Riding Days~~Sept. 19, 2015
Summer days have drifted by like soft clouds in a blue sky; a gentle breeze pushed them out. How did autumn get here so fast?
September mornings are a far cry from June when birds roused us out of bed to 5 am sunshine. I leaned against the kitchen sink, filled the coffee pot and stared at the sunrise. I was captured while water overflowed down the sink. Sunrise trembled at dawn's edge.
The divine artist rubbed a thick stripe of fluorescent pink across velvet canvas. Neon orange smudges bordered the pink. Thumbprints of shimmering scarlet clustered nearby, picking up metallic highlights.
I quickly filled the coffee maker, added coffee, pressed the button and turned back to the light show. The edge of the scarlet fireball arose and punctured the black velvet sky, more intense with each blink of the eye. "Red sails in the morning, sailors take warning", say mariners. Charcoal clouds were building up from the southwest.
Rain spat and sputtered all morning long.
The weatherman said the afternoon would clear, so Rafter Red, the young Australian Shepherd, and I were keeping our afternoon date to ride at Carol's. The dog still hadn't figure out how to load up in the car on his own. I laid the leash along the length of the seat, opened both back doors, and called him from one door while he looked thru the other. He finally climbed in. He worried about the whole thing, but we soon were driving down the rain-spattered road.
Red is such a friendly dog--didn't chase Carol's cats and was learning other ranch rules from Carol's dog, especially how to be a good guest.
*****************I showed Carol what I learned at the Mustang horse demo at the farm show about releasing the hind quarters by blocking rather than driving them over--we used her gray gelding. Then we took the palomino mare and the older Paint, High Top, out to the arena. The dogs ran back and forth along the fence line, then came in and Red kept pace with the mare I was riding. Around and around the arena we rode until the rain whispered down.
When the sun peeked back out we went into the big pasture and gave the dogs a good run. Red just loves going along. Between his youth and his lankier build and less furry coat, he doesn't get as overheated as my old Aussie dogs used to. We rode to the big windmill and tanks and splashed thru the overflow--fetlock deep, horses and dogs splish-splashed thru the clear water, feet stirring up clouds of silt. We followed the southern fence line, riding in and out of deep dappled shadows and brighter sunshine and we took note of where the storm felled trees and branches across the barbed wire.
The clouds were breaking up: broad patches of bright blue coming thru, clouds breaking up into clusters of white and pale gray. It was a perfect riding afternoon! We had such a nice time--it put us in touch with those teenage girls still lurking in our hearts--the girls we used to be, ambling with relaxed pleasure across September on colorful horses along side joyful pup' dogs. Does it get much better? Nah, probably not.