California trip #4

Vanna, the wonderful.
Vanna, the wonderful.

We made it home!  I did NOT intend for my blog to be catatonic for this long, I apologize deeply. My creative juices are needing an outlet, and here it goes!

We were driving a mere 30 miles from home when I realized that I had forgotten my laptop in the furious packing for California. Total DOH! moment. Emotionally, it was nearly impossible to turn around and go home and get it. Once you have packed and left the driveway, you are officially on an adventure. And to turn around would be admitting a crushing defeat, Oh, and it would put us in morning traffic leaving Seattle and Tacoma. That would be a great, big drag. So, onwards we went, and I told Letty and Morgan that it should be fine because I have the ipad. From my blog silence, you can guess how much I enjoyed using that device for typing.

We drove to Loomis and stayed at Jordan’s barn. And as usual, we were highly cared for Chris and Kevin McNabb of Twin Palms Eventing. Easter dinner was awesome and I cant imagine staying anywhere else in the world. Down the street at Jordan’s barn our horses enjoyed a seriously happy day off. They rolled, slept and grazed and we did the same.

After taking Easter Sunday off, we hit the road on Monday morning and braved the dusty central valley. You might need this small bit of trivia one day, but one of the reasons I did not make it through my entire Graduate school at UC Davis was because my body downright rejects the Central Valley dust. And apparently things have not changed much for me since then. I started to feel my allergies come on, and then we hit Los Angeles and I was in full histone distress. Two weeks later, I found myself in the doctor’s office with bronchitis, sinusitis and vocal-cord-itis.  It was a grim reminder that I am definitly not built to live in California.

A brief introduction to our group:

Me: 5’6″ although I always thought I was taller.

Moxee: The worlds best Pithoundheeler

Archie: my homebred 7 year old gelding, out of A La Mode by Ariadus. Going Training level

Lee: formerly know as Suzy Elliot’s ride, and now mine (insert spooky villan laugh)

IMG_9527Morgan:  18 year old, adventurous Alaskan out experiencing the vastness of the world in the lower 49

Letty: just-turned-21 assistant trainer at Polestar who will be famous one day

Cricket: unraced TB mare who was rescued by Brittney Keller and is being trained by Morgan. She had no prior experience to eventing and was pretty green when we got her in September.

Taco: wise old soul teaching Letty the upper level ropes.

Cricket? Are you sunburned?
Cricket? Are you sunburned?

We had great stalls at Galway Downs in the permanent area. Our horses got to enjoy the 12 x 12 stalls and cool shade of the cinder blocks. But the stroke of luck, was our barn neighbor who operates her training out of Galway, let us use one of her turnout paddocks.  Our horses could get at least a few hours every day outside, and it allowed Lee to not turn into a fire breathing dragon and Cricket stayed sane while she did not compete that weekend. At least she got to be outside and get exhausted by the 85 degree sun.

Personally, my weekend results look much better than the &^$Tsh)W that I experienced. I learned that my horses are not living enough of an active urban lifestyle here at Polestar during the winter to tolerate Disneyland on their first trip away from home. They were totally out of their minds. Have you seen that sign in the doctor’s office?  Well, I was riding TWO horses on espresso with a litter of puppies yapping at their heels.  I eventually had to get much better at my cowboy skills real quick-like in order to survive the weekend. Lee is an extremely athletic horse, and when he uses it for evil, it can be a little scary. Archie was just freaked out by the warmup arenas, he could not tolerate horses doing their own thing in the same arena as him. He was like a freshman who feared the upperclassmen around every corner. He knew he was going to find himself with a wedgie any minute now and he was petrified.  Somehow, we pulled off a 4th and 8th place for Lee and Archie respectively.

Archie, doing dressage.
Archie, doing dressage.

Letty did an amazing job with Taco and was 4th in the Senior Training division. Her goals were to get two solid Training rounds done down there so that she felt more prepared for Preliminary this spring in Area VII. She did just that. I couldnt be happier with either her or Taco, they were a team that was fun to watch.
Morgan was the solid groom all weekend long, an invaluable service to me. She made my ride times work out perfectly well, despite the fact that they were too close for comfort.

Next blog: Twin Rivers event


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