Sunday, October 26, 2014

All About The Feet

The handsome young Paint arcs his neck awkwardly against the bit. His head comes up, his eyes are big. His feet are stuck and he doesn’t know what to do.

I have just enough tension on the rein to let him know he needs to figure out a way to get relief but not so much as to freak him out and possibly end up upside down in a very bad way.

I wait. I am in no hurry. We are parking cars for the hayrack rides at the ranch and I am setting up situations to help this guy learn to move his feet while it’s quiet. Once the chips are down and we are sending cars this way, trucks that way, no ma’am, you pay the lady down at the barn I will just spend your money foolishly, there’s no time to teach only to do.

The outfit on the horse’s head does not improve our situation. The ranch used him as a wrangle horse most of the summer and the quick fix to the head tossing, locked up feet was to run a leather strap from his halter to his cinch in a makeshift tie down. It did keep anyone from getting hurt so that part was definitely successful.

“Don’t back  him up. The guy that owned him all his life said he might flip over if you try to back him up.”

I had felt that in him when I rode the Paint out in the hills to see if he’d be a parking candidate. A real good horse, I don’t have to ride long at all to know what I have. One that’s real bad, not going to ride him long either.

It’s the ones that land in the middle, kinda dicey but wait, what if I ask like this? How do you like that, and they say, yeah that might be okay. Those, I ride longer.

I rode Huey almost 45 minutes that first day. At the end, he was backing a few steps softly on a loose rein and I figured he’d be okay if we were careful.

Sometimes I think it does a horse no favor to get him really broke, soft to the hand and leg. Not if you are going to send him out to a world that often had the best intentions in the world when it comes to a horse, but  not the knowledge or ability to ride one that knows more than they do. Nobody knows what they don’t know until they know better.

This horse had some decent experiences back in his young life somewhere but had become very confused when the rules he knew changed without warning.

We decided I better ride that one, and we’d put my crew on less complicated horses.  Most people think, oh! Park  cars on horses! Fun, easy job. Nope. It’s not. It IS sometimes fun but it’s not easy and when you are parking 50 to 60 cars at a time in a tight space in the dark, no lines to guide them as they are in a rush to get to their party, it’s high end stressful for horse and rider alike.

So, here I am, heading up the hill to the terrace, our first parking area.  Huey is in his tie down and tom thumb bit. I know the owner, my friend, is thinking he’s keeping me safer with this rig. I am not in agreement but it’s his horse and I can work with what I have.

I have a magic bullet rant. Here’s a piece of that. Your issue is not your halter, your lead, your bit, whatever. The best tools for a job absolutely raise the odds of successfully completing the task and if you don’t have the skill to pound a nail with a toothpick, you better grab a hammer. If you are unhandy with the hammer, it’s not the nail’s fault if you smash your finger.

Tack fit does not fit in this rant. I have seen many nice horses get upset and downright dangerous over pinching bits, poorly fitting saddles and the like. Make sure your stuff fits your horse. I don’t really care at all if it fits you, until it fits your horse.

Here’s the test to my theory. Can I pound a nail with a tie down and a bit I really don’t like? Going to have to. I understand how the leverage works on a shank bit that is broken in the middle. There are about a hundred ways to use that thing wrong so it jabs the horse in the side of the face, his tongue, roof of his mouth. Then if he raises his head to escape the pain, there’s that tie down saying nope, stay here and take it big boy.

I pick up a rein, raising it cautiously along the big horse’s neck. I want him to feel it but not become afraid. He’s already afraid so this is delicate. I don’t care if he moves his feet while he searches out what he can do.

His neck arcs awkwardly, and here’s where we came in, gentle reader. I just sit and wait. It’s not impossible I would have put too much pressure there while I am also trying to figure things out and if he were to get upset, I know not to try to get through something bad to get to something good. I’d let him go and start over.

Also not impossible I wouldn’t send enough down the rein to mean anything to him and he’d just stand there. That’s tricky because sometimes what I think is just standing there is the horse trying to sort things out and me adding pressure right there can really mess things up. This stuff takes trial and error for a person where I am in my journey.

Peter, my teacher? He knows how much to send before he ever twitches a muscle. He’s human and might have to make an adjustment along the way too, but he’s the least human horse person I have seen and I’ve watched a few.

Huey sits there for a moment in that oddly bent position. I know he’s thinking about what comes next and I sure hope I have guessed right. A horse can get unhappy and come over on you in one quick moment when the mind and the feet are stuck. They don’t think they have anywhere else to go.

