Some Days Are Not Meant For Working

I didn’t feel like riding today. Or rather, I didn’t feel like working at riding.

I drove the 40 minutes to the barn while Friday-crazed, just off work, rushing home people tried to kill me.  When I finally made it to the barn I helped bring in all the horses and waited for Ava to finish her dinner. Then I coerced Ava from her hay, tacked her up, and we headed outside to ride in the outdoor ring. The sun was shining, the birds and squirrels happily flittering and scurrying around.  Ava and I walked the perimeter of the arena on a loose rein, with her stopping occasionally to sniff the breezes. I had forgotten how horses do that. She felt tough on the right rein, and I was tight. It was one of those days, and I already felt uncoordinated and off center. So I steered her out of the arena and we headed out to the field…

A flock of ducks squawked and slapped the water as they raced out of the pond next to us.  A group of geese slowly wandered next to us, watching us warily as we walked passed. Several deer shot from the tree line, brown bodies with flashes of white as they raced across the field. More ducks raising a racket as we walked farther down the path. On the far side of the field is a row of houses. We walk behind them and stare at the odd assortment of things people keep in their backyards. A child screams from the sliding door “Mom, a horse! A horse is in our backyard.”. A tarp slaps the sides of an RV parked in a driveway. We’re passed the houses now, and coming up on the row of pine tree’s where the deer had disappeared. Ava eye’s the tree’s warily, watching for signs of  attacking deer. We’re almost back to the barn, and we walk slowly around to the front where I make Ava step into the big mud puddle. Her neck arches out and down as she debates whether I’m trying to drown her or not. She steps in hesitantly, then marches forward. We ride up along the dirt road, where the stones make Ava mince, so I nudge her back onto the shoulder where the grass cushions her footfalls. We reach the driveway by the main house, and we turn to head back to the barn. The owners dogs are furiously barking and charging the fence next to us. Ava stares at them, debates the severity of the situation before continuing her easy walk passed them.  We stop at the barn and I dismount, give Ava a pat and lead her in to untack. We spend a good fifteen minutes grazing on the new grass as I brush Ava down.

I think Ava enjoyed it.  I sure did.Ava Head Trail

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