A jump jockey has to throw his heart over the fence – and then go over and catch it. – Dick Francis
Category Archives: Horses
Ever since the start of November I really haven’t had the opportunity to start anything interesting, yet alone blog about it*. AP Literature & Composition stole every writing-based cell in my body for the year. Adam and Madam are fine as usual, locked inside the corral and away from the pasture for the winter. While riding Adam I popped over a few jumps with him. They were all under a foot, probably closer to 6-8 inches. Still, I think that’s an accomplishment for him! I also bought new spurs, which help a lot with cantering. They are gorgeous English spurs with black Italian leather straps, studded by two blue crystals on each.
Anyways, I can’t believe there are only ten more days until Christmas! Thanksgiving absolutely flew by, thanks to the huge amount of schoolwork and projects I’m facing in my junior year. Last Saturday I finally had a great chance to relax when my best friend Bolana invited me to a dance. There we had fun dancing (yes, I actually danced and loved it!) and Bolana introduced me to her homeschooled friends. Then all that I have to do is survive two school weeks and…Christmas break! I wonder what wonderful horse-related presents are awaiting me this year. There’s a gorgeous white sheepskin show saddle pad that I saw in a tack shop that I would love to have for future horse shows! I updated Adam’s vaccinations and u test so he is good to go for showing this spring/summer! I am continuing to take riding lessons and they are going very well. My instructor said I have a beautiful seat (thank Adam for that!). We’ll jump after Christmas and then who knows what? She also said she’d let me try riding in a double bridle, which is another piece of tack I adore. Come on, Christmas break…just six more school days!!
P.S. I have a new phone now, so expect many pictures sometime soon! :)
* Actually, I wrote a Shakespearean sonnet but didn’t like the end result.
When I logged onto my blog earlier this morning I searched through my oldest blog posts and pages’ revision records, hoping to discover some trace of my old horse posts. I remember when I started the Archies back in the spring of 2008, a few days before I broke my leg riding Adam through a door. In one follow-up post to the incident I remember typing out everything I ever felt about him, including the infamous disappointment of having the horse I love (and whose vet bill cost a lot of money the previous summer) repay me by bolting off and breaking my leg. Although in those days I didn’t quite bother to write as thoroughly and organized as I do now, I still wish I had a trace of those posts left. I deleted them when I started cleaning up this blog and categorizing my posts, thinking that they ‘didn’t fit’ and had no real relation to my other blog content. Well, was I ever wrong!
A few posts complaining about Adam’s unruliness may not seem too significant to everyone else in the equestrian community but they meant everything to me. I could have restored them had they been kept privately instead of permanent deletion. I could have used them as a tangible marker, a ‘before’ snapshot to compare to Adam the reliable best friend today. I plan on typing out a full story of both of my horses but I only wish I had the original primary source to enahance it with. Oh, well. There is no use ranting about what cannot be changed, I suppose. Instead I will have to merely retell my J.B. Stables stories, starting from the day of my grandfather’s death in seventh grade to the past county fair. Perhaps explaining this way could be better after all, now that more of my horseloving friends are aware of this blog and now have the chance to learn anything about my background they possibly missed.
There is meaning to my horse stories. I recall what I said on the way to the hospital that March evening -I wanted Adam dead ASAP. (Obviously, I did not carry through with this idea.) Now I realize that if Adam did die, I would never be the person I am today. It was because of him, one of my first horses, that I learned through the mistakes I made. Over the years I developed a bulletproof of determination (some call it stubborn, I say there is a difference).
Hobos cannot live in cardboard boxes for their entire lives. Sooner or later they have to crawl out and walk around to find a more sustainable shelter. Under a bridge, a tunnel, or endlessly strolling through a 24-hour WalMart -anything built enough to suffice. If they choose to rely upon a cardboard dwelling they will find themselves in a soggy, wet mess. I will not be that hobo.
Thanks to Adam, I never will be.
The stories in this post will continue throughout the blog posts and pages. Part of the above post can be found on my ‘J.B. Stables’ page under the heading of my stable story.
Today is the one month anniversary since the day Adam and I rode into our first horse show together.
I know I have not updated this blog as much as I hoped to this past month. I am also aware that my late updates have happened before, believe me, I did not purposely intend for them to be that way. I love keeping this blog to record my life in and to talk about topics which matter to me. Unfortunately, I do not feel the same way writing in this blog as I once did when I started it. I am NOT going to stop writing –I merely plan to change how I write.
