Well, first off – perhaps I should resolve to post new entries more often. However, I am not certain I can promise to stick with that. Besides – “real job” commitments, family commitments, and having a hobby with animals that require 24/7 care is not conducive to regular posts on an internet blog that may or may not have any point to it.
Which leads to another reflective question – why in the name of Pete do we do this to ourselves? Could I just quit and walk away? Is it worth all of the work? Is there any point to this rat race of shovel it in, shovel it out??
Honest answers – I cannot ever see quitting being a horse owner. For some reason, the endless work, bills, worry, etc seem to be part of the attraction. There is probably a diagnosis (addiction – perhaps) that could be correctly applied here. (Just one, you ask) By and large, puttering around the barn is rather satisfying. I imagine the satisfaction could be achieved with about ten less animals in the barn, but between those that pay for the privilege of being here, those that thoroughly earned their retirement, those that are currently working or earning their keep, or those that are the husband’s oversize pasture puffs – who would go?
My “if I won the lottery dreams” all revolve around high end fencing, footing, saddles, extensive veterinary care investments, fancy stall fronts, and pastures full of OTTB’s enjoying a well deserved soft landing. Trust me, a new vehicle will be involved, but I am more excited about high end breeches than designer clothes.
As if that is not bad enough, my chosen focus is dressage. Being a dressage rider should be in the DSM-IV. From the beginning, a dressage rider is doomed to fail. The entire basis for the philosophy is the the pursuit of perfection and harmony. As if that is not unachievable, you are also trying to convince an 11oo pound animal to join in the pursuit of the previously mentioned unattainable goal. For the uninitiated, the horse is the far smarter partner – the horse realize that the true purpose of life is to eat grass and to heck with Xenophon and his mumbo jumbo. One of the underlying “truths” is that 99% of the time, it is the rider’s fault that the execution of the philosophy falls short.
And yet, the diatribe is not over. As bad as inflicting this on myself, I am paid to indoctrinate unsuspecting individuals into this pursuit. Drug dealers go to jail, riding instructors are perfectly legal. I am certain there are a few fathers who grind their teeth when they hear my name, particularly if the mother is now just as involved. Dad suggested ballet lessons as a birthday present, but no, Mom thought riding lessons would be a great 6th birthday present. Being a product of a very similar story (my parents are still married by the way), one would think I would know better.
My darling husband maintains that should he ever have to date again, if the women so much as mentions horses, he will simply stand up and leave. I should probably be highly offended by that, but he may have a point.