So, rather shockingly, I realized I have actually managed a at-least-one-post-per-month streak on this blog since August of 2011…and that a week out from the end of June, I was in danger of breaking that streak.

I just haven’t had much to blog about.

It’s been hot here…although that’s not really a newsflash, this is summer in Arizona after all. Rather amusingly, the weather “forecasters” have been doing all kinds of hand-wringing predictions of “unusually high heat waves” (no, actually, we regularly hit 115° here in June, thanks), practically salivating over the idea of us “hitting new record temps”…and then it’ll fall two to three degrees short of what they’re predicting.

(Yes, mentally, there’s a big difference between 115° and 111°.)

So when it’s this hot, I really don’t ride. Even the Go Pony prefers to hang out in her shaded stall with her fan, and the barn owner who goes through a couple times a day and sprays them with the hose, and turnout at night when the sun doesn’t bake them.

Also not too inclined to get the running miles in. I try to be up between 4:30 and 5 in the morning to get out the door with the dogs while the weather is quasi-passable (85° and the sun isn’t up high enough to start cooking us yet) but even then, it’s hard to get more than a couple of miles in.

This is called summer hibernation, and it happens pretty much every year. It makes for good endurance heat conditioning, if you have certain plans on the ride calendar that call for heat conditioning…but if not, it’s a really good excuse to stay inside, hug the air conditioning, and dream of when it was cold enough to justify wearing more clothing than just running shorts and a tank top.


got to head up to Zion, and slightly cooler temperatures, earlier in the month

History Made

American Pharoah won the Triple Crown today. 37 years since the last Triple Crown winner.

I’d not yet experienced a Triple Crown winner in my lifetime…born in the decade after the Triple Crown winners of the 1970s. It’s something I’ve followed and hoped for ever since I figured out what horse racing was…Silver Charm’s bid for the Triple Crown in 1997 was the first one I remember actively following.

An extraordinary horse and an extraordinary accomplishment. History in the making.

How to Start 2013

My morning: Wake up. Realize the forecasters were right and it did get below freezing overnight. Annual reminder of just how cold 29* really is. Realize that there is no way the pony will be happy to get out in this weather. Luxuriate around the house until noon time, the sun is bright, and it is over 50* out. Then go down to the barn.
A horse friend once shared one of her superstitions with me: “Whatever you do on New Year’s Day is what you’ll spend a lot of time doing the rest of the year.”

Read between the lines: Any excuse is a good one to saddle up and ride, right? For years, we had a tradition of riding on New Year’s Day, with a potluck gathering at the trailhead with friends afterwards.

Maybe it wasn’t the long-ride-and-expansive-spread of yore, but I did ride today.

And I’ve got the tights to prove it:

Full-seat tights. Great for bareback riding.
Not so great for staying clean.

I’ve been taking it pretty easy with the pony, sticking with just bareback for now in an attempt to ascertain whether or not my saddle is the cause of her mysterious, tripping-out-on-one-hind-leg incidents that have been occurring since late summer-ish. 

Always happy to get out, even if it’s a short ride.

And I came bearing the last of the seasonal treats: leftover peppermints from some of my holiday baking. Mimi loves peppermints. They’re probably her favorite treat ever. Just a crinkle of the plastic wrapper and she will mug you endlessly.
Peppermint kisses!!!

“More peppermints for the cute pony, please?”

I love this pony. It’s hard to believe she’s going to be 20 years old this year.

Herding me back out to the pasture.

Looking forward to a bright 2013 with some new and exciting adventures on the horizon!

Pony Luv!!!

So I didn’t ride this weekend…

My pony got to beat the heat this weekend (113* on Saturday!) and stand around in the shade in front of her fan, while I went out and was the one to work and sweat for a change.

(“About time,” she says.)

My weekend project was helping my parents to consolidate and reorganize our garage.

Today, I’m almost as sore as I am after doing a ride (minus the typical post-ride calf crunchiness), but I got about 10x filthier.

I don’t get this dirty at rides.  But I also usually
wear tights or jeans, not shorts, at rides.

Scarily enough, the pic doesn’t convey the full level of dirt.

But the garage is (mostly) done, and the pony will just have to settle for getting her barn visit this evening.
To make this vaguely horse-related, I ended up finally cleaning out my crew box, because I wanted that nice large plastic box for storage purposes.  I unearthed buried treasures, including my battery-powered glowsticks and one of Dad’s really good lightweight windbreaker/rain jackets.  And BodyGlide.  Never too much BodyGlide.