I am one of those people that is perfectly happy to do spontaneous things...to a point. If it involves a long trip, my horse, or packing more than one set of clothing there better be a plan involved somewhere. I haven't been driving my full rig of truck+trailer all that long. Yes I can get it in and out of the driveway which most times is the worst part of any trip and I can go various places with only a small amount of heart palpitations. But hauling my trailer longer than an hour to a place I have never been fills me with a special kind of fear. The kind of fear that screams for me to hide under the bed and never come out. A plan, a solid plan with back up plans is the only way that I have learned to keep the brain eating fear demons at bay.
I have a little less than a week until I must load the red pony and trek the 2.5 hours west in preparation for the Dom Schramm clinic. This weekend because I couldn't ride (don't ask just way too many factors got in the way including Hurricane Arthur) so what did I do? I obsessed. I cleaned the inside of my trailer, took out all those things that get thrown in there but really don't need to be there, I organized everything in to neat and tidiness, I drove to Wal-Mart and bought 2 battery operated fans to keep Fox cool, I raided my hay/storage shed for things I don't use on a regular basis like shipping boots and stall guards. In short my anxiety got channeled in to cleaning and farm chores. Whilst the red pony and his barn mates the Crack Beast, and the Brown Hippo(she is so massive right now I cut her grain in half) grazed on summer grass I cleaned the inside of my house, did dishes, put a crockpot meal together, made cupcakes from scratch, mowed every concievable piece of lawn/pasture that needed it and groomed both Fox and Seneca. Oh yeah and I started doing the massive amounts of horse laundry to include my three best saddle pads, Fox's fly sheet which also needs mending, and a couple of other odds and ends. Plus I loaded both Fox (to make sure he wouldn't spaz about the fan I put in for his comfort on the trip) and Seneca (Just to keep her on her toes and make sure that in an emergency like a bigger, badder hurricane headed our way, that I could load her.)
I did all this on Sunday because Saturday I felt like total crap from having spent the night before tossing and turning trying to get comfortable on the folding cot I set-up in my office for when I have duty and have to spend the night at the command babysitting. I forgot to grab my camp mat and as I have bony hips and am well past my teens I had a rough night and paid for it on Saturday.
So what does the rest of my week look like? Well lots more things to do. I wasn't able to wrangle Friday off of work like I wanted so I could spend a leisurely morning doing the final packing and make a nice unstressed trip to Powhatan. So instead I have to pack my trailer on Thursday evening with everything but the hay I'm taking, then Friday as soon as Superhubs gets home with the truck he'll hitch it up for me so that I when I get home a couple hours later I can just load the pony and go.
Which still leaves me with washing the outside of the trailer, packing my own clothing/tack/gear, double checking that I have things like feed, supplements, water buckets ect, bathing Fox on Thursday evening and throwing Seneca's fly sheet on him to keep his clean for the journey, and oh yeah last but not least actually riding my horse!
I did get to ride earlier last week despite the awful heat. I did a fitness ride following Jimmy Woffords fitness for event horses plan. We can easily do 9 minutes of trot with 2 minutes of walk between each 3 minute set. And, and AND! We cantered! not for huge stretches of time but I asked and Fox gave without a whole lot of fuss. So now I know where the canter button on my horse is. I just need to ride him a few times this week to make sure that button is fully functioning before we go to the clinic so that we don't embarass ourselves.
A couple of my friends are planning to come to the clinic so hopefully we'll have some awesome photos from our adventure! Until then keep it between the flags everyone!