He begins to shift his weight and I release pressure. I could not care less where he is going, as long as it’s not up. He is trying and I am going to reward that all day long, build back a confidence in his rider to stay with him and not leave him in the clinches. Hugh, you can thank Royal T and Peter Campbell for that one.

I ask again, thinking to myself I’d really like that right hind to step under. It doesn’t take long at all and the foot goes where I am thinking it should.

After that, it was pretty much fun, games and good times for us. Huey learned he could operate on a soft feel and never touch that tie down.

I may or may not have made a point of backing him in half and full circles up there on that terrace in full view for the world to see. (“It changes a horse” says Peter and he is right as rain.)

Huey just gets softer and happier. As the day goes on, we do our part. It’s not a super hot heavy omigod here they come kind of a day. My daughter, Sarah, is working with me and that adds an untold measure of delight to the whole deal. She’s been on a horse maybe five times in the past ten years but she was a pretty decent hand as a kid and it’s coming back to her fast.

me and Sar tooShe always had the lightest hands. I had to work for mine! Me and SarSarah and the pali

Sarah and her palomino park the cars on one side, me and Huey sort off the trucks and SUV’s to park against the steeper hill on the other side. We do it with the biggest smile and soft happy footsteps.

Here’s Sarah, Rhonda and Jane who ended up on Huey as I took on yet another complicated Paint!

Getting ready


Here we are, getting ready to park the big pasture. There’s a rhyme, rhythm and reason to everything we do and it takes a game plan to get it done!Jane and HueyJane and Huey (we did later convince the owner things would go much smoother in a snaffle bit bridle and sans tie down. When it worked out, he grinned at me and said “See Terri, I told you we needed to change that bit!” I laughed and threatened him with a shovel full of horse manure . . .nice shot of Rhonda and Huey


Me and CiscoHere I am on Cisco, a horse I stepped up on for about five seconds last year when he first arrived at the ranch. He’d blown hard, squatted like a frog and I knew my best bet was step off while I still could. He’s seen a lot of life since then and was hands down the best car parking partner I have had to date.

 The Four HorsewomenThe Four Horsewomen! (We later replaced Sarah with Jess, and hopefully I’ll get some of the night time shots of these guys with their horses aglow with LED lights and glow sticks!)

This is why I ride with Peter Campbell. Yeah, it’s still all about him. What he gives me works not just for my horse there in the clinic setting but at home, on the trail, doing a job that doesn’t have a thing to do with horses.

I study hard when I am around the Campbell’s, I bring it home and work hard. I don’t have to be anywhere near a horse to be turning over in my head how I can better get along with one.  That learning sometimes also helps me with getting along with people, though that’s definitely a tougher nut to crack!

Thank you, Peter and Trina, too Smile

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Good or Better

I heard a long time ago the good is often the enemy of the best, or in my case, the better. There is such a joyous freedom in giving myself permission to learn, to throw out the idea that I “ought to know this stuff by now” in whatever direction I happen to be looking at the time.

Right now I am speaking of horsemanship but it sure does not have to be.

It’s one of the things that made this latest clinic that I rode in the best one of them yet. I was relaxed and at ease with the idea that I was there to gather whatever information was next accessible for me to digest. I wasn’t afraid of “messing up” or getting into trouble.  I understand I might not get things right, but I am better at not trying to go through something bad to get to something good. Better at understanding to take the try, set us up for a better result next time and just move on. That’s helped me in life more than you might know.

Peter said first thing Thursday morning that we needed to give ourselves permission to learn, that was a huge lightbulb for me. I settled into the theoretical saddle and got ready.

Day 3 listening to Peter

There was a troubled little Arab there and for once, it didn’t happen to be the one I was riding. This gelding had got real scared and his rider was scared too, and I don’t blame or judge either of them. Peter worked with them both and we got to see the kind of magic happen that I have come to expect when I ride his clinics.

Carly and her horse, making changes with Peter's helpPhoto collage courtesy of Karen Johnson

I watched changes. Peter worked with that horse first, on the ground and from the saddle. I watched that rider give herself permission to learn. I am not wanting to tell  her story, but I got to participate and then it becomes part of my story.

To help them with their fear, Peter had her pony the Arab off her gelding, and then stand by the rail. The rest of us were instructed that if we could safely ride our horses with flags we should get them.

