Sunday, December 4, 2011

Oh Harley was a racehorse...

Rolex Girl & Harley on the Orris Falls Trail
I've written my own version to the tune of Stewball:
Oh Harley was a racehorse,
And now he is mine,
He likes to have breakfast
At a quarter to nine.

His saddle is leather,
His bridle is not,
And the lump between his ears,
Is a giant big knot.

His girlfriend is Ruffy,
A great big bay mare,
And when we cross water,
Oh my, what a pair!

Blah, blah, blah...more verses to come. Singing does two things for Harley, keeps his mind off scary things (I watch his ears swivel back toward me) and I scare away those scary things--birds, deer, squirrels, etc. , especially when its getting dark and the monsters come out.

He was quite jumpy Saturday. In fact, I had to get off and lead him onto the Orris Falls trail. Barking dogs, yelling kids, and cars parked at the trailhead made him come unglued, something he hasn't pulled since last year. He whirled to the left, then would only go in reverse.  I don't like a dancing horse on the road, so I jumped off and walked him into the woods. Everything was going fine until 2 hikers appeared, and one had a walking stick--YIKES! He walked past, eye and ear cocked to the side, watching, and when the walking stick moved, he jumped sideways. I laughed,  "Oh he's just scared of the dark." Since it was getting dark fast, I took him down the trail that parallels Orris Falls. Again, he kept a wary eye on the rushing water and chasm off to our left. "You're OK", I told him, stroking his neck. We speed-walked the rest of the way home.

Actually, he's not that bad, but come winter, when the wind is gusting through the woods, and leaves swirl in dervishes, he's just a bit jumpy. Ruffy, now with us for about 4 weeks, isn't keen to cross water, but today, Harley pulled through (although he thought about ducking out), leading the way for her through the brook out by Jepson's, and through two very deep flooded spots on a 4WD road. Always happy to be heading home, he doesn't miss the turn unlike Ruffy who still doesn't know her way around the hinterlands and walked right passed it.

John switched tack onto Roley after washing down and blanketing Ruffy, leaving her munching on hay in her stall. Harley had a snack while he waited, then it was off again. By now we were losing daylight, so we went on a short jaunt up the power line (S. Berwick's version of that Tevis Cup climb you see horses scrambling up) to the Big Bump trail and down across the water at the head of Orris Falls, just so Roley could get some more experience dealing with water crossings. Both horses seemed to be in lollygag mode, so we ambled home and stopped for pictures. The sun was setting, lighting up the trees with a rosy glow--another glorious sunset tonight.

Oh, and just to set the record straight, Harley usually gets breakfast before 8:45, and the non-leather bridle is a beta Dr. Cook's Bitless bridle (when John's not using it on the fillies), and finally,  although he can be right bugger sometimes and act foolish, he's my best boy, and I love him.


  1. Great song! I make up songs too and singing always works with racehorses. Probably with all horses!

    Great ride and love that you are using the bitless so much on the girls and Harley boy. Those three horses are so glad they landed in your happy life. Harley is your best boy!

  2. I have to admit, I chickened out on the bitless bridle Saturday. My wild child was demonstrating a need to really have good contact. As it turned out, he wasn't that bad. I won't be such a chicken next time!


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