Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Finally- something I can sink my teeth into.

First of all, thanks for your encouraging words about my recent disaster post. I have warmed up and dried out and I see that things aren't really so bad...


I have gotten another job ( in addition to the auction house) and it is at another auction house  just across the Bay. It is an auction house that specializes in firearms, mostly antique but modern too, and weapons and western artifacts. I am super excited! Of course I'll have to go into San Francisco three days a week, but it is something I know, I'm good at and will enjoy.

So I can continue torturing myself, my friends and my family by going to those horse shows on Desi!

Monday, March 28, 2011

A Good Time was Had By All... nearly....

I'm finally recovered enough to write this post!
Sorry the pictures are in weird order- I'm still just too tired to figure them out.
Thursday started out raining- actually it poured! And the wind blew. And it was cold and muddy.  But we had paid our entries so we packed up our gear, our horses and pulled on our big girl panties. We headed out early and boy it is a good thing we did. We were able to get good places for our RVs and get the horses into the stalls.

We waited and waited and waited for the rain to stop...... but it didn't.
Show management decided to condense the show and put all the classes into the two indoor arenas. Of course that meant that the first day all classes were double judged and we only showed for two days instead of three. I hate double judged because if you have a bad day, you have it with TWO judges eyes on you. Of course the warm up area was also crowded into one arena- the smaller of the two, as the reining classes and their warm-up were happening on Friday and Saturday in the bigger main arena.

 I finally couldn't wait any longer for the rain to stop so  I saddled Desi up and went into the small arena to ride.I knew it was going to be a battle, there were lots of horses, rain, wind and bleachers on one side- a busy road on the other. I had to get him into the arena so he would be at least a little acclimated on Friday when we were going to show.  It took a long time but he finally calmed down and began listening and after a few hours I put him away.
Next day (Friday) was show day. I got up at 5, fed and saddled and went into the warm up. Another wild ride, but I got him around.
Then I trudged through the rain back to the RV and gussied myself up.
Went back into the warm up where we stayed for another two hours before our turn to show.(Point being that we were in that arena a long time!) 

Early Warm up

now we were in the 'trail' half of the arena and the judges were sitting in a table right on the rail with two big silver heaters flanking them.
All went well at the first obstacle. And the second and most of the third and fourth obstacles, but as he turned the corner he saw the judges and the heaters -
Up went his head and he stopped dead in his tracks to look at them. I spurred him forward through our pattern until it came time to jog past the judges and up to the gate. But Desi didn't want to jog past them, he shied and balked and bent. He tried to stop,he threw his head and shook his neck. We got to and through the gate obstacle, barely, finished the pattern and left the building.

 I have to tell you that my score with those two judges was not only the worst score we have ever had with out being disqualified- it was the worst score I have ever SEEN!

Desi was worn out, so he took a nap.

This is Deniserita's Horse Sonny's Guns Array.
He had his jammies on for the night too.

I didn't have to show on Saturday, but I got up early, saddled and rode Desi anyway. He bucked and was broncy, but I finally got him calmed and working before I put him away.
Deniserita and Lil Mama showed on Saturday. It was still raining. They warmed up and both horses were a little 'big'. But even though Sonny isn't a veteran, he remained under control even in that crazy warm up and through the rain. Sonny placed well in her three classes. Lil Mama was in two classes and she did well too, marking fifth both times under both judges.

This is Kiki the barn mascot. He belongs to D's trainer Jackie. What a good dog Kiki is- and she's smart too! Does tricks that I didn't get pictures of.

It was Denise's Birthday on Saturday too. Her Stud Spud had the announcer give her Birthday wishes when she was still in the line up!  Some of her other friends bought her a cool Birthday hat. It had flashing green lights! She wore it over her English Helmet all day long.

I also met another of Jackie's customers. ( Jackie is Deniserita's trainer)  "Yoko' bought the cute little mare that I saw last year-called Nother One.'Yoko' calls her Ava. Nother did a great job in her class, long sweepy stride, ears up, going along like she had done it forever.( She's three and has never had an English saddle on before Saturday!) Nother placed first and second in her class!

To ease my disappointment about showing poorly we decided to go shopping. I bought earrings and a new burnt orange pad. Denesirita bought Lil Mama a new 'used' Hunt coat and shirt. Yoko bought a pair of brown suede chaps.
Yoko tried on a cute brown and white leather jacket. It fit her nicely, but not perfect. For the money- you want perfect!

'Yoko' and the jacket.

Dale Chavez was there with lots of beautiful saddles. This one had loads of crystals. Every piece of silver was encrusted with them!

