Showing posts from July, 2014

In which it's back to business as usual, which means, "we rode today."

There are so many things to love about summer.

Especially after last summer, which for me was a very painful time...made even more painful by the knowledge that I was missing out on having fun on our rare sunshine-y days.

This summer is so much better.  Not perfect, of course--I do still have another hip that will need replacing.  But not yet!  

First, there's plenty of time to hit the trails with the Usual Suspects!

Rosemary is back from gallivanting around.  We missed her.

We have a new rider with us now.
(Sirie is busy during the week days, being a grownup and earning a wage.  We are very proud of her.)  

The faithful Ariana was getting a little, err, plush.  So we drafted a very willing Samantha to help slenderize the pony.

Speaking of food, Fiddle's hay had a little extra pepper today:

I guess I'll be stepping carefully until I can get these unwelcome neighbors evicted!

(I get extra blogger points for running away screaming and then returning with a zoom lens, right?)

In which we hop around a bit, because Mel started it (and it's fun)

This is my contribution to the "blog hop" started by Mel.  The link to her original post is HERE.
Name: Aarene Storms, aka AareneX Like many other bloggers, I started out circumspectly disguising my identity and gradually threw caution to the wind.  Then, when Endurance 101 and my "other book" hit the shelves, I had to go to the other extreme and become extremely public with my identity.  So, there ya have it.  The "X" is a legitimate part of my name, by the way.Wanna steal my identity?  Have fun with that.  You could take everything I own and you'd still be deeply in debt to the universe.  ;-) Age: 50  and really quite comfortable with that

Where do you live: Swampland, Washington State
Family Status:  Without ever "having" children together, Jim and I still manage to "have" more children together than is really reasonable.  Plus, you know, the other residents of the Farm: a horse, two goats, three turkeys, nine chickens, two dogs and…

In which I take the new camera out again, with "better" results

A few tweaked settings, a fresh battery,  and significantly more light.

Apparently, that's what this new camera prefers.  

And who can blame it?  I'm more than a bit solar-powered myself.  
Changing the settings on this camera is not very intuitive; unlike the old camera, I will need a lot of practice before I can mess with this one appropriately on the move.

Movement, alas, is the weak spot:

If the light is even slightly dim and we are moving at more than a walk, the camera reverts to psychedelia.

So the answer seems to be:  seek out sunlight and maintain a sedate pace.

Easy, right?

Bah haha hah hah haa!

Yeah, no.  

In which the weather (and the new camera) are not what I had hoped

Finally, the truck is un-borked, and I awoke this morning to bright, shiny...errr, rain.

The Usual Suspects are unusually banged up and sickly this week (the horses are fine, it's the people who are under the weather), so I opted for a solo trip into the muck with my trusty Dragon.

Time to try out the new raincoat...and the new camera.
I haven't completely given up hope of finding my Old Faithful Camera, because Gail and Mike are planning to look for it today while they are un-marking the stretch of trail where it got lost on ride day. 
It's been gone so long, though, that I went out and purchased a replacement...practically the same camera.
A little newer...and, it turns out, a bit inferior.

I know, I know:  I live in a state where recreational pot is legal...but not for electronic devices.

 The good news is that the long Muddy Creek raincoat I ordered after the last monsoon worked pretty well in the rain today.  In fact, it kept me so warm that my leg muscles felt damp…

In which the truck is borked, so we have a field trip without the horses

What does an endurance rider do while the truck is in the shop?
Well, this endurance rider likes to go to storytelling festivals.

We've been here before.

 But that's okay.

 The stories are always new.

 Even the familiar tellers had new tales to share.

Sometimes, a teller will share an old story, with a new twist.

 Or maybe an old story, told the old-fashioned way.

 We all come together every summer, because

 Margie MacDonald really knows how to throw a great party for storytellers!

Storytellers aren't just grownups, of course.

 Stories are for everyone.

In which we hide from the heat and mystify the neighbors just for fun

You can almost hear the neighbors thinking aloud when they look at our place on days like today:

"Now what are they doing over there?"

Well, friends, today was a day to celebrate Santa Jim. 
His birthday was the excuse.....but basically, we got together because we are fond of him.

Usually our summer parties center around the fire pit, where we toast various stuff and huddle in for a little extra warmth.
But this week is apparently the week designates as "summer in the Swampland," and we are all suffering in temps above 85°f.
In our defense, summer temps here rarely top 80°, and air conditioning is limited to cars and shopping malls. Houses don't have AC, and most small shops and churches don't have AC.
Which means that for a week or so every third or fifth year, the locals swelter, whine, and try not to melt.
This week is that week, apparently.
We had a party anyhow.

Everyone was invited. 
We made a shade canopy attached to the barn so Fiddle and the goats cou…

In which a week in camp this year is much better than camp was last year

Last year, our week at the Renegade ridecamp was sublimely sub-optimal.

This year was better.

Much better.
It was not entirely without setbacks, of course. Like, I lost my camera on the trail during the ride, and it hasn't been located yet.

I was out on the trail, not stuck in camp.

And look who else was there:

Other stories will have to wait...I'm still hoping the trail un-marking crew will find my camera before some elk eats it.  My storytelling is really pathetic without illustrations!
But hey.
It was good.
Actually, come to think of it, it's all good.
(But it will be even better if my camera comes home!)