As I got into my car this morning, I felt a bit uneasy. Maybe I shouldn’t be going out? No, no… it’s fine. Where I’m going, there will be less than ten people, and 99% of the time I will be more than six feet away. So I drove. As I passed the grocery stores on my way, I noticed how crowded the parking lots were. Still. I need to pick up a few things later, hope they have what I want (no TP needed!).
As I got closer to my destination, I felt calmer. Pulling into the parking area, there were only two other cars. Two other cars = two people. I got my supplies from the back of my car and walked in the building. Not a soul to be seen. Yet. I set down my things, and walked out back to retrieve the most important “supply” of the day. A big, chunky, grey speckled horse, Vee.
I walked right up to him, gave him a neck scratch as he sniffed my pockets for treats. “Yes Vee, I brought you a carrot. Just a piece, though. You’ll get the rest later.” After snapping the lead rope to Vee’s halter, I gave him the bit of carrot, and we slowly and quietly navigated through the mud back to the barn.
After clipping Vee into the cross-ties and removing his blanket, I got to work. It’s shedding season, and after just a few seconds of brushing, I was grey speckled as well! I finished brushing, then went to work on his wildly overgrown mane, then to picking the packed mud out of his hooves.
Time to tack up. Saddle pad, riser pad, saddle. Martingale, girth. Put on my helmet, spurs and gloves. Finally, the bridle. Make sure my phone is on silent, then head to the arena. In the arena, walk a bit, stop, tighten the girth. Walk a bit more, tighten the girth once more. Step on the mounting block, and I’m on! We walk for several laps, and I enjoy the peace and quiet. There is another horse and rider in the arena, we say hello, then retreat into our own routines.
As I ride, putting Vee through circles, transitions, and other exercises, all thoughts are on him. I can’t worry about anything but what we are doing, what we are trying to accomplish. I’m not over-thinking my shopping list (should I have shopped sooner? Do I really need TP? Should I buy more pasta?), worrying about how many germs I may have picked up last night as we went out with friends for St. Patrick’s Day, or worrying about whether or not I have enough meds in the house in case one of us does get sick. I am truly in the moment. And it brings me peace. For a little while, anyway.