I just love this photo. I take a lot of photos, but often, when I'm riding, I'll get these rainbows and colors. This didn't happen until last year, after loosing Sheila. There are plenty of technical reasons why this thing happens, but lots of people that say it is a spirit. I don't know for sure, but it sure makes me feel super happy to think she's right there, riding double with me, one finger hooked on my left pant loop, the other hand rubbing on Pegasus' hip, leaning back enjoying the view. Oh, how I miss her.
I've been riding every day. If I don't have a chance to get out in the hills, I'll just ride around my paddock, practicing on teeny little moves (one foot here, one foot there) or side passing or backing in a circle or gait changes. Prestigious has such a lovely lope, balanced and smooth. The other day we rode with David and Roy up the canyon again, late in the day. That's where this picture was taken. Prestigious scrambled back up around the snow bank first again, but this time he seemed much less anxious about it. This felt much more like real determination. A short distance beyond, he shook his head a number of times as if he was mighty impressed with himself for tackling that obstacle. We rode further than we'd gone the other day, bushwhacking around fallen trees and plodding through dwindling patches of snow. Sometimes he'd lead, sometimes he'd follow Roy. One spot the aspens are coming in so thick, it's like a curving hallway where you can't see what's ahead or behind. Eventually after about an hour, we came to a place where two enormous trees had fallen across our path. They were neck high and in order to get around them would have been quite a task, we decided it was late in the day, so we turned around to go home. Both horses picked up their speed, after all, it was dinnertime. We had to correct that, because dinnertime or not, we don't hurry. It's not polite. Instead of just pulling on Prestigious to slow him down, I collected him, rounding his poll, and began moving his hip in or out, or I kept him moving straight, but had him arc his neck around to the left or right on a soft rein. When he got with me and did these things correctly, I completely let him loose. Pretty soon he was walking along nice and relaxed. About half way back, he began swishing his tail around and his body tensed up. I rubbed around his tail and asked David to look to see if something was biting him. This kept up for a few minutes. I stopped him, asking him to stand still. We stood there for a full two minutes and then he suddenly stretched out and took the longest pee. It can take a while for some green horses to figure out they can pee with a rider on their back. After that he was totally happy.
All around our property, the poplars and cottonwood trees are in full bloom. As the dense blossoms release their pollen into the air, little white puffs float on the breeze. Drifts of white pile up in the corners everywhere. Summer snow is what we call it. As the horses grazed in the early evening, I looked up toward the tall trees. I swear, it looked like fairy dust.