Some of the barns I contacted three weeks ago began to return my calls/ emails. Several are full and would put me on their waiting list. I actually toured three barns.
The first barn was extremely pricey and had a hardcover 300 page rulebook. Their clientele is mainly younger girls. I like rules but there were some extreme and odd ones with costly consequences: like a $5.00 per time if your horse poops in its water bucket… like I could control that. Plus, their barn hours were not really suitable for a working person. Barn Closes at 6 pm. I don’t get out of work until 5pm, by the time I drive to the barn it will be 5:30pm ~ sorry.
Barn #2 had a more relaxed attitude. A very nice indoor arena with synthetic footing. The boarders were mainly women my age. But the turnout was an extremely dangerous situation; sand and gravel pastures and to get to the grass area out back, the horses had to cross over a 100 ft ravine by way of a little foot bridge – no rails or fencing to protect them from falling. I know this sounds picky but I had a friend whose horse was impaled by a tree in a similar type of setting. Moving on…
Barn #3 was in the middle of a landfill. Although the facility was very nice, the smell was horrible and I was seriously concerned about water contamination.
By this time, I decided to make a list of what I really wanted and do pre-barn visit drive-bys to make sure the facility was semi-horse sensible.
Time to get creative with my barn search.
At first, I thought if I drove around the horse countryside up and down dirt roads that I knew had barns, maybe, just maybe I’d find the perfect place. Not really doable but it was a thought.
By this point in my life I just know my mare is wasting away in a field up north, all the work we’ve done will be worthless, we are missing the show season and she will never forgive me for leaving her so long. She might not even remember me by now. YEP, I’m bluuuueeee.
I keep telling myself she is safe and well cared for where she is, and it is the best situation for the time being, until I find a good and safe place for her here. But I have not had this much time off or away from her in… ever.
I happen to be a huge chicken about certain things and am insanely shy. If my husband was here, he’d just pulling to a drive and ask “Do you board?” I can barely call the numbers listed on Google, but this is my mare and I’m missing her.
While searching, I came across the email of a judge I scribed for last year, she lives in this area. So I emailed her, asked her about barns in the area and trainers. I called the local large animal vet asking for recommendations.
It’s the end of week three. I’m heading north to see my mare, puppy and husband. I’m about ready to chuck this whole thing and crawl in to a hole, when I received an email back from the judge,
“Welcome home! You’re not going to like it here. What were you thinking? Less trees, less fresh air, lots of traffic and people……”
She gave me the names of seven people who own barns in the area, which she and another highly recommended trainer work out of, and she will call them for me. I get to meet her on Monday; she is reassured I’d have my mare here with in the week.
Now I’m looking forward to week 4, maybe my sense of humor will return.
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