Ride Royal with a flag? Once upon a time I would have laughed or cried at the thought. He and I were in such good space and I thought back to the trail ride with Christine and Corie when I used Christine’s shoofly, basically a rag on a stick to relieve my pony of the nattering creatures. He had glanced at it a couple of times, understood it was all good for  him and there was no issue.

How about now? I ride out to the stalls where my borrowed flag awaited. I figured I would find out on the way back to the arena if this were any kind of a good idea or now. I had to laugh when I met Colleen with Dervish there, having the same thought.

We were fine, the four of us. I have this warm glow in my heart as my horse can sort out and understand what is meant for him and what is just stuff going on in the background, even if the background is a flag inches away from him. He is also not dull to stimulation so that when I picked up that flag with intent, he could respond with respect instead of fear. That’s been a goal long time in coming.

The class rode along the rail and each of us approached the frightened horse in such a way as to not excite or move him, and we touched his back with the flag how Peter told us too. It mattered that we didn’t further upset him, we needed to be very conscious of our approach and able to handle our flag in such a way to help him make a calm change.

By day four, that gal was riding him in the H1 class and you wouldn’t know he’d been different than the rest of us. Just like me with Duke, Riata, now Royal and many others I have had the fortune to observe.

Carly and the ArabPhoto courtesy of Karen Johnson

We also did an exercise with her other horse, forming a circle and she rode past us keeping him in the circle using only her coiled rope. Royal got to experience that horse coming up on him, going past, at different rates of speed. I was proud my horse’s calm never waivered. It tells me what is out there for us.

day 3 helping Carly's horse

Back to being cows. Not naughty now, we are loping around the gathered cattle in pairs. The object is to keep our horses together on the circle. The inside rider has to work to keep their horse on the circle, not let them blow out and run into the outside horse who has to move quite a bit faster to keep the pace. If your horse can be a little sensitive to pressure, like mine, it’s quite a challenge. For different reasons, it was for most of us.

When it was my turn, the group was mostly paired up and Trina came forward to lope with us. I think the class thought my naughty cow miasma was going to roll over onto them as well. Trina wasn’t skeered Smile

First time around, I am on the outside and away we go. We didn’t mind having to pick up the pace and when Peter said the outside rider was going to have to “ride their horse” to keep up, we did just that. My game little horse set his ears back and moved!

Next turn, we are on the inside and that’s harder. She and her behemoth of a gelding kept us with us, and when Royal got a little worried at the close quarters and wanted to run through my leg, I checked him but her horse checked him first. It worked like it’s supposed to, Royal got back on track, never broke his stride in the meantime. It was a great exercise and I love that my horse stayed controllable and with me throughout.

Trina and I loping in pairs

My brain was not in the way of my being able to stay in the moment with my horse. I could ride up or down, whatever he needed, and he responded with me. Another goal VERY long in coming.

When it came time to work the actual cattle again on day four, we all had a much different experience. Most of the class could hold the cow for several turns, some looked downright talented. My goal was to try to stay out of the way and get correct turns.

Colleen and Dervish mirroring the cowDay 4 pushing spots

Realizing it’s my responsibility to be present where my horse is, work from where he is, and that I might not know that right away and have to do some things to figure it out is really freeing. I don’t blame my horse for getting upset, don’t get lost in “he does this or doesn’t do that.”

Release the blame, take responsibility, stay in the moment and work from where your horse is.

Day 3, Royal super relaxed

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Cows Part Deux

cows looking at us

We are trailing the cattle. Letting our horses hook on so they learn to shape themselves and stay with the cow. My horse tries a couple of times. “Don’t PULL on your horse!” I can hear it but I can’t stop myself from doing it.

High hands make for a high head . . . as seen below. In the red shirt are day 2 photos but unfortunately, that stayed with me.

Day 2 cows, my hands are in the way

day 2 high hands, high head I post this one to keep it real. Cow stopped, I slam on the brakes, Royal is the last to know.

Eventually I can stay out of Royal’s way enough he catches a piece of it, shapes to the cow and follows. If only I could have relaxed enough to put my hands down and trust my horse. That’s huge, you know. Trust.

Most of us in the cattle working clinic are just here to learn better horsemanship. A tiny few of us work with cattle as part of everyday life, another small more play with them in sport.

The rest of us? We don’t see a cow except the ones breathing fire in a nearby field. We are here to learn how to shape our horses, to ride them in a different type of environment, acquire a new skill.

