By Patty Wilber
The Pecos Chapter of the Back Country Horsemen finally got a trail project under its belt last weekend. We had been shut out of forests, along with everyone else, because of the very dry conditions and the big fires burning in New Mexico. But the monsoonal pattern rolled in a little early (June instead of July), the rain started falling and the forests opened up.
Our group worked on Spruce Trail in the Manzanos, improving the trail bed and taking out some trees across the trail. Gette got to go.
Gette was ponied behind Lucy, and true to what we have observed about her personality so far, did not have an issue with anything. She followed along, tied to trees without fussing when we were working, and did not melt down when the sweat bees swarmed in. The bees, fortunately, did a lot of buzzing, but no stinging.
This weekend, Gette will make her show debut in Yearling In Hand Trail. Unfortunately, this will not be as I pony her off Lucy. This class consists of me leading her, on foot, over a series of obstacles at a walk and a trot. I’ve had to practice running for the last few months to be able to do this.
I had not run anywhere in a very long time, so I was quite out of shape, but also, my body actually seemed to have forgotten HOW to run. At first I could barely run 20 steps and I felt like my limbs were flailing about. Also, I was gasping for breath. Yes, kind of pathetic.
As I kept at it, it stopped feeling quite so uncoordinated, and I am up to a full circuit of my small arena, in the sand, with my boots on. That is still barely anything, but at least I ought to be able to complete the pattern with Gette, without looking too ridiculous. Who knows? Maybe I will make it up to half a mile or something by Christmas.
In my defense, I stopped running because I have had ACL replacements in both knees and multiple cartilage tears, and it hurt. Weirdly, this small amount of running, and maybe my new program of breathing through my nose and not my mouth, has resulted in less pain overall in my knees. Do not be looking for me to be doing any actual running races, though.
Gino, Gette’s half brother, is going to show Yearling In Hand Trail, also, and since they are best friends, it may be a little interesting, being at a new venue and all, when one enters the ring and the other is Left Out. Gino is a bit more attached to Gette, than vice versa, but Gette has not been to any shows, while Gino has!
We shall find out! But no matter what, it will another good experience!