Friday, March 30, 2012

I Get on a Horse and Sherm Gets Pretty

Today was a horse day again for the first time in a long time.  I've let other things get between me and my equine time quite a bit these last few weeks; the usual laundry list of things-- work, family commitments, wintertime airborne illnesses, etc.  Of late, I have had a good bout of tendinitis in my right elbow, which has manifested in elbow pain, shoulder pain, wrist pain, neck pain... you know, the usual compensatory shift that takes place when one joint goes down... they all start hurting sooner or later.

But this pain has been a real nuisance just as we hit shedding season-- using a shedding blade and or curry on the beasties has been excruciating, and so, frankly, I've just not done it.  The thought of going through the entire grooming and tacking routine and then having enough arm strength left to actually hold the reins on a frisky spring Morgan?  Oy, fuggetaboutit.

But today I forged ahead and did it, getting in a good depilation on Uncle Celby; he was half the pony after the grooming that he was before it!  We had a nice ride, and I'm sure I'll be sore in the loins tomorrow, as we did quite a bit of toodling around without stirrups.  My legs were certainly longer after the ride than before.

I discovered late in the afternoon that my wrist/elbow/shoulder/neck didn't hurt any more after two hours of work on Celby than they had any other day this week, so I forged ahead and grabbed Sherman for a little beauty session.  The pictures I posted on Wednesday are sitting there, showing him at his scraggly, shedding winter coat, long goat hair worst.  Tendinitis be damned, it's time to get the boy pretty again.

So I got him out, and what a pisser for grooming.  Every other horse in the barn leans into the grooming this time of year, just begging to have the itchies addressed.  Sherman, well, he has different ideas.  He's a swinging baboon in the cross ties, and cannot stand still...

Winter coat, 4" of tail, various whiskers
...until I start the clippers.  The minute the electric clippers go on, he listens attentively and looks at them longingly.  Apply them to his muzzle, and he drops in to an instant coma.  For no reason known to man, he is sedated, soothed, and satisfied by the buzz of the clippers on his muzzle, at the edge of his folded ears, along his jawline, down his fetlocks... the boy just can't get enough clippering.  He sometimes zigs when he shouldn't, and ends up with a nick or woobity spot here or there in his coat, but not because he's jerking away, rather because he's leaning too deliciously into the clippers and they dig deeper than I meant them to.

Stop clippering, go back to a brush or a curry?  Wigglebomb.  Start the clippers again?  Sleeping baby.  It's fascinating.
I swear he's asking me to roach his mane...

And my right arm is feeling like all this non-mucking/non-water-bucket-hauling work was good for it today, so maybe I'll give that some thought...  

Just a few stray whiskers...

Yes, yes I am handsome!

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