Sunday, May 27, 2012

Hot, hot, hot

Wow! This weather has been brutal! Suki has been staying in during the day and going out over night. With heat and humidity at an all time high and unusual for May, I worry about the girls even more than usual! The threat of thunderstorms over night certainly complicates matters. Last night it looked like the storms had finished coming through by around 8 PM, so the horses went out. Of course, at 4 AM I awoke to a raging rain and thunderstorm! Tossing and turning for another hour or so, I finally just got out of bed in my Nyquil fog. The rain had stopped by 6, so I decided to go to Suki on my way to ride Nikki.
It has been a bit of a tough week for me. This flu has gotten the best of me and Michael was out of town from Monday until late Thursday evening didn't help! We made it through and I believe that I am close to the end of its course, although it feels as if I have been run over by a truck!

Yesterday I checked on Suki midday and late afternoon. She was a little sweaty in the middle of the day so I hosed her off and left the shell off while she was in her stall for the rest of the day. Later in the afternoon all was good so I put the shell back on and asked Christine to put the fly sheet over top if it was cool enough prior to turnout. I was a little surprised that the bandage was fine, but Suki rolls less aggressively in her stall....most of the time! My concern was that if there should be a shower over night the fly sheet would help a little after the muddy disaster of being caught in the rain the day before.

This morning I was expecting a wet horse, but when I arrived at the barn Suki and Banker were happily grazing. I called to Suki and she cantered to the gate with Banker close behind. Dry. What a relief. It was already quite buggy so I brought the two horses in and removed Suki's fly sheet. Next stop Nikki. The sky threatened rain again and the Oley Valley was off to a steamy start. Not having been to Valley Mist in a week, I was happy to take in the sights during my drive. Because I stopped by Suki I missed a couple of the usual dairy farms, but passed instead farmer's markets displaying their wares and the occasional Mennonite buggy heading to church. When I pulled into the parking lot at Valley Mist I could hardly contain my excitement. Nikki nickered in response to my greeting and I offered a granola bar.

Grooming and tacking up zapped a bit of my energy, and the distant rumbling of thunder threatened my ride. I knew that I at the very least would lunge Nikki for exercise with the hope of a short ride after. The thunder subsided and I felt a sense of peace as I swung my leg over the saddle. Aaaah....all was good in the world! Nikki was lovely, so tired and sweaty I finished my ride, grateful to have such a wonderful mare. The barn was busier when I finished, and it was nice to be a part of that world again.

Tonight there is another threat of storms so I decided to have Suki stay in. Late afternoon she was comfortable under the shell, but I hosed her off quickly to offer a little refreshment. Suki's skin looked good today and she enjoyed the spa treatment. Fortunately she and Banker did get out for about an hour while the barn was being cleaned, and I will put them out again in the morning for an hour or so. The horses will be in again during the day tomorrow with more heat and humidity expected.

I LOVE the photos of Suki's eye. There is such a calm intelligence in her look. The face of a survivor. The look that says "I have stared down death, and conquered." Suki has been through so much and yet accepts each new day with courage and happiness. I feel like I have learned so much from her and continue to learn each day that we share. My relationship with Suki has helped to shape the one that I have with Nikki, and helps me to appreciate and understand the relationship that I had with Jenny. Me and my girls.

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