Archive for February, 2003

PostHeaderIcon Luke – Level 2 Wannabee Horse

Here’s an amazing story of the L2 wannabee horse. His name is Luke
and he’s a National Show horse about as tall as the Empire State
building. When he was first in training with Jenny and Tony,
Anything would make him leap high in the air and land on the other
side of the arena. He would give Tony (who can ride anything with
hair) a run for his seat. Thinking about Luke being rode outside was an impossible thought.

Things progressed and Luke started using his brain to think. He even
got to be rode outside.

Luke was for sale to a PNH home. Most of us PNH home people were
fearful adult-beginning-riders with enough savvy to realize that Luke
wasn’t in our league.

Gasp…he became a lesson horse for our advanced teenage riders..and
younger adults. (None of us old adults would ever dare ride Luke, no
matter how safe he appeared to be)

Then he was half leased by one of the teenagers.

Our young adult who works at the barn…beloved of everyone… fell in
love with Luke a long time ago. she bore the leasing of the horse to
the young teenage girl with well concealed jealousy. She wanted Luke
for her own horse. Sharing Luke was not in her dream. She finally
swung a deal and bought Luke.

They do marvelous…with a little bit of excitement when you
watch…or ride in a group lesson with them. Every now and then she
forgets and relaxes a little too much, he startles at something and
she falls off. But HAY! She is young and bounces right back.

In 2001, she passed level 1 on Luke. We were all joyful. Her goal
was to pass L2 in 2002.
Here it is in 2003. Luke has passed all but one of his L2 tasks.

Oh sure, everyone nods sagely. It’s the flying lead changes.

Nope. He passed flying lead changes about the middle of 2002. He’s
an athletic long-legged thing!

His owner kept telling me that she was almost finished with level 2.
The other day she said that she only had one more task to do. Flying
Lead changes? I said…as I had forgotten that they already did them.

Nope, she mumbled. What?! I said, not imagining what it could be.

mummble mummmble…pole….L mumble backing

Huh? I said.

“Backing thru the L” she snapped! “When he backs thru the L, and the
pole touches his back feet, he leaps into the air! He does it on the
ground, but not when I ride! He can’t stand those poles touching his
feet when I ride him.”

I disolved in laughter. This is the only horse in the world with the
last L2 task of backing through poles. All us other people are
struggling with flying lead changes! Good GAD!!! Horses are
something else.


Those normal people of us from the Midwest know better than to have
anything to do with Nebraska in the winter. Why the whole place gets
cold and snow and closes down for the winter.

When I heard that a Nebraska person wanted to have a clinic in the
winter, I said, “A clinic in Nebraska in the winter? Why that’s
crazy!”   So, a winter clinic was scheduled. Of course it’s my job to
go to all clinics with Jenny so that she can have someone carry stuff
around, get auditors to participate in the warm up morning sessions,
jaw around with people and take charge of the beach balls. It’s an
important job that I do, and I take it very seriously.

So…I just assumed this must be a heated arena since no one in their
right mind would schedule a clinic in Nebraska in the winter!

WRONG…we had a little tiny restroom off the arena that had a
baseboard heater. That’s it!!!!!!!!!!! This was a two day clinic.
It snowed part of the time we were there. Occasionally, it got

Guess what..The clinic was full!…There were AUDITORS! AUDITORS who
sat there for two days in the 24-26 degree heat! I kept warm only by
moving and wore 25 lbs of clothes. With all my clothes on, I was
almost as big as the restroom! I looked like a winter Pillsbury
dough boy. My arms stuck out about 10″ from my body.

The riders had a great time. I love the moment when they all realize
that they are going to ride their horses with one rein and the halter!

No wrecks…everything went just great! We had a fine time. Jenny
had a L1 assessment and an hour lesson after the clinic was over on
Saturday. We froze to death during that time.

Then we had to eat.  At the restaurant, I was trying to stay awake while I was eating.  A Nebraska person was eating with us.  They caught my eyes flipping up and back..zoning out. By the time we got back to the hotel, we all felt like a Mack truck had run over us several time.

It took me two days to thaw out when I finally reached home!

Susan, reporting in from the clinic journey!

PostHeaderIcon JR’s Journal – Challenge Day Event

JR the Tall
I took JR to the Challenge Day event today at Pine Dell. There were
auditors that were brand new wannabe horse owners. They fell deeply
in love with JR. After the event was over, they came back to the
arena barn aisle and just raved about him. A woman boarder at Pine
Dell was also in the audience. She is selling her arab horse and
getting a fox trotter. She cried and said “I wish you would sell him to
JR is sort of youngish/adorable with a playful streak.

But, when the ground events were over and I got on him…he was
lame! Jenny said that she thought he was a little out of line when
he trotted around on the ground, but no one else noticed it. I
suspect a puncture in his hoof, but couldn’t find it. I took him
home, got two kitchen trash bags and put them together, put epsom
salts and hot water in the bag. At the barn, I mixed a little cold
water and picked up JR’s foot and put it in the double plastic trash
bag. He ate his supper and I held the trash bag for 15 minutes.

Ya gotta love a horse like this!


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