This saddle was beautiful too. All the black on it is really 'tarnished' antiqued silver. The pattern is called Morning Glory. Can you imagine putting these saddles on your horse!

This shirt was just so awful I had to get a picture of it! Peace Out!

It rained so hard that the ditch behind my RV flooded. It was up to within ten feet of my RV, and the water was nearly 3 feet deep! It finally receded on Saturday. 

The sun came out for a few moments Sat afternoon. Then it rained some more.
Denesirita and Lil Mama trotted between the rain drops, back and forth from my RV to hers and fixed us a scrumptious dinner. We consumed some adult beverages and hit the hay early.
This is the only picture of me in the arena. P'rolly a good thing.

Nother Ava

On Sunday I got up at 5 and didn't even feed. I saddled up and went to the arena. I was determined that Desi was not going to even look at the judges or the heaters. It was not a pleasant ride. He bucked and reared and acted like a total jerk. I lined him out and we loped around and around for nearly an hour. Finally he decided to give up and give in. We rode around a little more and as the morning came we headed back to the barn. I was pretty confident that he would be alright in the class.
Show management threw us a curve ball. They decided to have the Trail classes in the bigger arena and they had sectioned the arena off into three parts.  Western Pleasure and English classes were at the 'far' end, the area in the middle was for 'waiting' and the Trail was held at the 'near' end.
The big arena has bleachers on one side, all the vendors with their tent awnings and peoples heads just visible over the top was on the other side. Plus at the 'trail end' was a raised lobby with umbrellas and people leaning and walking and shopping along it.

I scratched the class.

I had spent all morning just getting to listen and not look at one scary object. Now here was a plethora of scary stuff. I think I did the right thing. If he had buggered out on me in there it wouldn't have been a good thing. I would have had to fight him all over again.
I wasn't in the running for a buckle so ....
This way at least we ended on a positive note. Our early morning 'training' session went my way, not his.

I know he should just go where he is suppose to go and do what he is suppose to do and listen to just me.
But he doesn't.
I was VERY disappointed and it was hard not to show it. Thankfully my daughter and my friends are super supportive. It made my disappointment bearable.

The Sunday show was great for Lil Mama and Denesirita and Yoko. They all placed high enough in their classes to win buckles! Hurray for all of them!
They worked hard for those buckles and they deserved them.

Denise's Birthday Hat
So even though we were damp, soggy and cold and my big girl panties were a bit bunched, the trip was a success and a good time was had by all! 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

This Beauty Queen was no sissy.

I heard just today about the 25 year old Beauty Queen that fatally killed an intruder in her home with her PINK GUN.
The gun was a gift from her fiance.
The intruder was a convicted felon with a long history of burglery and other assorted crimes.

The intruder knocked on the door at 3 AM. The BQ answered the door where upon the intruder attacked
her and tried to drag her upstairs.

The fiance heard the scuffle and jumped on the intruder, giving the BQ enough time to scramble away , get her gun and shoot the guy five times.
Why only five?
That was all the bullets that were in the gun!

The BQ and her beau believe that the man had been watching them,  working as a pizza delivery man and had targeted them to rob because they are wealthy.

 The BQ and her boy friend made a few mistakes.
Maybe when they buy pizza they shouldn't use $100 bills to pay.
Maybe they shouldn't answer the door at 3 AM - or at least not without the gun in her hand.

But she did do one thing right- she kept firing until the bastard was pushin' up daisies.

I'll bet that guy didn't think that a 25 year old Beauty Queen would be carrying a gun- pink or otherwise!
You can read the whole story here.

I just can't make this stuff up!!

Hell AND High Water

Today is the day....

Of course it is raining cats and dogs, pitchforks, golf ball sized drops and every other metaphor you could come up with. Plus it is windy!

But we are still on our way! Wish us luck!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

About the clipping and the mane thing...

I clip Desi's mane for two reasons. First-  his mane is dense and thick, it does not lay prettily on his neck, which has a tendency to be a little thick around his throatlatch anyway.

Second- He rubs it off in the middle of his neck- always, No matter what I do. He will get down on his knees to reach under the fence for a tiny tidbit of grass and rub his mane off. Or he will stick his head through the pipe panels and rub it off. It looks awful!

And D- I'm lazy. It is easier and most efficient to buzz it, it looks great makes his neck look more graceful and no one really even notices.

I usually wear just a tank top and a long sleeve sweatshirt to clip. Then when I come in the back door I strip it all off into the machine to wash all that hair away. Of course it is into the shower for me too. But it always seems like I have a few cribbets of hairs stuck somewhere in the corner of my eye or lashes. Still- I do like the way he looks with a roached mane!

I think everyone should do it too!

