Jun 242011

By Patty Wilber

Lacey (AKA Esmerelda, her not-so-secret good luck name.)

She had surgery on Monday. And this is what they found:  Her joint fluid looked much more normal! Better color and consistency and far fewer neutrophils (which indicates less infection!)

Smaller cyst. The bad spot is smaller!  Healing is occurring.

The furazone wrap worked to reduce the swelling. so Dr. Dralle was able to flush the joint really well AND find a vein to inject antibiotics right to the site.  It looked so good that he did not leave the joint open for drainage!

The closed wound is great news for me! Less chance of another infection, less pain, two weeks of legs wraps that I change every other day instead of 3 months changed daily, and a most likely, a less damaging scar!

The new antibiotics are working!

The Pecos.

Myself, my Spousal Unit and Progeny #2 all went on a Back Country Horsemen pack trip Saturday and Sunday.

Left at 6 am. Got about 20 miles down the road when heard “Pop. Shhh,  kethunk.”  Pulled over cuz, yes it was a flat on the trailer.  Not an issue, as I have the handy dandy Jiffy Jack!

Jiffy Jack!

Of course if your spare is flat, it is actually an issue.

What will be open in the Lovely Town of Moriarty NM at 6:30 am on a Saturday morning?  Not much according to the phone book, but we drove on down the main drag (which you can do with a flat on a trailer with two axles like the one in the picture above), and we we saw a shop that was either abandoned (2 votes) or open (1 vote).


He referred us back up the road to another shop of similar appearance.  We got our flat fixed ($22), bought a new tire (from the first guy; $100 but “Big discount! Really good tire!  Ten ply!”)  We were on our way around 8 am.

We were late to meet the BCHer’s (got to Panchuela around 10 am instead of 8 am) but they were not impatient.  There was a lot of gear to pack and we finally were on the trail with equipment for a trail crew by noon.

Risa loaded and carrying her hobbles around her neck. My hitch of choice is still the box hitch.

Penny also carried a load and got ridden! And ponied Risa in.

I haven’t done much with Risa this summer (ever since she was so terrible at the March show…) but she packed like a charm, even over the little mud and water we encountered, except for that one spot where the aspen sapling caught on the edge of the pannier, bent and then slipped under the bottom of the pack.

Risa, propelled, not so much by the spring in the sapling but the surprise in her brain, catapulted forward.  The tree knocked her pack askew so we did a quick re-center and re-hitch.

The Pecos Wilderness is the driest I have ever seen it, and in fact, the Pacheco Fire started to west while we were riding in. It ended up going from five acres on Saturday to 3000 acres on Sunday. As of Thursday pm it was 5500 acres and only 10% contained.

In camp, the horses were hobbled to graze and then were high-lined for the night. The air is hazy due to smoke from the Pacheco Fire

Cometa, Penny and Risa, hobbled and grazing.

I ended up lending Penny to our BCH VP for the ride out, as his horse was feeling puny.  I rode Risa.  Oh joy.  First, I tried her in line behind John who was being ponied by Penny. Cometa followed behind Risa. She trusts Cometa. I thought.

Jig, spook, jig, twtich. Head toss for good measure.  This is going to be a very long eight miles…So, I put her at the very back.  That worked…

Until after lunch. P#2 was hiking and he hiked behind me for a while, which was fine with Risa. Then he stopped longer than we did at a stream, so he had to catch up.  Risa completely forgot about him apparently, because when he started to close the gap, her imagination lit up:.  “there is something behind me.  with big teeth.  or a big ass knife.  that will be used to stab me. in the jugular.  death is imminent.”

This went on until P#2 was in speaking range, at which point she snapped.  “oh.  him!  never mind.”

She also did fine in the back until we stopped and moved off the trail.  Whenever this happened, her Zen was disturbed.  “they are out of place.  put them back in place!  aahhhh!”

Geez. That’s exactly why I ride Penny and pack Risa.  Much more relaxing.

But we made it home, just in time to find out that on Tuesday I needed to help move cows from Llaves to The Ranch. The water at Llaves was drying fast.

Left the house at five Tues am, returned Weds at 2 am, 22 hrs later.

Banded (elastic at the base of the testicles), branded, ear tagged and vaccinated.

Banding tool for calf castration. Slip 'em in and release the rubber band. Do it again.

Run away!

We got ‘er done, loaded up and drove to The Ranch.  I am two for two in vehicles heading up that road.  They overheat. I was not driving either time.

Finally made the ranch by 5 pm (only took 12 hours to get there).

Yippee! (Ki yay)

Off to join the other bunch that hiked in a few weeks ago.

We could leave now. Except Cowboss and the Amon Amarth* Aficionado were staying another 10 days or so to work the fence and neither of us home-bound folks wanted to go.  We invited ourselves to dinner and then dragged our butts reluctantly down the mountain as the day melted away. (Saw a ton of deer and elk on the drive which was a bonus.)

Time to go. Daylight is fading.

The main problem with going to The Ranch is coming home. Despondent, like waking from the perfect dream or coming to the end of a perfect book. I probably would have hidden under a bunk and refused to come out except there’s no phone service up there and had  hungry horses at home.

*”Melodic” Viking Metal Band.  Check out the video Twilight of the Thunder God.     Viking Metal.  Who knew?!  And even more incongruous:  Viking Metal includes Danish Folk Metal which seems to combine Renaissance fair-like music with growled lyrics…

Amon Amarth will be in Albuquerque on August 29, just in case you want to go…(!)

  • Richard Hall

    Ok I gave it a shot but I will stick with Neil Young and Cletic folk music. Perhaps when I I was 20 and smoking something other than tobacco in my pipe but that was a long long time ago.

  • Cathy McManus

    Wow, you really had a busy week! The calves are killer cute too. Won’t be too soon if I hear another “trailer glitch story”. Good title for a song perhaps? Glad you made it back safely from all of your trips.

  • Hi Cathy-That light brown calf has really big soft eyes, too! And that flat spare was completely my fault as I knew it had a slow leak and forgot…. Oh well! It all worked out in the end.

    Richard–I have not become a Viking Metal fan but do admit to a kind of wierd fascination!

  • Lori Wilson

    Really, really glad to hear that Lacey/Esme is doing much better! She is so cute. Good job for hanging in there, Patty!

  • Sherry

    We could have fed hungry horses at home! Silly Patty!

  • Hi Lori–thank you so much!! I am feeling very good. I changed the dressing and the wound site is nearly invisible. Amazing! And the swelling is very much improved! And between that and the previcox pain killer she is moving very well! Triple yippee!!!

    Sherry–I know and I guess I should have just set that up as had you suggested before I left! Believe me if I had a satellite phone I would have called you! Next time!! Thank-you!

  • Geeze, no wonder the email went unanswered. So glad about Lacey!

  • Yeah–sorry about the email… I am looking ahead at the next three days and they look–RELAXING! What a nice thing!

  • Colleen Crandall

    so good to hear about Lacey.

  • Patty

    Thank-you Colleen. I am really hopeful!!!!