"trailers for sale or rent, rooms to let $0.50, no phone, no pool, no pets. . . I'm a man of means by no means King of the Road!"
All right, so Arabee and I aren't exactly ruling the road, but we sure have been spending a lot of time walking it. Also, I hope at least some of you are humming that song to yourselves while reading this post!
On Sunday I wanted to see how far 15 minutes of handwalking got us as we traveled south. I'll check the distance with the car maybe today if I remember, but we got past B & S's house to "the roost" and then past the north side of the field about 50 feet. I know this means almost nothing to anyone reading, but in another 5 minutes of walking we'd have probably reached the barn with the arena.
Which probably means that it wouldn't be too much of an advantage to trailer Arabee over there if I am able to ride in it again. By the time I'd get the truck started, warmed up, hitched to the trailer, put the tack in the trailer, loaded her up, drove down there, unloaded her, tacked up, got in the barn, rode, got out of the barn, untacked, loaded back up, drove back home, unloaded Arabee, unloaded the tack, parked the trailer, and unhitched the truck....I think it would take about the same amount of time to just walk down there! And I am out of shape enough it will do me a lot of good to do just that!
I am unclear though about the Rules of the road when it comes to walking your horse on it. Pedestrians are supposed to walk against traffic, with the right shoulder towards the road. Bicyclists are supposed to ride with traffic, with the left shoulder towards the road. My guess is that when I'm walking Arabee, we're Pedestrians, but if I were Riding her on the road, we'd ride WITH traffic, like a Bicyclist would? Does anyone know the law on this? I want to follow the rules in case an accident would happen we'd be in the right.
There isn't much traffic on the road, really. In a little over 1/2 hour of walking, only 4 vehicles came by. The trouble is that half of the time the vehicles were noisy trucks, which are a little more scary apparantly for Arabee than SUVs or cars. Judging from her current reaction - I could ride out a passing SUV or car if it slowed down, but it'd be a little iffy if a truck passed. Right now, I make sure we keep walking, and assuming traffic is clear, we turn around and face the vehicle as it approaches. She's fine as it approaches, but once it's behind her she gets a little fast/bouncy. It's good practice for her to be on the road while I'm on the ground.
Her hooves have been improving also since I've been walking her on the road - they look nice! It's so neat to watch the way they wear on their own.
I'll post more soon about the bitless headgear. I've ordered something, and it should ship tomorrow, but I'll wait until I try it out to post more about it.
Also, on Saturday (posting this since a lot of the point of the blog is to keep a log of what we do) I tacked Arabee up - saddle, breastcollar, and crupper, just to remind her that the crupper was okay. I wasn't dressed to ride, so I just walked her down to the house where Matt was unloading a wagonload of fire wood into our woodshed. He'd just finished up, and he fired up the old JD 50 tractor to put the wagon away. Rodeo time! So we walked (me) and bounced sideways (Arabee) along while he put the wagon away, then followed him back. She finally did calm down, but it took a little bit. It took longer than it should've, I think because she was feeling good and it was fun to snort and prance, and it was cold and brisk.
Anyway, I've been having fun gradually getting back in shape, and playing around with Arabee, even if I'm too wimpy to actually get on and ride in the cold right now! We'll get there, soon enough.