Thursday, August 31, 2017
I wanted to take her on a test drive first and well, I was not disappointed. She behaved perfectly.
I took her up and down the driveway and rode her for about 10 minutes. She never flipped an ear the wrong way nor did she make any misstep. In fact, I think she was quite pleased with herself.
I had told the kids that mules were happiest when they had a job to do.
We got the rest of the mules out and started grooming them for saddling.
Everyone gets involved. Dennis is still learning about saddling, but Ariel has learned how to properly saddle Siera along with putting on the breast collar and the crupper.
It really helps to have an assistant when getting this many animals saddled up.
I used my Stonewall saddle on Sunshine. My other saddles are used for the kids.
If we do another group ride, I will have to hunt up another saddle pad too. It has been years since we rode this many animals together. The last time may have been about 10 or 11 years ago.
My love of riding helmets also has proven to be a nice bonus. I have three and so we were able to use them.
After some safety checks and equipment adjustment, we were ready to go.
I called my neighbor and asked if she'd come out to our shared driveway and take a shot of this 'historic' event. Grandpa riding Mica .. and all of us mounted and together!
She obliged and I am grateful to her.
We went off to ride the oat/hay fields on the ridge. Nothing too difficult or demanding as Dennis is still getting down the finer points of mule operation. Plus Fred is in his early 30's so we try not to work him too hard.
I can only say that everyone was smiling. The mules were happy, the people were happy.
I was over the hill happy.
After Rich's stroke he was sure that he would never ever ride again. This proves once again that animals are great therapy.
This was a pretty large step for everyone. Grandpa out riding with the kids.
Sometimes things just pull together and this was one of those times.