Originally I would have headed home by way of Louisville, but one of our adjusters hit a deer, and I needed to detour the other direction and drop one of my supervisors off in Madisonville to get the new vehicle. In the meantime, I had contacted someone I met at the 2008 EMM - Greg Reynolds. He competed in 2007 and 2008 EMM. I found out he has two mares he is training for the Gatorland Makeover, and I wanted to pay him a visit. We did better than that - he and his wife invited me to stay the night at their house, so after dropping off the supervisor (and catching my 2nd wind the minute we passed into the Central time zone) I spoke to Greg and confirmed I would be there.
Greg is one of those people who really left a great impression with Brian and I both. Brian was excited I was going to get to visit!
Here is the bonus - that morning Greg asked if I needed to head home right away, or did I want to go ride? I will admit I was quite ancey to get home - but I wanted to ride! I had not smelled a horse in 3 weeks! :-)
It had rained hard that night, but I did not know it. I slept sooooo good! I did not know about riding in the mud, but Greg said "It is just mud." So away we went. The other horses were running around us having a grand time, and Dixie, my girl, wanted to play too. It was at this moment I realized that I was not very brave! After my face plant off Tripp, I thought I was fine, but with the other horses running around, and that is what got Tripp started along with the strong winds, I realized how nervous I was. We still rode, and I just moved Dixie around one direction and the next. I was also worried about ruining her training....isn't that crazy to worry about that? Greg reminded me that it is good for her to have other people ride her.
We ended up in another field while the other horses stayed in the front field. That helped, but I still realized that I am a big chicken, and I don't take risks. Part of it might be because I was worried about messing up Dixie, part of it was I did not want to fall off! Ha ha! There were lots of limbs down, and Greg and Mustang Sally would go crashing thru them while I would take the easy way around. I eventually started going thru some of the fallen branches, but not as good as Greg was! Greg is an excellent rider and gave me several tips on little things I was doing and not doing, along with compliments about my riding, which made me feel good. I really wish I could have hung around there all day to have a horse play day! It was fun, the company was great, and I learned new things!
Dixie has quite a story: Greg and a friend went to Land Between the Lakes to ride. The saddle slid sideways and the other person slipped off, Dixie got scared and took off. Poor Dixie was gone for several days with the saddle hanging off her side. After several trips out there riding to try and find her, Greg found out that someone had finally found her and took her to his place. That is a story itself - but the good part is Greg got her back, and she is fine. Greg was just sick that she was gone out there - plus the saddle being on her like that. I was the first person who rode her since that ordeal, and she did GREAT! Personally, I think she did so good because Greg had done such a good job with her training and she trusts him.
Here is Greg with Dixie (I rode her) and Mustang Sally.
After our ride, we played around and I was sliding off Dixie's butt while holding on to the gate rail - and hoping I would not slip off! Ha ha! We laughed so hard - and I had to do this several times before Greg got the picture.
Here are Greg's Gatorland mares. They had horrible ice storms in Kentucky (which is why I was there working) so he and his wife thought it appropriate to name them Ice and Storm. Both are very pretty mares. Storm, the bigger of the two, really reminds me of one of my TIP horses, Vegas. They are built a lot a like.
Here are his other horses, along with Ice and Storm running around having fun with them. Dusty is the light one, and the sorrel is Charlie Horse.
Thanks Greg and Stephanie for your hospitality!
Until we meet again....
Karen, and hopefully Brian next time!