I started The Archives during my…early seventh? grade year back in Junior High. First I documented the things I loved, being primarily horses and my current projects. I started posting a few of my stories (Remember my ancient horribly written Shadow Realm drafts and old horse stories? My incessant three-line posts detailing every aspect of “ADAM BROKE MY LEG THIS WEEK!! WHY WOULD HE DO SUCH A THING WHEN I TRIED SO HARD TO TAKE CARE OF THE LAMINITIS IN HIS FEEEEEET?!?!?!?”) It was true, my posts were not as well-organized and written as they are now. Eventually I took my old work down and replaced it with the later content you see today. There is one element of this blog which I could not replace, however; the fun and love I put into building and playing around this piece of online space which I call my own. I miss posting the tiny snippets of my horseback rides and stories of fictional racehorses-turned-champions. Eventually more of my friends started visiting my blog for my writing and, well, I made the mistake of transitioning this blog too much into little more than a collection of literature. I loved writing, but horses were, are, and always will be the number one love in my life. Now I have –what?- one or two pages dedicated to my stables? That’s IT?! I meant to fix this problem sooner but more things got in the way –pressure to continue the series I started and other activities dealing with school and the outside world. Eventually I trimmed down my documentation of ‘J.B. Stables’ on my blog because a few friends felt it would not fit in with my fantasy-themed Shadow Realm content.
Well, I don’t care anymore. Now that I revamped my blog into a format I love, why not revamp the content I love as well? I know I babble incessantly about my horses in real life but I know for sure I have enough energy to continue on! Yes, I don’t post any more of Adam’s laminitis updates (since he recovered for now) or pour my heart into another post dealing with “WHY CAN’T I SHOW, I WANNA SHOOOOW!!!”. Then I decided to keep my nose to the grindstone for a bit and let go of that type of equine updates –until now.
With the recent posts about my first horse show with Adam and my future English riding lessons at another stable, I absolutely cannot wait to keep with with the current of equine related content on here! More exciting things are happening –things worth blogging about which will entertain my non-equestrian readers as well. (Although if you don’t like horses, why are you reading this? Why do you even KNOW ME?! Haha!) I feel like a little 12 year old again, jumping for joy because I lasted a grooming session “Without getting bit, daddy!!”
It’s time for a revolution. I do not plan on removing my non-equestrian literary content at the moment but I will enforce this blog’s reversion back to the horse world (it never truly left!) once again. So what if my parents don’t want me to be a horse jockey or don’t understand how important my stable is to me? They’ll have to deal with it sometime.
P.S. By the end of 2011, I want to make ‘Horses’ my top category for blog posts!
This gallery contains 3 photos.
As promised in my earlier post, I will continue my county fair adventures from Sunday. Since no major events occurred after Sunday at the fairgrounds, I decided to end my journal on Sunday. Sunday I woke early on Sunday morning to start grooming Adam for his first show, the fair’s judging at halter. For the […]
Today was the first day of my junior year in high school. While other classmates complain over the transition from summer to autumn, I really have nothing to regret.
On Wednesday morning I returned from the county fair riding down the road on Adam’s back. After eating five days of fair food and living in the midst of the fair in dream land, I feel thankful that I had the opportunity to spend those days with my horse.
Early Friday morning I checked, double checked, and triple checked my horse show packing list. After a fiasco involving the misplacement of my parking passes (it was no big deal, really, the fair office simply re-issued them) my parents and I loaded up the truck with my carnival-camping baggage and we drove to the stable. There the rest of my tack and horse supplies were packed. I saddled up Adam and we started the grand ride to the fairgrounds. At first Adam handled the ride according to the usual riding on the road routine. This continued until we stopped to take a break around Mammoth Park. Adam, realizing the suspicious length of the ride, whinnied back towards the stable for Madam. After becoming aware he was too far away for a reply, he suspected he was on no ordinary trip. Nevertheless he obediently (in an Adam-ly fashion) continued riding. A while later we encountered another horse and rider headed to the fairgrounds. We rode together while talking about our hopes for the fair week and horse shows associated with it. I believe Adam enjoyed meeting some company, too. Finally –just beating an approaching thunderstorm- we arrived at the fairground gates at the entrance. The veterinarian cleared Adam’s CVI and I took him to his stall.
The traditional horse barn was overbooked this year so additional stalls were set up under a huge tent next to the rabbit exhibit. Adam and I quickly befriended the other exhibitors and their horses in our row. I met an English rider and her beautiful Thoroughbred, the girl I originally met en route to the fair, and another young girl with her bay Morgan cross. Adam, an attention lover, enjoyed the presence of endless excitement and constant entertainment.