It’s because Peter taught me how to get Royal to look at a thing he feared I was able to survive years two and three parking cars on him. Shaping his body as if we were mirroring a cow on lonely trail ride after trail ride helped prepare us both how to control his feet when he wanted to spin and bolt some other way.

Just as most of what Peter teaches in horsemanship applies to life, what he teaches us in cattle working applies to horsemanship in whatever endeavor we wish to pursue.

I am becoming aware of how much I pull on Royal’s mouth. It’s one of my very pet peeves when I am with a group of riders and someone tries to send their horse forward only to rock backward and pull them up the moment they try to comply. Here I find me; doing things I really hate to see in others. Go figure.

I am also becoming aware that what I was thinking of taking him on the corner (that means one rein operating a quarter but not necessarily to a stop) is pretty different from what I have actually been doing. Perception not the same as reality? You don’t say.

Getting it straight in my head maybe the first time ever how to move his hind in order for his front to come through, how to set the outside front foot over to make room for the hind. I know you guys have heard me talk about this stuff before, it just all fell into place in a rather magical way for us. We were ready.

Day 2 Foundation in the dressage saddle

Position for the transition. Again, not just for horses.

Backing in circles, half circles, spending the afternoon figuring out how to be a partner has affected a change in Royal and I both. It’s easier to get us thinking now. I ask for a foot whether it’s on the ground or in either saddle and it’s where I want it to be without a lot of static attached.

We did an exercise in which we proceeded down the rail, made a half circle, leg yielded to the rail and loped a small circle the other direction. Most of us have been trained to cue for the canter by putting back our outside leg. I have always hated that cue, felt awkward and off balance with it. Peter wants us to cue with both legs. If the horse is set up correctly to take the proper lead, has been gotten READY, then lope off on the right lead he will.

Again, things are to be done smoothly. You are not to drag your horse by the reins, not allow him to cut in or push through your leg. If the hind is set up correctly, the shoulder does not drop.

First time, I cue the way I always do. It’s a habit. Awkward, but we lope around in some semblance of a circle. We can do that.

I try to configure my body to be able to sit deep, leg yield and prepare to lope off. It takes some tries, mostly we do lope a circle, only once or twice did I get in Royal’s way enough to get him cross firing or on the wrong lead.

Finally I am ready. Both legs. I set them to my horse with vigor! Bam, he about leaps out from under me in surprise and we have a little gallop about. Okay, do less next time.

I prepare again. Less. I breathe the energy into my legs after a rather pretty leg yield and Royal lopes elegantly in a nice even circle.

What does this have to do with cows, you might ask? They were over there, waiting for us. All day.


I had the days mixed up in my earlier blog, the long day was the third day. I was having a pretty good time and an extra long day with Peter teaching is frosting on a really good cake.

When we finally get around to the cattle working class, I am still pretty happy about the whole two legged balanced loping circles thing.

We are not so good at cows. None of us. Peter tries again and again to help us not lose our cow back into the herd. A few of the riders can hold theirs for a couple turns, most of us not so much.

Peter can't watch anymoreEven Lollipop says she can’t see any more of this. She is sad for her brethren horses.

Finally, exasperated Peter sends the cows away. Uh oh, we have lost our cows . . .  He gathers the riders in group in the middle, selects me (rather spectacularly unhandy at this, speedily losing our cow) and a fellow who is one of the better hands. Wha?

A how and how not to exercise coming up, I wonder?

Peter explains as to how he is going to be the clinic rider, one of us will be the cow.

“Terri, you be the cow.” He says. (I do know there is nothing personal behind this, he just knows I can lope my horse and probably not die.)

Really? I look down at my spotted horse, over at the cattle . . . hmm, I can see the resemblance. A gleeful imp of naughtiness grows behind my eyes.

Peter will ride an inside circle around the group, keeping his “cow” from rejoining the herd. The other gentleman will be the hazer and prevent the cow from escaping off into the arena.

?Oh yeah? says the cow.

I do swear I heard Peter say “ok get ready, set and lope.” I swear upon all that is holy I thought that is what he said.

With a big, bovine grin on my face I set Royal into a spanking lope and off we go. I look back, they are left in the shadow of my cowy dust.

I suspicion they will soon be upon us and like any good cow who suspects capture, I pick up the pace. I click up Royal who is with me in joy. We sail about the group in a very merry chase all by our onesies, much to the amusement of my on looking herd.

