me. As a young man my father was a mountain climber, who climbed all over the western US and even Bolivia. At age (57? Sorry Dad – I can’t quite remember how old you are!) he no longer mountain climbs but still enjoys the occasional backpacking trip, Civil War reenacting with my siblings, and running. I don’t really participate in any of these myself, but I owe my sense of adventure and love of nature to him.

The phrase “give me wings, don’t be afraid if I fly” is actually a quote from a Michael Johnson song, and a tribute to Wings – the horse. Wings’ “show name” is actually “Give Me Wings” …although we never showed he was the first horse I ever really jumped and he gave me more confidence over fences than any horse I’ve had before or since.

Speaking of which…

On Friday this asshat won himself a long, hard ride when he thought it would be cool to make the hormonal pregnant lady chase him all over the 50 acre pasture.

I had originally intended to take Wings out for a short jaunt to the end of the road and back. But when he thought it would be cool to lead me on a wild goose chase around the open pasture – all plans went out the window. Case in point, do not piss off the pregnant lady!

As it was also the last day before the start of turkey season (or junior turkey season – whatevs – they carry guns so it’s all the same to me!) it was also to be our last trail ride in the area for a while.

  

We decided to hit up some trails we hadn’t visited in a while, and discovered that someone had been back there with a bulldozer widening trails and burning underbrush.

  

One thing to note – I do not have a saddle that currently fits Wings well. I have been riding him in an old dressage saddle lately because it appears to fit him best (my Stubben is far too wide and ends up putting a lot of pressure on his back/spine). However it still isn’t ideal and, additionally, causes me to post very upright which stresses my knees. 

I had some pretty awesome video clips from this ride, but apparently YouTube hates them. Seriously. I’ve been trying for days to upload them with no luck. 

So you’ll have to be content with this 15 sec video clip that made it to Instagram (my username btw is @prairiewindlady, if anyone cares to follow).

For the second time in a row I forgot to turn off my gps after dismounting, so I don’t know how far or fast we actually went, but I’m guessing it was around 5 miles in a little over an hour. 

Wings was being particularly spooky that day. I think he sees dead people. At any rate I stayed on a handful of his rabbit leaps but did get after him when he decided to be especially stupid about a certain metal pole sticking up out of the ground (after just passing 3 just like it!) Riding alone most of my life has taught me one thing and that is how to stay on! If you fall and loose your horse in the middle of nowhere (this did happen to me once) you are screwed! So I learned to stay on and learned not to tolerate the bullshit. It’s one thing if your horse is truly startled by something but I also believe that some horses use spooking as an excuse to turn around – to get out of working. And that is sort of what Wings was trying that day. To be fair, he hasn’t been asked to really work in YEARS (like almost 10 years if I think about it) so my suddenly getting him out 2 days a week is just slightly mind boggling for him.

  

Such pretty trails!
    
A tad creepy though when riding alone!
 
   

That was Friday. On Saturday I worked and overnight was hit when full blown pregnancy symptoms – aka “morning sickness”. Since I am technically on “vacation” until Thursday I took it easy and slept or laid around most of the day (which felt so wrong, being that I’m an extremely active person!)

But this morning more than made up for it. Joe has been talking about wanting to ride again, so we headed up to the pasture and retrieved the boys. 

Riding all by hisself! Yeah he’s hunched over a little bit but he really did a good job of trying to sit up straight when I pointed it out to him.
   
They both did SO good y’all!!

 
Yeah his stirrups are too long but I had messed with them twice already and opted not to do it again. But look at that posture! He’s a natural I think!
    

Justice was a freaking rockstar! This is the horse who was rehomed because he was too much for a seasoned endurance rider y’all, and yet here he is – a mere year later – toting around a complete beginner! Words can’t describe how proud I am of him! 

   

It was only Joe’s 3rd ride ever and while I do prefer beginners to wear a helmet, I don’t have one his size and I know that even if I did, he would be far too stubborn to wear it.

At any rate he rode for about 10 minutes, which is the longest to date. We stuck to up and down the driveway this time, but next time we will probably try going along the fence line and eventually move back to the trails behind the pasture. Baby steps!  

As for Wings, I groomed him and let him stand tied while Joe rode, before giving him a little grain and putting him away (after his recent ecapades I wanted him to realize that I’m not always going to work him to death whenever he sees me lol). 

Upon my request Joe snagged this photo of us, with Wings’ tribute ink showing šŸ˜‰
 

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