Poor Life Choices

Poor Life Choices

We’re having ridiculous Texas weather again.  No, we don’t have piles of snow and tons of rain like some of y’all… but it can be equally as frustrating.  Case in point – Saturday it was in the high 70’s by the end of the day.  Sunday morning the temperature dropped 20 degrees in 30 minutes, and we got lots of wind and rain.  Monday night brought a sleet thunderstorm… but I wasn’t able to ride Sunday and I really wanted to see how he felt post hock injections.

I’m sure you know where this is going.

I put on every layer I had and tacked up Simon as quickly as possible.  He was in his usual, jovial mood to see me but kept looking outside like “What’s going on out there?”

When I brought him to the ring I thought, “Maybe I should lunge?” but decided against it because I wanted to see how he felt under saddle without any warm up.

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I got on and he felt… electric.  I’m thinking this is partially due to injections and partially due to the fact that it was 35 degrees outside with a thunderstorm brewing.  Our first few trot laps around the ring there were coyotes going crazy a bit of a ways behind the barn.  Simon was on alert:

Are you sure we should be trotting right now?  

Our third and fourth lap around the ring I noticed some lightning off in the distance, and some of the pasture board horses were kicking their shelters making loud BANG noises.

Safety may be compromised.  I’m going to trot faster. 

Then the sirens started.

I’m really beginning to think this was not the best idea you’ve ever had.  Suppressing the urge to take off at a gallop.  

And the lightning started getting closer.  We heard thunder.

SO MANY THINGS ARE HAPPENING AND I’M JUST TROTTING LIKE I’VE NEVER TROTTED BEFORE.

I got off and lunged, so I could see his soundness with my own eyes.

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We only got to lunge one direction at the trot with a little bit of canter before I decided the lightning was getting too close and I probably shouldn’t be out at the barn in the middle of a sleet thunderstorm.  After making sure Simon wasn’t too sweaty to blanket (he wasn’t), I threw him back in his stall and apologized for the frantic ride.

On the ride home I spent half the time keeping an eye on my gas gauge (Empty) and half my time keeping an eye on the thermostat (Near Freezing).  It poured about ten minutes from the barn, but I made it home without any ice slippage and without running out of gas.

Combine that with the fact that I officially think Simon feels better after hock injections, and I’m a pretty happy camper this week!

27 thoughts on “Poor Life Choices

  1. I live in Texas as well, and my word, the weather was insane this weekend! I’m so glad to hear that Simon seems to be doing well with his injections – hope to keep hearing good things! 🙂

    1. He’s such a gem about stuff like that. I’m not saying he’s perfect or he’ll give me a great ride, but he does his very best to keep at least one hoof on the ground at all times 🙂

  2. Wow. amazing he’s pretty ok with all that. Glad you got to at least see him go before the crazy weather hit.

  3. Haha! One time I rode up in the hills and watched a big thunderstorm roll in from a ridge.

    And then I realized I was sitting on top of a horse on the highest ridge in the area and it was a thunderstorm. Cue hasty ride home!

  4. We had similar crap weather, except it was sunny and 70 sunday, but dropped monday morning (while I was doing chores) and had an ice storm (which kept freezing the latches on the gates that I needed to open!) Glad you both survived and Simon seems to feel/look better!

  5. Monday here was 77 and raining. Tuesday was 45. MISERABLE.

    I can’t get beyond the mental block of old instructors pulling us from our lesson horses as soon as it started thundering. I just can’t ride in it.

  6. This is going to be a long winded comment but trust me – good stuff here. Having no indoor, and only being able to ride after work – I often ride in the rain and watch the sky for storms. I ride in light thunder but once I see lightening that is it for me. What I have learned is that my horse will tell me when it is safe and when it is not safe. Some days I can ride in the rain and thunder and they are completely normal, quiet, listening. Other times it seems fine but the horses are agitated, not listening, and “up”. I always end these rides immediately because the horse is feeling something in the atmosphere that we are not. Not sure what it is – but it makes them on high alert and nothing is to be accomplished.

    All this to say – horses are really interesting creatures. At least when you ride in snow storms you aren’t really at risk of anything other than being covered in snow lol

    1. Tori, I have to agree with you! I lived in Austin for 3 years, and I definitely experienced the “weather horses”: they absolutely have a way of telling us when it’s safe to ride, and when it’s not. My old trainer (only “old” because I don’t live in Texas anymore) was always very in-tune with how the horses were acting, and she was quick to end any rides when a horse was “up” or acting oddly due to incoming weather. Sometimes, I think horses are better at predicting the weather than people are! 🙂

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