Monday, March 30, 2009

Calamity got a Haircut and a Job

Calamity Jane. She loves attention, but can be full of spit and vinegar when she doesn't get her way. She's a little head strong and not afraid to go do her own thing--herd be damned. Calamity was born that way. I think she hit the ground on her feet, and she was kicking up her heels within minutes of birth. If she doesn't like her circumstances, she plays along, calculating her escape. It has happened more than once.

We have taken her everywhere since she was born--small trips, big trips. She has packed coolers with lunch, and camp gear all over creation since she turned one--all weight appropriate for her age. She usually doesn't mind and takes any noisy, clanky, flapping-in-the-breeze things we load on her back, willingly.

She's at that age to start saddle time with her. So, Saturday morning, I climbed on her back in the vacant field next door. Several times she tried to buck me off. I stayed on (she's not that talented,) but I began to wonder by her behavior if she was hating the training bit I was using. I changed to a more advanced bit and her whole attitude softened up at the hitching post.

Shoot! Lets go for a ride then, I think. I had all these plans to work her up slowly, try the arena first, get a good handle on her before going anywhere. But riding this close to home just ferments all kinds heartburn in all of my barn-sour buggars. Every animal I have is an angel on the trails, and a demon close to the farm. Maybe she'll be good with this new bit out on a trail somewhere, I contine to think.

She was...

I did go where I was least likely to fall on something painful. And I did take all the kids with me in case they needed to perform an extraction from the desert. But she was completely content to take me where ever I wanted to go out in Warner Valley. Good stops, good turns--she's almost neck reigning already. Smart little Calamity, she's like a kid with ADHD--just don't bore her with mindless tasks. Get her busy and she'll learn as she goes.