In the horse arena below the fair 4-H had their horse show. To prepare for the overwhelming (and to a horse, potentially frightening) surroundings of the fair’s open show on Sunday I saddled Adam and took him down to one of the schooling rings. At first he did not concentrate at all. His ears whipped from back and forth, from side to side listening to the foreign noises coming from the horses around him. Sometimes he tried to follow behind other horses in the ring and even attempt to imitate the gaits or patterns they were riding in! After adjusting to the practice of riding among other horses Adam and I reviewed our exercises for the horse show on Sunday. I believe he enjoyed the larger arena with softer ground compared to the arena at home. When afternoon approached (all horses had to be in their stalls by four o’ clock) I returned Adam to his stall and untacked him. Impressed, I felt that he would handle his first show on Sunday rather well.
I will save my account of the Sunday horse show to Wednesday morning for a separate post. For now, I must return to my new school-based lifestyle until more free time is available.
To the fair! I just returned from horse camp earlier in the week, enough time to finish the final preparations needed for this coming weekend at the fairgrounds. Tomorrow morning Adam and I will ride from the stable for a 5-6 mile trip to the fair. Our travel may take any time around or over two hours but I know we’ll make it there. I can’t believe I am finally showing! After the typhoon of calamity and disappointment shadowing us for the past couple years, I feel like a strange survivor freeing themselves from a shipwreck.
Thanks, Adam, for being a cartoon character who falls in countless episodes only to return onscreen again with the same designed-for-TV poise as before. Thanks for putting up with me since I became your owner in 2007. Believe it or not, I treasure every ride you ever gave me and every lesson you caused me to learn. Finally, I can never thank you enough for the adventure you are about to spend with me at the fair. I know you will ride and shine your best in the show ring.
P.S. No, I will not remove your muzzle until your chance of foundering is lessened upon winter’s approach. :)
I will be away the coming week of August 7th-13th for horse camp. I hope to upload Another Stage Play (The Fourth Curtain) before my departure. Expect more horse-related content (at last!) after my return!
I took my county fair entry papers up to the fairgrounds today and turned them in. The lady collecting my entry stated that it would take only fifteen minutes for her to get my sleeping pass and other exhibitor papers. I agreed to wait for my papers at the fairgrounds and pass some time walking around the grounds. Today a Quarter Horse breed show circuit held a show and there were gorgeous Quarter Horses everywhere! Most were preparing for the halter classes. While walking through one of the barns (the horse barn where Adam will probably stay for the county fair) I saw an old friend. The horse I rode during my riding lessons back in seventh grade was there, braided up and standing in a stall! I greeted him and stood around to see if my former instructor would be there as well. She wasn’t but another person in the barn said that I could probably stop by and check again at a later time. I hope I could find a moment to at least say hello to her tomorrow. I would like to ask her about taking riding lessons again, because I really wanted to ride at her stable again for a while. Perhaps I could ride English for her this time.
This is the first of probably two posts for this week. The second will pertain to my excitement towards my family’s yearly trip to the beach. This current post also follows a tradition, a somewhat recent habit reoccurring around the last week of July since the last three years. It involves the fate of my county fair entries for the coming August, previously disappointing for the last three years.
A little over three years ago I dreamed of entering Adam, my Quarter Horse, in the local county fair. Unfortunately my desire was nearly impossible considering we don’t have a trailer or any equestrian friends willing to haul for me. On top of that it has been only myself making plans for showing since neither of my parents are interested in horses. A person would probably think “So this has been going on for three years, right? What makes you think this year will be any different? You still have the same problems, right? What’s going to change that?”
Well, those results stopped here. Now. Why? Yesterday afternoon I walked out of my veterinarian’s office holding Adam’s Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (mandatory for all animals transported to shows). On the way home I finished filling out my registration papers and wrote a reminder to make a copy of the certificate at work the next day.
Yes, I am finally entering Adam in this year’s county fair and horse show.
My registration is ready to be submitted and Adam is well conditioned to make a 5-6 mile ride to the fairgrounds. I haven’t felt this ecstatic in a LONG while! Over time I learned to stop listening to everyone else’s whiny criticism and follow whatever I think works.* It’s about time, too! I have a gorgeous steampunk-themed western show bridle designed back in the spring that I can’t wait to use in the ring! The show is in exactly 31 days from today. Adam and I will most likely start our show career by riding in the western walk/trot class. There is a lot of preparation going into the fair this year and I feel extremely excited!
*I am fairly sure the term for that is “irritatingly stubborn” or “shows obsessive determination”.