Monday, June 10, 2013

Yep Angie, Got My Own German Foreign Exchange Student to Ride My Hoss

Well, I was so envious of Angie's German exchange student that I went out and got one of my own!  Here she is, Hannah, riding my handsome Curly boy Ah-D. 
OKAY, I will stop all the lying. Hannah is actually a guest of my friends Bob and Terry, and we went out on a group trail ride/drive on Sunday up in their neck of the woods.  Stoneham, Maine is beautiful country and there are plenty of back roads and trails from which to choose, all of which are surrounded by greenery this time of year. Very pleasing to the eye. 

This was a fantastic learning opportunity for Ah-D to be exposed to a team pulling a forecart.  Forecarts are somewhat noisy, with chain jingling and metal parts clanging.  At Acadia National Park, whenever we needed to pass a big team hauling tourists in a wagon, Ah-D was quite taken aback by the sight and smell, and I had to dismount for safety.  Now, we are better partners. Ah-D was definitely curious, but not shocked or scared. 
Hitching up

We humans talked it over and decided it was better to start out with the riders behind the team.  This worked out great, except that right near the beginning of the trip, the forecart tire ran over a discarded water bottle. Kabang! Swoosh! Ah-D spooked a bit, but who wouldn't? Even I jumped.  (Well, not counting Allie, who didn't do a thing - haha)

I eventually guided Ah-D on all sides of the team Pat and Willy, and when we stopped at a small clearing so Terry could take a picture for posterity, Ah-D reached out to Willy (or was it Pat?) to officially make his acquaintance.  My Curly is so friendly!

Love this picture of Willy picking at Pat.  Ah-D does this all the time to Allie.  And Ah-D friend Jax does it all the time to him, so what goes around comes around, I guess.

All of us had such a good time.  Ah-D was having fun, too, I know it!  He was all fired up to keep up with the team, and I think he was showing off because his head was higher than usual and there was a definite spring to his step.  Once in a while Hannah and I would hold our horses back so that we could canter to catch up.  Both Ah-D and Allie were right into it! 

Once I was sure that Ah-D was not frightened of the team pulling the forecart, I offered to switch horses with Hannah so that she could ride Ah-D.   Hannah is young, tall and fit, and language barrier aside,  I could tell from the first moment I saw her sit a horse that she could RIDE.  She has very correct and elegant posture in the saddle which belies her claim that she could ride "some." Yep, she and Ah-D hit it off!  She "hogged" him the whole rest of the ride, which made my heart a-flutter because I just love showing other people just how wonderful my Curly is!!!  Very rarely do I get to watch other people ride my horse.  Boy, is he CUTE! And, I had fun on Allie, because he was excited and determined to keep up.  It is so enjoyable to ride a horse who likes to get out and do something.

 As you can see, Hannah is much taller than me, so once we switched hosses, her legs were hiked right up from the stirrups, but my feet were just skimming mine.  Being too lazy to stop and adjust, I finally just let my legs hang.  It's good for your core muscles to do that anyway.  This morning, I can tell that I rode that way for an hour yesterday.  I bet Hannah doesn't feel a thing.

Bugs were not an issue and the weather was perfect for riding.  I didn't know where the heck I was, but it didn't matter because everyone else did, so I didn't have to worry about getting lost.  Bob was explaining to me where different trails went, but it went whoosh right over my head.  I just nodded and acted agreeable because 1. It's not very flattering to let on how directionally challenged I am 2. Bob likes to talk 3. What he was saying was interesting 4. Maybe the next time I am told, I will have an inkling of where I am in the grand scheme of Stoneham.  Once, as we passed over large culvert and I was admiring a beautiful good-sized pool of water below, Bob remarked that that is the spot where my husband and boys fished the other weekend (while I was getting a driving lesson).  So funny, because I was trying to spy some trout!  They were delicious, by the way.

 Lake Victoria was just a hop, skip and a jump from that nice fishing hole. One of the high points of the trip was experiencing Lake Victoria on horseback.  Hannah and I had fun letting our horses splash around in the lake.  Allie was very gung-ho about it, and once I even got the feeling that he was intending to lay down in the water, so I had to put the kibosh on that!

This from a pony who wouldn't even THINK of crossing a brook a few years ago!

Maybe it was just my imagination.   Thinking back, I should have ditched the cell phone, camera and saddle and let Allie go for it! At any rate, the scenery there was gorgeous.  It is on my agenda for next time.    
Hannah and Ah-D silhouetted against the view
Hope you enjoyed our trip to Stoneham.  Ah-D and I sure did! 



  1. Wahoo, awesome Susan, I am so excited to share Hannah's adventures with Ah-D{:> Angie

  2. wouw|!!!! and beautifull pictures!!!

  3. What an awesome ride, Susan! Stoneham sure is pretty! Thanks for taking us along!

  4. Great pictures Susan, but you don't look quite right with somebody else on the great and wonderful AhD,,, You guys sure have some great countryside to ride in,, awesome

    1. haha, too funny, Harold, "the great and wonderful AhD" - you make me laugh
      (I know it, I am kind of jealous of Hannah when I look at the pictures!)


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