Interesting day today 6 8 2021


When I woke up this morning for the first time since my neck surgery, my jaw did not feel like someone had slugged me. It is phantom pain. The doctor told me that some nerve damage was likely.
In my case I feel pain where I have no injury. It is not debilitating in any way and is not severe….just a pain in the jaw. It has lightened up the last couple of weeks which tellt me the nerves are healing. It was quite nice to wake up and it was not sore.
During the day the nuisance has come back, but at least it is improving.

Took a couple of photos of my wild flowers garden….I never imagined I would enjoy it so much. It is a little different every day


I have zuchini that are about ready for harvest, but alas we are still a few weeks from a tomato sammich

Stated the day by moving the equines to a new paddock and mowing the one they were in the last couple of days. Those who know me know that I have a lot of small paddocks and rotate the stock thru them fairly frequently. This time of year I am mowing paddocks after grazing and then closing them off to rest and recover.

Below is a shot of today’s paddock after mowing.

I am also still cleaning up damage from the ice storm this winter….right after the storm I spent several days cutting limbs and trees off the fences. Now as I graze them I am cleaning up the bigger pieces and burning them in my concrete fire ring, the smaller stuff just gets chopped up with the Bush hog. Still have a couple of paddocks yet to graze for the equines before we start the second round

Below Is a picture of the debris from a paddock that is about a tenth of an acre. It has already been burned today.

Then Apache and I went for a walk. We went to North anna battlefield park. Our goal was to walk three miles on the gray trail…but we did not quite make it..the gray trail is not quiet a mile and a half from end to end so to get three miles I have to walk some of the loops twice….Apache did not see the sense in walking circles…we came to one intersection and when I turned to do the loop, …..well he just stopped and turned to face the path to the parking lot…I told him he was right and followed him to the truck. We did 2.79 miles. He promptly stuck his nose in the air conditioning vent and went to sleep. While it was not too awful hot when we started, it was pretty warm when we finished…I am still marinating in my own ambiance….Apache is asleep under a fan.

Took a photo of Dixies brand and sent it to my friend Anthony Macalister. He is a big player in the mule world and I am hoping he can help me find Dixies origins. Maybe he will recognize the brand or know someone who will.

Still feeling good from another great ride with Dr. Condi yesterday,. I even sent Jim Blanks a note thanking him for the opportunity to own Condi. She is rapidly moving up my list of all time favorite horses….as an older unit, I have had the opportunity to ride a good many horses of all types and descriptions…some were mine and many were somone elses…some went on to big things, some I made into better horses at their job, some were broncs that learned a trade and made good horses…….at least one was an outright outlaw who in my younger days wrecked several people after she wrecked me. I learned a little from all of them…now Dr. Condi and I are learning together and I am having a ball. She sometimes now seems to be so tuned in to me that she knows what I am thinking. I have had horses before who were as responsive but they were horses that I rode every day or in a regular rotation. With Condi I am lucky to ride once or maybe twice a week. Thinking of all the horses I have learned from has dredged up a lot of good memories as well.



6 7 2021 DR. CONDI SESSION YORK RIVER STATE PARK


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Dr. Condi and I were invited to ride with three ladies at York River State Park this morning. Always in need of a therapy session I promptly accepted on behalf of Dr. Condi and myself.
I had ridden with one of these ladies at the last Poor Peoples riding club ride at Washington Lacy Park and our horses were well suited in pace and temperament and we had a nice ride.
she and her friends were riding and asked me if i would care to join them.

Condi and I had not been to York River but once with the Poor Peoples riding club and that was quite a few years ago.

photo park sign

I had little memory of the trails but remembered how to get to the park….I had no recollection of how long it would take to get there….

I allowed time to stop at Hardees for a biscuit and a drink….wanna guess who was still a bit early….I had no idea how long it would take me to get there and I allowed plenty of time…
bugs were pretty fierce in the parking lot but it gave me time to give Condi a good grooming. The stable flies were pretty bad in the parking lot so I slathered her up pretty good
with both some ultra boss and some regular horse fly spray. Bugs out on the trail were not too bad at all. But I had my trusty fly bat and did swat a few.
The bug dope seemed to make her less appealing to the pests. Bugs out on the trail were not too bad at all.
while I was at it I slathered myself as well with some Repel and high percentage DEET. I was aiming to deter ticks…
I picked up a bunch on my last couple of walking forays.
all kinds….some lone star…some brown dog ticks….and a number of seed ticks so small they are hard to find until they start itching

Apache had quite a few as well so I got a can of sevin yesterday and dusted him pretty good and that helped him immensely…thinking about dusting me.

