Thursday, February 23, 2012
Beautiful, warm day today though uncharacteristic for February in Pennsylvania. When I walked out to get Nikki the sun felt warm on my face with a bit of a breeze picking up. I walked to the back part of the farm to the paddock that Nikki is usually in and called her name. No response. Then I realized that there were two horses in the paddock and Nikki goes out by herself now (she was being naughty about getting caught when she was out with her friend Andi!). As I looked around at the other paddocks I heard Nikk's voice calling to me. I turned back toward her voice and she looked at me, calling again. She almost appeared to be worried that I didn't see her. As I made my way around to the gate Nikki followed and practically threw herself into my arms when I opened the gate! It was the sweetest gesture! Yesterday she was turned out next to the foal, and I was told that she was reaching over the fence and licking the baby. The first time I met Nikki she walked up to me and rested her head on me like a big dog. While she has her occassional marish moments, and can sometimes be territorial in her stall, for the most part Nikki continues to be a sweet girl and a delight to ride. I am so looking forward to show season! Driving home I passed the cows lazily dozing in the afternoon sun. When I drove past the former Pink Star I started to turn away, when a cloud of bay caught my eye. The wind must have starteled the yearlings in their field, causing them to gallop across the hill and down to the shed. Manes and tails flying they turned wide slowing as they approached the gate. Then more than a dozen bay heads turned in the direction of whatever had frightened them. I could practically feel the earth move! Such a contrast to the sleepy cows! I am not having much success connecting with additional groups or individuals for Suki to meet as a therapy horse. Maybe I am just not looking in the right place. In addition to burn survivors, FB fans who are struggling with illness, cancer survivors, special needs, etc have spoken about how Suki inspires them. She has the ability to help people simply by being who she is, and for making it through a tragedy with her spirit intact. I am a bit hesitant to contact support groups because they might think it is creepy, but maybe some of the students in the therapeutic riding program for which I will be volunteering will be interested. I seem to have lost my connection with the person who originally was involved with burn survivors, so I guess I just have to do more investigating. Because of the warm afternoon and the soft footing I decided to lunge Suki today. We need to get back to a regular routine of work in preparation for long lining. February is not usually the time to start that, but the spring-like weather has me dreaming big! She was a little silly on the walk to the arena, and id a few leaps on the lunge line at first....but I pushed her forward and she settled nicely into work. We just did 5 minutes in each direction since her fitness level is not great, and I just asked her to do big loose trots and canters. The wind certainly kept her moving forward but she did listen to my commands. Such a good girl! She called to the horses once, but stopped when I growled at her. I think we both enjoyed it. Hopefully we can do that again on Saturday, although it is supposed to be quite windy, and I don't want her to be nutty and cause injury. I guess we'll see!