"Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion. It seizes a person whole and once it has done so, he/she will have to accept that his life will be radically changed." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, September 9, 2011

Hello there, Mother Nature.

Fred and I survived our first serious travel event since the trailer incident in July.  It took help from Cindy to get him on the trailer, but once on Fred stayed put.  It was just me and him at Carousel Park while we got ready.  He was quite cooperative despite his increased height! We had a great schooling with Sally and the group.  Sally kept us at BN so we would have a confidence building ride. 

We had to jump up the bank a few times.  Fred doesn't jump in a way that will propel me out of the tack.  The more I think about it, that's probably a good thing.  When we do certain jumps, I have to be strong enough to get myself out of the tack, hold it, and stay out of his way.  We worked on having the correct canter to fences.  It's forward, not up and down.  As usual, I have to ignore Fred's celebrations and ride.  We had one run out because I didn't ride him straight to a fence.  Sally really got after me! It was appropriate butt kicking.  After that Fred and I had several good fences, which made the last few weeks of frustration worth it.

On Monday, Paige and I started practicing for our pairs debut on Sept 25 at Twin Brooks.  Watching us try to stay together must be hilarious.  

At the end of our ride Monday, the rain started.  It hasn't stopped since then! Wednesday was the worst.  There was horrible flooding in the Susquehanna Valley!  I went out and saw cars submerged, scared parents who couldn't get to their children, and rushing rivers in places that are no where near water.  My dad started pumping water out of their basement Wednesday around 2pm and is still pumping water out of the basement.  At best, they were able to keep the water level at around a foot.  

Wednesday afternoon and evening I went out and took photos and video of my area.  A mile radius around our house in Hershey saw major damage.  The area had not seen flooding like this since Hurricane Agnes in 1972.  

The weather has changed some upcoming plans.  Lauren and I had hoped to get our redheads back to eventing at Olney on Sept 18 but yesterday they cancelled the event.  We're bummed but also relieved that all of us are safe and in one piece. 

After hours of work on the ring yesterday, Cindy has made it possible for to ride in the outdoor again with Sally today. 

Saturday afternoon I will be home to cheer my #23 Penn State Nittany Lions on against #3 Alabama.  I hope everyone going to the game is careful and plans accordingly.  The main road from Harrisburg to PSU is out due to the flooding.

Sunday will be an early start.  The Fair Hill horse trial moved from Saturday to Sunday.  I will be there to help Sally with her rides.  Her first ride is 8:04 am.  I will be able to stay and see Cindy and Graham.  After that, I must rush home in time to shower and head to the airport.  I'm flying to Atlanta Sunday evening and then driving to Montgomery, Alabama for the week.  

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