Early last week I came up with a grand plan to take Rio home to my parents’ house over the weekend for some R&R and trail riding. My barn is a ghost town with everyone showing in Houston, so I figured it’d be a good time to get away and enjoy a change of scenery.
My parents live about 40 minutes from my barn, and we keep the horse trailer at their place. To save me time, they offered to meet me at the barn to pick up Rio (yes, my parents are awesome). We met at BYF Saturday morning and Rio hopped right onto the trailer. Somewhat surprising, as he has had some difficult trailer loading in the past. I followed them on the way home and we got there and unloaded without incident.
In order to make sure no one was injured, Rio stayed separated from the other horses, but there was plenty of playing over the fence to be had. It was a truly special moment for me when Rio and Pal met. If you are new to my blog, Pal is my 32 yr old horse from my junior days. We showed through 2nd level dressage and training level eventing together through his late teens. Pal has been in our family 25 years. (Read more about Pal here.) Seeing them together was literally seeing my past and present horse loves come together, and it was really special moment. I learned so much with Pal and we had such a special bond, and now I am getting to a new journey with Rio. So sweet. So emotional.
Pal said hi to Rio but he wasn’t too terribly interested. Luke on the other hand (who belongs to a dear family friend) was enthralled with Rio, and Rio with him. I was nervous at first that someone would get hurt or a board would get broken, but it turned out they were just playing and no fiascos occurred.
Unfortunately, my grand plan to trail ride was waylaid by cold temps and a heavy drizzle all weekend. I was also on call at the hospital all weekend and they ended up keeping my busier then I prefer. I wasn’t too disappointed though, I think Rio had a really good time getting to enjoy some new scenery and socializing. His grandma also spoiled him with lots of alfalfa, treats, and attention.
I really enjoyed having Rio at my family’s home where I already have so many wonderful memories. I spent most of Saturday there relaxing and catching-up, reveling in the small things like watching him out of the back windows. It may sound silly but it was super fun being able to text my mom on Sunday morning as asking how Rio was doing. Just knowing I could check in on him at any moment felt good. I miss that aspect of having my horse on my own property. Also having 100% control over them from when you feed them to when you turn them out and for how long was nice. I haven’t gotten to make those decisions in a long time and it felt good!
Sunday afternoon we loaded him back up in the trailer and took him back to Bay Yard. Rio must have thought this was the best trip ever. He got tons of attention, socializing, and turnout time, with zero riding!
Although I was a little sad to bring him back, it also felt right being back at the barn. Maybe someday I will want to have my horse(s) at my own place again (my dad is already trying to convince to buy their property when they are ready to sell), but it’s not the right time in my life for that. Rio is thriving at Bay Yard and he receives the best possible care. The people there are amazingly kind and knowledgeable and I would miss everyone too much to go back to doing my own thing. I do foresee more weekends “home” in our future though, I still want to take him out on the trails!