A Milestone.

Hey everyone, I just looked at my stats and discovered that I have posted my opinion 300 times!


Actually those that know me are right now shaking their heads and saying something like : Only three hundred opinions... Sheesh.. who put a muzzle on HER!?"

Thanks to any and all followers. You have become like BFFs to me- except we don't go out drinking or to the movies together. And I have never picked one of you up at the bus station nor have we drunk dialed each other. And I don't know the color of many of your living rooms or kitchens.

BUT- I know your innermost thoughts and fears- rejoice in your triumphs and cry over your failures.

So there is still some learning to do and opinions left to give....

I hope to be with you for at least 300 more!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Voila! Sort of...

It poured all day yesterday, but today the wind and rain died down a little. I rushed to the barn to do the clipping thing.

This is the before picture. You can see I did his legs already.

See his zebra like mane standing up? His way fuzzy ears? Hairy muzzle...

This is the after picture. His ears and face are nicely clipped. His mane is shaved to the skin. I like to leave his forelock alone, but I did  shape it a little bit(underneath) so when I put a rubber band in it, it will lay flat.

Here is is whole body. See all the hair on the barn floor! Shaved his feet and all his white parts ( and the hair on his sheath too!) He is still hairy, but at least his silhouette will look less fuzzy - and at least it looks like I tried! Tail still needs washing, but what the heck... it's going to rain like crazy anyway!


And on a different subject-

Remember this cute little guy? This was Captain Tripps at three weeks old.

Here he is today at 11 months old.

He's such a handsome boy!

Friday, March 18, 2011

For all the writers out there-

Check out the two new blogs on my bloglist remuda- Copyblogger and Karen S Elliotts Blog. They are both chock full of tips, information and encouragement for all. I feel like staying up all night to read through their blogs and then stay up all day tomorrow finishing that novel I've been stuck on.
I know a good percent of you out there are writers also so this is a spring time gift for you.

Go here and you can thank me later


Day six..

Though yesterday was sunny and warm- today it is raining again and cold. The wind is blowing and my hubby swears that there has been a tornado alert for San Francisco. ( I just think he didn't want me and the girls to go there tonight) So since I couldn't ride today, I decided to go out and try to finish clipping.

 The wind and the rain had nearly flooded the roads, but I got to the barn about 10:30. I'm thinking, 'OK, so it's wet- I'll just close the barn doors, turn up the radio and have myself a grand old time clipping Desi's mane and face.'


The girl that lives over the barn is moving back to Florida- and the movers were there doing what they do- move stuff.
Big heavy stuff....
....Big and heavy and scary looking stuff....
.........Big and heavy and scary looking stuff down the two flights of wooden stairs that end at the barn door.
So when I get there I saw the truck. It looked like it was nearly full. Ok- no big deal.

WRONG again.

 I got Desi out of his soggy pen, took off his muddy blanket and tied him inside the barn,just as one of the workers walked through the half open door carrying a big flattened moving box and tape gun. Without a word he starts flapping the box around, and rolling the tape gun -the tape screeching off the machine as they are want to do. 
I asked him to stop until I got my horse turned to face him- which he did.
Desi snorted and tensed, but  I kept talking to him and he was okay.
Bam bam bambambambambam
Desi -bless his lil pea pickin heart- started jumping straight up and down. He didn't pull back, thank goodness- the floor is cement and he might have slipped and fallen. He just jumped straight UP and then down- UP and then down. His little eyes were bugging out of his head as he goggled the big white mattress that suddenly appeared at the barn door.
So that's when I started thinking that I should have figured the movers weren't done and I was seriously questioning my powers of observation.
And I decided I could either put Des away and come back later  (no chance),
I could use this as a desensitizing tool and work through it. 

 I started rubbing on Desi's favorite itchy spot, and talking low and easy. He quit jumping, and then he sighed and relaxed , his body language saying... Well.Ma, if you aren't bothered I guess I won't be bothered either.
I groomed  for about 45 minutes before giving him a cookie and putting him away.
Needless to say I didn't get the mane clipped today- but I feel I did accomplish something; we built a little trust, had a little adventure and no one was maimed in the process.
Suppose to rain again tomorrow- I wonder what other challenges lay in store?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The countdown begins!

Seven days and counting.
Seven days to turn this hairy brumbie into a show horse.

This is Bob in his paddock- he hasn't been clipped, his mane is long and his whiskers are still whiskery~
First things first. This is the hardest thing to do-obviously. Bob turns into a giraffe~
Then he wants to take the clippers away.

Lil Mama finally gets an ear, and swipes it quickly.
Then his legs get done.
I'll have more pictures of Bob when she is all done. It takes a day or two!

