Wow what a day! We went to the fair. I got about4 1/2 hours of sleep last night, got up EARLY to get out of here on time. I tell you, hitching the trailer in the dark is a frustrating experience. Tonka mildly let me know that he did not want to go for a trailer ride today, since he had already done so for two days in a row before that. He just walked away, then stopped, but it was a clear enough communication. He definitely gets tomorrow off. And Monday I am riding, but not hauling. After voicing his slight objection, he loaded fine and we took off into the dawn. Stopped at my sisters and he had to get into an unfamiliar trailer in an unfamiliar position. He has always hauled in the front, this time was in the middle, and the step up on the trailer is high. No problem.
All sorts of good things were going on at the fair. Strollers, kids blowing noise makers, other horses in all states of mind, flapping flags and banners, bulls and other bovines, even a dead skin and bones for stink effect on the trail course. He didn't mind any of those things, but didn't like one particular garbage can. He found the clown barrel offensive too until I had him touch it and then he mentally moved on. He spent a lot of time tied up. I took him for a few walks, and then later when there was a lull in my sister and her kids' goings-on, we went for a ride around the parking area.
I was even persuaded to enter the trail class, but then while waiting in line realized it was a bad idea. Neither of us is ready, and I don't want to damage the tremendous trust that's building between us with each ride. I asked to show in-hand, and they said I could for no score, but had to wait for the other riders to all go through first. (I PAID, I think I should get to GO...) Eventually, after over two hours of waiting, I had my last big disappointment, thinking it would be our turn and then two kids showed up to ride through twice each, which would mean another half hour at least. I said forget it. So we did not compete or show in any way, but boy oh boy am I so happy with my horse! He stood around snoozing with me on his back like a pro. :) The only time he jumped was when a water truck came behind him and sprayed his hocks. Luckily I'd seen it coming and gotten off and moved him, just not quite far enough. He spun and faced it and walked on the wet dirt and went back to snoozing.
AND my little niece who has been so afraid of riding after some bad experiences, rode in the walk/trot against 8 other people, most of them adults, and got FIRST place. She got second in another one against two other kids. Riding my Coda, who shone like a star out there even though he's 29 years old and a little the worse for wear. (I'm really not happy about his weight, but my sister had to try some other feed regimens before doing what I told her was necessary for him, plus some additions of her own. GRR.) He was SO proud of himself and totally in his element. He's a pro. I can't believe someone threw him away! If you had an old horse who needed a little extra groceries but was a GREAT kids' show horse, WHY would you send him to a sale and only give the information "gelding" on his card? When he raised all your grandkids in the show ring? WHY? I am so very thankful there was someone there that day to buy him and pass him on to us.
I'm going to go be a zombie now until bedtime.