“Okayyy, that’s enough.” As I ride by, Peter catches my eye, shaking his head. Knowing when it’s time to stop being a naughty cow is an important survival skill and we stop immediately.

Peter straightens his face but I can see the laughter in those eyes and Trina pointedly avoids looking at me, I am pretty sure we’d have busted out in giggles unbecoming to the moment . . .

We get back to business but ya know, if ya gotta be a cow, be a NAUGHTY cow!

my buddy

Monday, October 6, 2014

Takes a Lifetime

To learn a lifetime. Driving with my daughter the other day I was again reflecting on how much easier our relationship might have been had I known any handful of the things I know now. Sadness gripped me and then I thought of Peter saying “don’t punch yourself out for not being somewhere other than where you are right now.”

I looked over at the lovely young woman my daughter has become and I felt very grateful we have the relationship today that we have. It’s taken a lifetime for us both.

You guys know I have a rule about telling other people’s stories. I can’t really even when I want to. I am not inside their heads, I don’t know what they have overcome to get to whatever place they are at.

Here’s what I do know. I spent four days in the company of some very wonderful people. Without trying to fill in the background,  I am going to share some photos and maybe you can get a feel for the joy, the camaraderie, the incredible sense of purpose and accomplishment we shared.

Trouble one: we have several very good amateur photographers that grace us with their talents. Karen Johnson, Deb Johnson, Della Beach; Donny Chalufas, Wendy Wojewodski, Roxanne Hill, just to name a few. When I save ph0tos, I rarely remember to save who to credit them to, so here they are in a bunch.

Also, I didn’t save all the photos I wanted to. There are a whole lot more  but here is a smattering.

Trouble two: I always leave out very important people, so don’t feel bad if your photo doesn’t show up here!

All further disclaimers aside, here we go:

Here is one of my best friends in life, and also our Lincoln NE clinic host, Colleen Parmenter Hamer. She is riding Dervish, an Arabian used-to-be-a-stallion that she has trained and done a wonderful job with.

Colleen and Dervish

Colleen best pic everColleen and Dervish mirroring the cow



Here is Bob. This young man started riding a very few short years ago and has come far.



Cindy and Miley, really coming along

Happiness is when we can share our passions with our spouses. With her husband, Pat, on the right.

Cindy and MileyCindy and PatPat

Great shot of Karen Johnson, laughing with Peter, photog gets snapped!

Karen smiling with Peter Della Beach, Karen’s sisterKaren the photogDella


The Donny’s (best guys ever)

The Donny'sme and donny

Starr with her dazzling smile!


Happy Roxanne!


Stephanie, another glowing rider

Stephanie smile

Last but certainly not least . . .

The lovely . . .

Trina portraitTrina Campbell


And himself, having a little fun and good times on a great horse

Peter and Lollipop getting down


I hope you can gather from these photos some of how we felt during that four days. Yes, we work our behinds off. Many of our photos show us with brows wrinkled in concentration.

If it doesn’t challenge you, you won’t grow!

I am here to grow. There will be more about cows.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Cows part one

Fire breathing death belching demons straight from the bowels of Hades, were you to ask Royal T not all that very long ago. I used to dread seeing cattle off in the distance when we were road riding, especially if their fence line came anywhere close to any where we might end up.

Royal hated seeing them too. Neck would arch, head would grow skyward throwing unwelcome slack in my reins and fear in my heart.  His body would arc against my leg and I knew if the curious bunch came a’running down to see us as cows often will, I would probably see my demise reflected back from their big brown eyes.

This year’s Peter Campbell clinic filled fast. So fast, we had enough riders to schedule a third class. Peter uses cattle to teach horsemanship so we often see them the third and fourth days of our Horsemanship 1 class but here was an opportunity to ride four days in a row in the presence of the bovine. I sucked my stomach against my  spine, found some steel and called us in for the duration.

The horse that showed up at Peter’s clinic, Day 1 Foundation class was a soft gentle guy. A horse that wanted to be with me more than he wanted to be some other place. A horse I have been searching out in golden moments for the past four years.

Day 1 Foundation

When we added cows to the equation it was nothing compared to two years ago. Royal was so upset then as we came pounding in, late for the class and me on foot that Trina had to come hold him for me. He wouldn’t stand still enough to even attempt a flying mount, much less get on proper.

