Back in the Wednesday Groove

Just finished watching West Wing, which I’ve missed the last few weeks. I was beginning to be afraid the network was pulling it because they were afraid it might cause people to think, which is undesirable in times of war. But it was back tonight. And while blogging about a TV show might seem like the epitome of couch-potato geekiness, I can get away with it, because I also got back into my other Wednesday routine today, foxhunting, after missing it too much recently. After four hours in the saddle this afternoon, I think I’ve earned some sedentary time.

As I mentioned Sunday, Arthur lost one shoe hunting, and another shortly after returning home. A quick look at the forecast showed a 60% chance of rain on Wednesday, reducing the urgency of getting the shoes back on. But, being an incurable optimist, I left a message for the farrier saying it would be wonderful if I could get shoes just in case the weather turned nice.

Tuesday afternoon, the forecast shifted to a prediction that the rain would move through overnight, leaving sunshine and cooler temperatures on Wednesday afternoon. The cooler temperature was certainly welcome; the 70s that made ogling foxes on campus so pleasant on Monday and Tuesday would have been intolerable for chasing the furry four-legged foxes, especially on an unfit, unclipped horse. So with the break in the weather, all I needed was shoes. And that issue was resolved when I pulled in the driveway and saw the farrier’s truck at the barn. I love it when a plan comes together! I grabbed a six-pack of Dos Equis from the fridge and headed out to the barn. I think Brian prefers Corona, but I just can’t bring myself to buy that stuff when real horse piss is free, and he seemed happy enough with the Dos Equis.

So with beautiful weather, a freshly shod horse, and $500 worth of ignition/fuel injection work on the truck Tuesday, I was all set to go, even if my faithful bro was too swamped with farm work to go with me. We aren’t going to have many more days like this before the end of the season.

Considering the gorgeous weather, I was somewhat surprised at the small turnout. The first field consisted of me, two of my favorite blondes, and our field master. It didn’t take long for us to find a coyote and get into some good running. Arthur and I seemed to be communicating fairly well, as he jumped nicely for me all afternoon.

There was just one small bit of bad news. Earlier this week, it occurred to me that I hadn’t fallen at all this season (maybe because I’d had much less opportunity). I didn’t want to jinx myself this close to the end of the season, but then I broke the streak today, in a somewhat embarrassing incident. We were checking after a fairly long run, and had eased back to a walk, when he suddenly decided to shy at a stump. So, just walking along, boom, I was on the ground.

After a couple of hours of fairly strenuous hunting, as the hounds picked up another coyote and things heated up again, I decided it was time to give Arthur a break. It would be a shame to kill him with a few hunts left in the season. So I dropped back to join the hilltopping field, which was another elite group of three women. We moved back towards the trailers at a nice leisurely pace, cooling out the horses and finishing the flasks.

And, after such a wonderful day, and an evening of vegetating, the weather forecast for the rest of the week shows a typical Kentucky spring yo-yo pattern which suits me just perfectly. Back up into the 70s for the next two days, to optimize the sight-seeing at work, then back down into the 30s on Sunday for some ideal hunting weather. Life is sweet!

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