So I realized I haven’t posted anything about how Bentley is settling into his summer home. Shame on me!
After the Summer Solstice ride, Bentley hopped onto a strange trailer with a strange new horse, and zipped 5 minutes down the road. Somehow, in that short time he and Cairo (the other horse) became the best of buddies. I really mean, best of buddies. Neither horse in the past have been particularly herdbound, but once we released them into the field together, there were no fireworks: just a lovely pas de deux of trotting cantering and galloping around the field, hip to hip, shoulder to shoulder. They have been inseparable ever since. It’s a little annoying actually – it makes grooming him in the barn very irritating as he fusses and calls and is just an overall wreck without his bud.
Fortunately for me the fussing ends when it comes time to hit the trail. Bentley almost drags me down the driveway, road, and into the fields and hunt camp where we can easily pass a few hours riding together. At first he wasn’t quite sure what was expected of him – trails are for competitions right? But he now has figured out its just another fun part of home.
A few times we have ridden over to Dufferin and worked a bit on their trails. When we got into camp, Bentley looked around like “uhh where is the timer? Don’t I get credit for this?” The deer flies are horrible right now, so there is very little walking done. That being said, Bentley never seems to want to go home, I keep blowing by the trail home and he doesn’t seem to mind (in fact I think he speeds up to pass it just so I won’t recognize it, and it works!). If anything, he becomes a bit cranky when he knows there are no more loops. I was a little amazed the other day when we went out for a ride, and managed to get 35 miles in without thinking too hard about it. It just felt like a fun little ride in the forest. I guess thats what happens when you are 2 weeks away from doing 1000km.
One funny thing from my dufferin ride however, is my motivation. I woke up the one day craving fried chicken. No idea why. So I went to the grocery store, bought some hot meals fried chicken, and left it in the parking lot. It was my reward for riding there (and around). Somehow, that made the distance seem shorter – not sure if it was the chicken itself, or the fact that I had a particular destination in mind, but it is different than the endurance races somehow, and different from training rides. I just can’t explain it, but it all worked out! On a related note, if you have been chatting with me in real life you may have heard my motivation for finishing in under the 10 days max – more days of clean underwear. I don’t think my fried chicken will last that long.