I rode with Trina that afternoon, and we got him relaxed enough to follow a steer on a loose rein. HUGE win for us! I still couldn’t get much done when we were in the line trying to keep the steer in the center of our two groups. It would give Royal a look and he’d be a’spinnin’ and a’whirlin’ out of the way allowing the steer a nice big breach in the line to come through at his pleasure.

I could not set his hip over an eighth, I got full on turns, hindquarter slinging out of control “slippery little bar of soap”. Couldn’t bring his front end through and stand, ask for one step, would get ten, until the last day and we finally got those things accomplished.

Couldn’t lope around even the riders in a bunch because the dreaded cattle were off to one side, and could not be ignored.

That was then, this was now.

The cows were worth a glance askance. I feel Royal’s ribs bulge against my leg as he siddled away from the scary smelly beasts, but I let my inside rein and leg present a barrier, and finally he is broke enough to not just blow through and leave the country. He is politely concerned.

Peter shows us the game on Lollipop, the little Palomino mare he’s riding in our last class. “She knows she’s pretty,” he says, and I can believe the classy thing does, indeed. He also says she is handier than Superman was and I did not believe that, until I saw it.

Getting after it

Our turn to move the steer.  My horse moves forward bravely, willing to take on the task. He’s no cowpony and he got scared when we got close.  I could hear Peter telling me to get to the fence, which would have put us effectively between the steer and his herd in the pen. It took me a bit but I figured it out on the return trip.

The steer didn’t really believe Royal could push him and was quite content to stop along the rail while it considered it’s options. I set Royal between the steer and the rail. No go. I gave the cow a solid kick with the toe of my boot. A few steps. C’mon dude, geez!

My mecate whizzes through the air, snap on the cow’s rear end. More steps. Peter says get my horse’s chest up against him and push him. All the while, Royal is gaining in courage. Once upon a time had I smacked something in front of him with my rope like that, he’d have been over and out.  Now, he sorts it, understands that is not meant for him. We push the steer.

Tex the steer finally takes us seriously and sets off. Down the fence, and then it dashes between the line of riders. We cut it off so it can’t get back to the herd and it scurries down the other end of the arena.

I forget what horse I am on and set my spurs to his sides. GO! GET THAT SUMMAGUN!! The horse under me surges forward, happy to respond. I remember belatedly it’s Royal and have a moment’s delight I am not on the ground.

We come around behind the steer and we bring that sucker up the rail. We aren’t stopping and we told him the truth. He was not stopping either.

Day 1 get that cow

Thing escapes us a little bit later after we’d got him back up to where we wanted him to go and Peter says no worries, we are good.

us, day 1 cheezin

It’s a complete total solid win as far as I am concerned. My Arabian/Saddlebred may never get on his belly and crawl to turn back a feisty critter. He WILL however, look at them and be broke enough to stay between my hands, legs and get a job done.

That part there is what I am here for. A horse that will stay between my hands and legs no matter what his instincts tell him to. That is the horse I can take places and do things with.

First thing that morning, Peter has us check in, he asks how we are doing and what we want to work on. I had decided to not say anything as he will know before I do what I am there for. He pauses at me. “You – what ‘s going on with yours?”

“Well he still gets a little excited in the trail ride environment when horses disappear in front of us.” It’s so much better but that’s still an issue so I might as well spit it out.

Peter makes reference as to how I should not pull on him with both reins when Royal is excited and right then I am thinking I don’t do that, not really . . .

He says I should take him on the corner, get him to move his hind . . . I am thinking, yeah, I do that. Works sometimes, sometimes he only grows more frantic . . .

Then he asks if I ever just let the horse go with his friends, how bad could that be rather than causing an event I might not be able to ride the end result of (he’s not talking to just me now but all of us. Don’t pick a fight you are not sure you can win.)

I think of the CTR when that first set of horses passed us by and the escalation was so fast and so furious I was pretty sure if it kept going, Royal T would be on the ride without me.

Peter says, heck how far can he go? Ocean on each side, right?

At the time I scowl a little on the inside. I don’t wanna go to any ocean. I want the damn thing to not freak out when he sees horses in the distance. I let him go every time that happens, I’ll be riding with people in Kansas who’s names I don’t even know.

Clinic’s end, I have a strategy in mind that might keep us from crossing any state lines . . . can’t wait to get some friends together to help me try it out . . .

And yes, there’s more about cows. Let’s just say, to begin with none of us were all that great.

Peter watching cattle work

None except Trina and she doesn’t count Smile

Trina and Peter on cows