Never Did Warm Up
The hose to the water trough was frozen this morning, so I had to carry the water in buckets. Not a big deal, but a sure sign of dropping temperatures. The wind had died down and the sun kept peeking out, so I had some hope--to little avail.
All day long, something was nagging at me. I was restless and kept feeling there was something "hanging over my head." There was something I needed to do, or something wrong I wasn't going to be able to fix. I kept going over and over in my head a list of all the things I've done or not done for the last few days to no avail.
Then somewhere around 3 PM, the phone rang. It was my church choir director and friend telling me he was cancelling choir rehearsal this evening because his wife--my dear friend--was in critical condition in her battle with cancer at the hospital. He was really upset, so I know it was a pretty serious setback. I took on the job of contacting the rest of the choir to tell them what was going on and that we weren't going to rehearse.
Dawn, my friend, is one of the sweetest people I know. She had just finished a round of chemo and radiation therapy with great success only to find the cancer had spread to another place, requiring a new type of chemo treatment. They may be moving her to the a specialized Cancer Institute soon where, I hope, they will be better able to deal with all the side effects and problems she is suffering from. All I can do for now is pray. Good vibes and prayers from all of you would be appreciated.
Once I got Don's call and called all the choir members, the sense of "something is wrong," eased a bit, so I can only guess I was getting psychic connections to Dawn.
At that point, I needed to do something useful, so I headed outdoors. First I considered doing some leaf mowing only to find three--that's right 3--flat tires on the surviving lawn tractor--I may have "killed" the other one. Since that meant an entire adventure of pulling out the air compressor and the extension cord and sitting in the cold garage hoping to get the tires pumped up, I opted out of that chore and headed for the barn.
I checked out the footing in the arena and found that there was at least a 20m circle thawed enough to ride a little and told Tucker I only wanted to ride him for a few minutes to see how he was feeling after his 4th shot of Pentosan.
He came over to me and helped me put his head in the halter. As agreed, I only rode him for perhaps 5 minutes at the most. Once again, on the right rein, he fussed about trotting off, but when I turned him onto the left rein, with a little encouragement--no real walk warm up this time--he trotted off. At first it seemed a little tentative, but after a few strides he began moving out quite nicely. I reversed and trotted on the right, reversed again, did a few half halts/walk/trot transitions, walked a little and trotted again. He seemed pretty willing to keep going. I did not try to canter as I wasn't keen about the footing. There just wasn't enough cushion.
I keep thinking that his reluctance to trot off is an anticipation of pain more than pain. I only say that because once he gets going, he seems relatively willing to work. The other day I even did lateral work and he just kept going without problems.
It's not the best time of year to jump to any conclusions about his soundness, though--at least not with the footing like it's been for the last week. But so far, so good.