I arrived at Jerome Creek this afternoon around 4pm after a perfectly lovely 5 1/2 hour drive. My goals were 1) Greet, pet, kiss, reprimand (mix, repeat) my dogs--Hoover squoke with joy for a whole five minutes 2) Unload my car and get my slushy fruits into a freezer 3) fetch Shadow and have a relatively short, easy bareback ride that all dogs could accompany me on. Shadow, of course, added a pre goal-3 constitutional because I'd come out with carrots as a lure and not grain--idiot--and so I trekked up the hill, then down the hill after flying heels, then back again and further up the hill into the trees after flying heels that were too fast for me to really track them, then back down the hill when no heels were to be found anywhere, flying or not, then to the Garagemahal for a bucket of grain, then, finally, to a fence post where I could acouter my steed.
The ride was absolutely lovely. Warm evening air, slanted sunlight, leaves just beginning to change, the smell of aging fir needles, horse who was, once caught, quite happy to be on an outing. Dogs ranging according to their ages and interests (i.e. Spackle right behind Shadow's now reasonably paced heels; Hoover covering ten times the ground). The worst thing, I mused, about riding alone, was that there was no one to benefit from the cleared path, from which I had taken 3,476 spiderwebs with my face, and 10,003 fir needles with the rest of my upper body.
Then, I mused some more, and decided that no, I was wrong, that was the second worst thing. The WORST thing was that there was no one here to perform those services for ME.