January 09, 2011

Snowy Ride

Riding in the winter can be a challenge for most riders.  Only those insane enough about horses will face a cold, snowy day.  It helps remarkably to have a indoor arena at my disposal, otherwise on days like this I doubt I'd get riding in at all.  There are some things though about riding on a cold wintry day that warms the heart.

  • Snowflakes in pony's dark, fuzzy coat
  • The tabby cat sleeping on the seat of an old western saddle
  • Horse breath in your pockets searching for carrots
  • The warmth of a horses back as you ride without a saddle
  • My warm, fleece lined winter jodphurs
  • The silence of the barn yard
  • The protection and subtle warmth of the arena while you and your horse are bundled up in jackets, looking into the cold outdoors
  • The black dog curled up in a pile of hay, so content and deep in sleep he doesn't bother to look up as you trudge by carrying your armful of tack

It was just me and Willy today, I didn't see anyone else aside from the horses, dogs and cats.  We stayed in the indoor arena, which I am so glad to have access to this during the winter.  Any place I decide to board will have to have one of these!  I'd pay extra just for that luxury!  I rode Willy at the trot mainly and worked on my leg position like in my lesson on Friday.  Then after about an hour of riding I took off the saddle and rode him around bareback at the walk.  On days like these I wish I had a bit warmer, the cold bit in my hand is freezing and then also is cold against my stomach as I warm it up within my jacket.  I know Willy appreciates not having a cold bit in his mouth, I would just love to have something that did it quick and easy!

I thought about Pstar today though.  I really can't afford her.  On paper I can but my budget would be so tight that if something happened, a car issue, a doctor issue...I would be living so tight and never able to make headway on getting my debt down or taking care of other obligations.  I owe it to myself, Steve and my future horse, whether it will be Pstar or someone else to be in a better financial position when I take on horse ownership.  In 7 months I will have $300 more a month after paying off one bill, in about 6 or 7 more another bill paid off will give me yet another $200.  This is on top of the money I have each month that makes it so "I could afford a horse right now" and pay $250 board and a payment on the horse.  If I bought her now my financial cushion would be a rock...a year from now, it will be a pillow top mattress with a heavy down comforter on top!  I will be sitting in a much better place to keep a horse and build my savings....and yes even have a life outside my horse. 

I owe it to Pstar to not be hasty in buying her but by getting set up right so I can indeed offer her a forever home.  Again she may not even be the horse for me but if she turns out to be I don't want to have remorse in anyway when I do claim her as mine.  Hopefully I can get to know her better in the next year so my worries about whether we'd be a good match or not can be calmed.  She is for sale and I know Laurie needs to get some of the sale horses moving so she can get another lesson horse.  If she is sold to someone else, it wasn't meant to be between us, if she isn't sold by the time I can buy her then perhaps she is my dream horse.  Only time will tell.  I'm glad I have Steve to talk to me sensibly, he understands the emotional side of me and that the feelings I have around Pstar can get me thinking with my heart more than my head.  I need to get the stuff my head is concerned about squared away and then I can think all heart and choose my riding partner for life!  Oh the heartache!
Misty, one of Willy's new paddock mates.  He's not nice to her though!

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