The ladies got there early as well and intros of horses and humans were made all around and everyone tacked up and we headed out.

Condi and I started out in the back and for a little while she was comfortable with that, but before long she had managed to sneak her way to the front.
The ladies did not seem to mind and if they did were too polite to criticize. They were all on gaited horses so keeping up with Condi was not a hardship on them.
We mostly just ambled along due to the heat and humidity. It was warm but under the shade in the woods there was a little breeze blowing and it was not uncomfortable at all.

I had two cell phones with me but I never took either one of them out of the holster to take any photos…I had on gloves and did not want to drop either of the phones and when i am riding
Condi I am enjoying life too much to worry with taking pictures. When we rode out onto a small beach along the river i thought about photos but I didn’t take any…there were
warning signs about steep drop offs and swift currents so I did not venture into the water. Condi was sinking in the dry sand up to her fetlocks so we did not hang
around in the sun and got back into the woods. a little bit later i ventured up into the woods on a bit of a hill and there was a beautiful vista of the river.

this photo is very close to what I saw….

I gpsed the trail we road and downloaded it to google earth pro and printed the route. it was basicly a ride out and back and we did 7.31 miles

Looking at the PARK trail map on the web site there are horse trails and there are pedestrian and bike trails. I saw a couple of signs for no horses allowed.
the majority of the trails we rode were nice sandy well graded trails suitable for side by side riding. the trails were soft enough that shoes or boots are not necessary….
mostly sandy footing. the forest was beautiful and a good bit more open than here in central virginia where thick underbrush is more the norm.

I had a wonderful time and travel time to the park is no worse than a trip from here to Petersburg or Five Forks which are both nice places to ride..
as long as the traffic on the interstate cooperates…today it was pretty good.

When I got home I saw a message on facebook that my friend Jim Leahey is plannning to celebrate his 80th birthday with a ride at Lake Anna on the 16th…..
I immediately signed up for the ride

Walking with Apache 6 1 2021


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Apache and I had missed a few days of walking. We needed to get back in the groove. We decided that we would go first thing this morning and we did although we dawdled a bit before leaving. I was pretty sure that we needed gas in the van so we decided to go to Washington Lacy park and we could get fuel in Ashland.

Our goal was to walk over three miles at a decent pace. we got that done

We walked 4.38 miles this morning including the hills on the power line.

Washington Lacy is a pretty park to walk in….the wooded trails especially on the northeast side are very pretty and being wooded are normally pretty comfortable temperature wise……One of us did work up a pretty good sweat this morning though

below is a picture snapped on one of the wooded trails on the northeast side.

always pretty and inviting. the trails within the park have some small hills but generally they are pretty easy to navigate. On the southwest side of the park the trails can be damp when there is a lot of moisture. Today they were pretty good even with the nice rain over the weekend.

to challenge our indurance we normally walk a section of the power line on the north side. There are three hills that will make your heart pump a little faster. I have tried several times to get a good photo of the two big hills but I don’t carry a good enough camera to capture them. Below is todays failed effort at a photo. Apache and I normally climb to the top of both hills and try to not stop in the ascents.

After our walk we stopped and filled the van with Gas and then toddled on home and had some lunch.

when we were coming down the driveway I looked in the stable and saw that the two new friends were sharing a stall again…so I snapped a quick photo…..they were standing there side by side and Pete was in his stall two stalls over.

As I approached Dixie stuck her head over the gate to see if I had any treats. She was disappointed that time…..she is a little spoiled….

After lunch I fired up the push mower and mowed under the electric fences where the cattle are currently…the grass has gotten taller than the fences and I usually mow either a paddock or some fence lines every day.

I have finally been able to put Diva, my cow, back with the three calves. Divas calf took a while to wean but she is finally leaving mama alone….so now that it has rained I will probably have to resume cutting the lawn again before long……

Or maybe Diva will teach the calves to follow her and if I can get them to come to call like she does then I can use them all to mow the lawn….might be worth a couple of tries….