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[RC] B and C - Together Again - victoria a thompson

I've been hearing it for ages now, "When are you going to write more
Braveheart and Chickenshit stories?"  Well, until now there hasn't been
anything worth writing about (or the 'creative juices' just weren't able
to flow).  But now, finally, I feel the urge to share.  

Between graduate school, student teaching, being sick as a dog, breaking
my foot (although I was up on the horse after 3 days), working, and not
having a saddle that fit (I have a ReactorPanel now) the Cadillac's and
my riding adventures have been greatly curtailed since last September. 
The Divine Miss Em (the Jeep) is spending time with her boyfriend - soon
to be a long distance relationship, so our schleps have been with the
Rubberband.  As Braveheart had been preparing him for his first LD we
haven't done too much schlepping together.

Los Cinquentos Anos was the Rubberband's (RB) first foray into endurance
riding, and I went along mainly to pick up the pieces in case something
went awry.  I also went along to volunteer my services to ride management
wherever they might need me.  Now, I haven't been 'up to par' lately as
far as my abilities are concerned.  Enough to say that some people may
have been alarmed to see me.  Suffice it to say I assured people that I
was no longer sick, I was not on any kind of medication and I was in
complete control of my faculties.  While this story isn't about Los
Cinquentos Anos I just needed to be able to say I satisfactorily redeemed
myself, salvaged my reputation and my dignity.  

The Rubberband did a wonderful job, completing 30-ish with plenty of
miles left in him.  The vets were impressed, Braveheart was beaming, and
RB came away with a whole different attitude that was noticeable to
everyone back at the barn - sort of a 'today I am a man' type of look.  A
quiet dignity as opposed to a 'oh yeah, I'm hot, look at me' type of
attitude.  Really nice.

RB was feeling so good Braveheart took him to Cuyama the following
weekend for another 25.  I had to stay home because my parents were
coming, and my mother is one of those anal retentive neat freaks, so I
had to sanitize my house.  I anxiously awaited Braveheart's return to
hear of her adventure.  Apparently RB was a real ass---- for about 10
miles and then settled down.  Again she came in 30-ish with plenty of
horse left over.  RB tied for LD BC.  Braveheart, however, was exhausted
from the heat - not used to it yet - and needed rehydration and sleep. 
We went to Pat's Kitchen and gabbed about the race over sandwiches and
iced tea.  While Braveheart was pleased with RB's BC she was pissed at
his behavior for the first 10 miles.  Off to home she went.  RB got the
week off to munch and graze and laze about.

In the meanwhile, I had the vet out to look at the Cadillac.  While her
new ReactorPanel saddle has made a big difference in her way of going and
her attitude, she hasn't offered to trot down a hill in a couple of
years, she still wasn't right.  I've known her hocks were sore for a long
time, and her front feet had been bothering her, but the feet had been
taken care of and only one hock was still bothersome.  Still, the time
had come to take another step, she's 14 after all and old age tends to
creep up on the big horses faster than the little ones (don't write back
telling me about your 5 year old, 14.2, 600 lb Arab being diagnosed with
ringbone, we're talking in general here).  The diagnosis was ringbone in
the front and back, and hock spurs.  The one hock has fused and isn't
bothering her.  The other hock will take 2-4 years to fuse.  Patience is
the best course for the hock, and no tight turns (spins).  Well, I never
made her do the spins anyway, so I guess I really don't have to alter my
riding practices.  We started her on Isoxsuprine - twice a day for 2
weeks, then once a day.  I was told that in about 2 weeks I'd notice a
definite difference in her way of going.  Two weeks Hell!  Two doses! 
She and I went for a little schlep and she asked to trot.  I thought
she'd do the slow putz she's been doing for awhile now, but she kicked
into her endurance trot and flew!  We were smokin' (Cadillac smoke, not
RB or Jeep smoke).  She felt so good I wanted to cry.  I can only imagine
what she will be like after 2 weeks.  I have no intention of using her
for anything more than just trail riding, but just knowing that she is
comfortable and wants to canter and trot again puts a whole new outlook
on our schleps.

So, a week of rest for RB and a week of Isoxsuprine for the Cadillac. 
The phone rings.  Braveheart say's, "So, you want to go for a schlep?" 
My mind is saying, "That's a stupid question,"  but I was able to blurt
out, "Yes," before my mind could interfere with my mouth.  

Stay tuned.  Part II is coming up (after my rump gets time off from
sitting in this chair!).

As always, if you don't believe this story is true, go ask that blind
man, he saw it too.


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