This crazy guy had his legs done yesterday, and since it was finally sunny today- and likely to rain in monsoon fashion the whole of next week- I opted to ride today.
I'll have pictures of his transformation as it goes along too.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Century Club

Mary Grace Davidson has done something that I have always aspired to do- and I didn't even know it!
At the age of 81 she is the 6th person in California to join the Century Club.

The Century Club is achieved by adding up the age of the horse and the rider. You'd have to be at least 75 and your horse 25 to make it- or any numerical equation thereof.
Read about Mary Grace Davidson in our local newspaper here:

Unfortunately this is only recognized in the Dressage Community! I say that we- as horsemen and women- should acknowledge the Century Club in all aspects of riding. I know of a few people that would have qualified already- My father included.
In the small community that I live in, you usually hear about other horsemen. ( I use that term to mean all equestrians) I have never heard of or met Ms. Davidson, but I sure would like to. Her achievement is spectacular. The last horsewoman I met close to that age was 92 years young and her name was Dorothy. She was still riding in the NOTRA ( National Old Time Rodeo Association) Barrel racing event AND riding as the NOTRA Queen. I believe that she passed away five years ago, in a fall from her horse.

Good for you Mary Grace Davidson! We should all live as long and as well!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Auction Marathon complete!

I never seem to be able to get photos of the Gallery items! Too bad too, because they are usually even cooler than the stuff in the Annex. This month we had the usual Estate Auction plus Monday we had an Ethno-auction. Jewelry, pottery, rugs, statues, all places like Africa, New Guinea, India, Pakistan, Mexico and even some Native American stuff. I had a very hard time not bidding on the two squash blossom necklaces or the vintage Native American rugs or the very cool Navajo Saddle blankets.( keep thinking horse show horse show!) 
Here is the beginning of the last day of auction number four inside the Annex. All the stuff in the foreground was sold between 10 AM and 5 PM. Today I was there helping people gather the stuff they had bought to take it home ( or to their stores). Here are a few of the things that I was able to get pictures of- of course it is all cool!

This is an African Sable. It was in a full floor mount and had come from a small museum. We have several taxidermy mounts that are coming up for auction soon. Someone told me that this animal is extinct in the wild now. This one undoubtedly was taken quite a while ago, but he was as beautiful today as ever. Who ever had him before treasured him and the others. This went for $ 950. a bargain price considering what someone had to pay to go to Africa, take him, then have him immortalized.
PS- dig the drop front desk behind him!

This couch was all leather except for the downy feather soft cushions. It was a dream to sit on ,

( not that I had ANY time to be 'asittin') . Price hammered down at $250. I almost put a bid in for myself- but my boss bought it! And I knew he wanted it- in my book it is bad form to bid against your boss until you have been on his payroll for a year or so!

This genuine leather couch and chair were a weird kind of melted chocolate color. They weren't as comfy as the other couch, but they were in great shape. The couch was 6 feet long. It went for.....drum roll.....$20.00!

Here is another taxidermy mount of a big horn sheep. It was a small one, and had a cute little punam ( face) the final bid was $1000- and it was not accepted. The owner wanted more for it. It was a full body mount, standing on a rock with lichen moss. Probably weighed 200 lbs. Just as well it didn't sell- that way I didn't have to move it!
We also had a heartbeest, a fallow red deer, a caribou, a musk ox rug, and some antelope head mounts.
I had a tour of the back three bays where they store stuff today. There are two cape buffalo, a huge musk ox head and some more antelope. Also there is an old singletree, and the corresponding shafts, some old harness, two very nice old and hand plaited bosals, a hand braided horsehair McCarty, an old sweet iron bit, three kids leather saddles, an Olsen-Nolte from about 1950, two bear trap saddles from the turn of the last century, one with bucking rolls that look ancient, a pair of very cool Tapaderos,and amazing Navajo rug, with black grey and red storm pattern ( I think it is a Ganado). Am I excited?

Finally, here is one of my new friends, J. He's vera, vera' cool! I like working with him, his dry sense of humor goes along well with my sarcasm and bouncy attitude!
This next week I may have some exciting news about working with a third auction house in San Francisco. They have called me and I am going over sometime next week to check things out. Fingers crossed!

And even though it is a little sprinkley- tomorrow I am pulling Desi out of his little pen and start warming him up for the big show. Deneserita the Unpaid Ranch Slave is doing a show at the same showgrounds this week called Back to Basics. It is a split combined show, which means she shows on Friday and Sunday only, usually it is double judged. I can't wait to hear from her tomorrow to see how she and the GJA have fared!