Greetings from the West dear friends! Evidently, I’ve severely neglected this ole blog for quite some time. Sadly, life does get in the way, and I guess I don’t think most of my ramblings warrant posting. Oh well, who gives a shit anyway right?
Actually, I thought that winter would bring things at work to a crawl since the farmers can’t do much, but not so! We’ve been super busy and even behind a bit, so I’m pushing the guys hard to get caught up before planting season.
We’ve been pretty lucky in the winter weather department this year; very little snow except up in the high(er) country. I say higher because the ole Rude1 homestead sits just over 9,000’. We’ve also had fairly decent temps this year, with only a few really cold days and nights. Much nicer than the -28 for months we had the last couple of years. I know the farmers want more snow, but I’m just happy I don’t have to plow every other day.
So I was reading BR’s blog the other day and he mentioned how Smokey was being a bit of a pain for the farrier. Well, I suppose I should have paid better attention because my mare and I had a little disagreement on Sunday as I was trying to pull her shoes and trim her feet.
I really should know better since she has always been a bit finicky about having her feet done, but usually she just pulls a bit and tries to step on my feet, then quiets down and lets me do what I have to do. Things were going well at first, she was well behaved as I pulled her front shoes and trimmed her hooves. Things started going south when I started on her hinds. First, she kept pulling her foot out of my hands and stomping her hind feet. We went back and forth a few times like this with her showing her impatience and me talking and rubbing her till she let me pick them back up. Finally, she kicked me in the calf as I was pulling her left rear shoe. Well now, we can’t have that so I went and longed her around for about 10 minutes. She was bucking and showing her dislike for a few minutes, then calmed down and did what she was supposed to. She was listening and obeying my commands like she always does, so I figured she was ready to finish her feet. Boy was I wrong!
I went back to working on her left hind when she pulled her foot out again and tried to kick me. So back to longing we go. I worked her to the left for about 10 minutes and she did perfect. Just as I started her to the right, she came in close and was crowding me. As I stepped back away from her, she kicked back and caught me right below the ribcage, dead on. Now I’d like to tell you that I cowboyed up and ignored the pain while getting her back under control, but that would be a damn lie gentle reader. The fact is, I don’t care who you are, when a horse kicks you full on in the stomach, you go sailing back flat on your back as you curl up into a little ball sucking for air. The good news is that she didn’t catch me directly in the ribs, but the bottom rib on my left side is either cracked or at least severely bruised. Who cares, there isn’t much you can do for it either way, so why go get an x-ray? I can tell it isn’t broken so I’m just taking it a little easy for a while.
In hindsight, I should have known better. She is notorious for being picky about her feet. Usually, it’s just a little inconvenient, but I think that since she’s been in the pasture all winter with little to do, and with the weather starting to get really nice (that is until today) she is getting a bit of spring fever. My wife was upset at my mare but I reminded her what Jeanette Walls wrote in Half Broke Horses; she was just being a horse and really it was my fault. Besides, by the time I was able to get back up and figure out I wasn’t seriously hurt, too much time had passed to correct the mare as she wouldn’t understand the why she was being corrected. Not to worry, we’re going to spend a lot of time teaching her to be more respectful.
So now you know the latest news from the Rude1 Ranch. I’m a bit sore, but none the worse for wear. The mare is running around the pasture with half a pedicure, but we’ll finish that up once I can bend over again.