(note to readers: Brett references this short poem, Flash's Mistake, below).
Hello followers of Annette. Annette has graciously allowed me to be a guest "blogger" for today. I guess Annette has run out of "blogging" topics rehabbing her foot on the couch. This, as most of you will recall from previous blogs and "Hoof prints in My Garden", is the fault of my horse Flash, who tried to install, as best a horse can do, the concept of respect for your elders and leaders. When her horse, Winston, tried to pass Flash at a canter on a trail ride, Flash did as any parent or adult leader would do; he simply attempted to put Winston in his place with a short kick to his side. Unfortunately, Winston, being athletic and young, moved slightly left, and Flash's kick landed on Annette's foot in the stirrup, breaking several toes. Flash apologized profusely, but the blame was already laid. "Flash has to be sold". Yeah, right. Anyway, that out of the way and the air cleared, this blog is about Flash's day at posse training.
|My neighbor and her horse "Tag" who went into "ballistic" bucking mode.|
Up at 0430 to feed and try to "muck", wash Flash, load the trailer, and off to posse training in the San Gabriel foothills before the temperature reaches 100 degrees. This training was an annual certification, but very benign in nature compared to last year. The sensory obstacles were very boring, and Flash was actually asleep through most of them. Walk over a teeter totter, across tarps, pass by flapping flags, and stand still while a starter pistol is shot 2' away from your face and behind your butt. Flash didn't even flinch, his eyes at half mast.
|Mounting up, as graceful as a 63 year can be.|
|boring teeter totter|
There was one exciting moment when one of the posse members had to trot her horse to fill in a blank space, and the horse went into ballistic mode and started "rodeo" bucking right next to Flash. Flash, having learned his lesson about kicking to demand respect and not wanting to be sold, calmly watched as the rider and horse went by. The rider came off seconds later and Flash went over to see if she was ok while her horse continued bucking big time across the arena. The rider, (one of my neighbors), went to the hospital and ended up with 3 broken ribs. Flash felt terrible as though it was his fault for not acting as a responsible adult, and agreed to trailer the injured rider and her horse back home, pending my approval. I said we could do that.
|the posse passing a flag back and forth|
|finished, time for a drink.|
It was a long, hot day, but the best part was when everybody went into town for lunch and I stayed with the horses. I had put Flash in a small pipe corral, and went over to just hang with him for about 20 minutes. We stood in the corner of the pipe corral with a warm breeze blowing and me rubbing the bone behind Flash's ear. Flash was totally relaxed, almost snoring with his back leg cocked and his butt half way to the ground. He lowered his head and leaned it against the pipe corral, right next to my head and we bonded for at least 15 minutes.
Yeah buddy, NOBODY is going to sell you!