Hi, I'm Ev. I'm training to become a horsewoman. These are my adventures and misadventures. I'm green as hell, but so far, so good. I'm now learning from Bo (and sometimes his wife DeDe) at D&D Ranch in Pope Valley. I am extremely lucky to have this opportunity, I feel quite blessed, and I feel that they, and horses, have really turned my life around.
Solomon is my baby- a big old flea bitten grey Appendix gelding who is very kind and way too smart! I love him so very much. He is a rescue and was meant to be co-owned rehabbed, and maybe rehomed to a good home. He turned out to be over 25 years old with injuries that ultimately do not make him riding sound, so he is retired.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Solomon is top dog!

Hey folks, look who it is!

Sorry for the baby talk, haha!

Solly is settling in to his new home fabulously. There's an unexpected development, however! My calm, sedate, ancient grey man has decided that he is going to be Mister Top Dog! Furthermore, instead of bonding closely with Charley Horse (who is, height-wise, a pony, and awfully cute!) he has decided that Maggie the Mare is the lady for him! Maggie has also decided that Solomon is much more of a dreamboat than her longtime companion, Breaker. Solomon is a home-wrecker!

So now, Solomon has decided that he has a job. His job is keeping the distraught, lovelorn Breaker away from HIS mare.

I hear that things are settling down now, though.

My boy and Maggie.

Solomon, who always hated being backed up, is voluntarily running backwards all over the place now! A horse backing another horse up is a sign of dominance. They also do it in play, but Solly? He's not playing around here.

Look at this suspicious squint! This sneer! "THIS IS MY MARE!"

"She is big and brown and she is MINE!"

So yes, this is what Solomon has been occupying his time with since he moved to the new pasture. He's being a bit of a jerk, but not too bad. Nobody has a mark or a scratch on them. He does everything with his voice, gestures, and body language. He re-directs the other horses. Solomon is an Aikido-hoss.

But really, who can blame him? Who could resist this?

Poor, poor Breaker.

Saturns are also not allowed to be with mares.

Poor old Charley Horse must be content with the fiberglass horse. Later on, he cuddled up to my car, resting his lips on the trunk, cuddling up to the bumper. HE is convinced that my vehicle contains truly magical things!

Look at that grumpers face! BACK UP BREAKER, BACK UP!

And here you can see all the players in the drama, Solomon pulling some extremely silly faces, and rubbing his butt on the rosemary bushes. He has been wormed! So... I guess he just wanted rosemary-butt.

And now for some idyllic photos around the retirement pasture.

Doesn't Breaker have a cool coat pattern? What would you call this, exactly? It is some kind of paint pattern, not lacing. But I haven't a clue!

Four horses, 90 acres!

My boy is going to muscle up with the gentle hill climbing and not so gentle Breaker chasing. That gelding is over 20 years younger than Solly, hah!

In exile, the two geldings are starting to bond a bit.

Charley Horse is wearing California Summer Camouflage.

Meanwhile, down at the big pond, there are a ton of frogs that scream and jump in the water when you get too close! I think they are young bullfrogs. Any guesses?

Speaking of the pond, have some postcard-like photos of my happy boy!

And my absolute favorite shot-

Enjoy! :D

Friday, October 1, 2010

Solly's new home!

Solomon moved on the 29th.

We had to leave our beloved ranch, though neither of us wanted to. We just couldn't afford it any more, and Bo and DeDe are going to move north at some point anyway.

I did my best to project calm, but he knew something was up anyway. He was high energy and snorty from the start. He followed along just fine, and enjoyed his pan of feed, but once I put him in the cross ties, he knew something rotten was up!

First, he got WORMED! OH NO!

Then... then he got a BATH. HORROR! He pawed the ground like there was no tomorrow, he reared and squirmed when I washed his face, he pleaded and begged, but he got CLEAN.

I spent an especially long time cleansing his butt and his tail.

After he dried up, Bo hitched up the trailer. Solomon wanted to run around, but there wasn't much time for it. I let him loose in the round pen, but he stood and watched with great suspicion.

He loaded up wonderfully- pretty much trotted straight in to the trailer. As soon as the bar connected up and we closed the back door, however, he pitched a fit. He screamed and screamed, knowing he was being TAKEN SOMEWHERE.

I felt so very guilty at this point.

I think the new place is going to be a good place for him, but he was so happy at the ranch...

At first, at the ranch, he was all high heads and snorts and spinning around. Bo told the new ranch folks to keep an eye on me, because I had training but sometimes forgot and did something stupid. "If you see her standing on a trash can trying to get up on his back, yell at her, she knows better!"

I love you too, Bo.

After a bribe of grain and a couple of flakes of hay, Solomon settled down, especially when they brought out Charlie Horse. You'll meet him in a moment.

This place is rougly 90 acres or so total. It has a pond and troughs, shelters, grass, and twice daily feedings. It is not a fancy place, but it has nice gentle hills and is, I think, a good place for an old horse like Solomon.

They were eating for a while, but decided to come say hi and investigate as I unloaded some horse supplies from my car.

Nice facial expression, Solly! I have NO idea what he's doing in this photo, actually. Weird pose!

Suspicious horse is suspicious.

But there's hay!

The other two horses, the younger TWHs, were kept in another section of pasture. They decided to introduce gradually, starting out by putting Solomon in with Charley Horse. So far, they seem to be getting along really well. Both grand old gentlemen, though Solomon is quite a bit taller, haha!

This is Charley Horse. He is also a rescue.

He is currently a bit suspicious of me, because I stuck my hands in his mouth. Not in a ddranch stunt kind of way, but to check out his teeth for the mom of the couple I'm boarding with. He'll get used to me, though!

However, I should have been suspicious.

I chased him out of the back seat, but then was sorting through some things in there, only to hear a "GRACHHHHHHH!"

Charley Horse had stuck his head in my half rolled down window and grabbed the empty feed pan with his teeth. He yanked his head back, and shattered my car window!

My poor car!

Thankfully the new folks were kind enough to take care of that. Shihan runs an auto body place, and he hooked me up with some nice glass guys.

Charley didn't mean it though. He's a horse and sometimes random stuff like this happens. They just don't understand car windows!

Anyway, things seem to be going fine there. I will get up to visit again as soon as I can. He's living about 8 miles down the road from Bo, so I can go up there, visit him, and visit Bo as well! <3