Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Stormy

Nana, Buddy, and Sarah came out to visit this weekend. It was awesome! Morgan got to stay in the hotel with the crew and everyone came on a carriage ride with me. Nana got a cool jacket, Morgan got a new wardrobe, and we all got to eat very well!





I was working Friday, Saturday, and Sunday but was rained on all of those days and hailed on on Sunday. Pye was NOT impressed. We didn't work on Monday, thankfully but it didn't make up much for three days of being soaking wet and making little money to show for it.




Enough of my whining though, Cody took the crew to Heritage Square where there were rides and games for the kiddos and I went on a shopping adventure with the rest of the crew on Saturday. Another big item of note is my birthday present... a new camera! All these pics were taken with it and I am in love! There will be a new blog video soon.



The only other item of note is that Straton apparently has severe issues with lightening and thunder. On Saturday he jumped the fence into the neighbor's yard and then destroyed their fence climbing out of their yard, and then on Sunday went through our bedroom window screen and climbed the fence escaping into the neighborhood. Even the rain has him shaking at this point. The neighbors were thankfully understanding, but we now have a large, heavy duty dog kennel in the basement to confine him anytime there is a potential of thunderstorms. Poor Straton. Brigs was upset at his escaping but otherwise unaffected by the storms.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Commenting


I sent the previous post to my friend Katey from work. You all know her indirectly from the photos of Bailey and on the carriages. Katey is cool. Katey is funny. Katey attracts the strangest people on the planet. Here are her comments on the post I made. All of this has been directly cut and pasted into this post. I hope you all get a kick out of her take on Carriage Driving!
Blog comments:
#7 - 5 dollars will not get you anywhere either.
#8- My horse is also not a Persian or a Klondike. She is not a minature clydesdale. Clydesdales are NOT "much bigger"- all draft horses run in a variety of sizes, they are all BIG. If you don't actually know how tall horses are, please do not ask me if she is "what, 19, 20 hands?"
#9- She's also not tired. Esp. at 5pm when we have not even done any rides yet!
... And my own grievances:
There are some phrases we get tired of. "Thats a big horse" is one of them. Yes... yes it is. Thank you Captain Obvious.
If you are scared to pet the horse, just don't bother. I am not here as your psychologist to help you get over your fears. If you are going to scream as soon as you touch it, DON'T TOUCH IT!
On that note... Yes, it is alive and therefore can move- if she thinks you are a fly she will twitch- she is not bucking or kicking or trying to bite you- she thinks your a fly. Yes, she can move her head. Yes, she will bite you if you stick your hands in her mouth. No, shes not going to kick you for standing next to her.... but I will let you think that if it keeps you away.
This horse is not a wild horse. Draft horses were never wild horses. If I let her run free in the wild, she would die. Have you ever seen a wild horse this size? No... and theres a reason for that.
10 is not old for a horse. Note: Horse... not dog.

Boxing

I love my job. It is exhausting and doesn't pay terribly well, (at least on a regular basis) but it is entertaining, and more importantly, involves horses. I have decided that I needed to post 10 items that annoy me on a daily basis when working on the Box Seat (that's where I sit!) so that the people I know and love can avoid becoming fodder for other carriage driver's evening stories.

1. No carriage horse working today likes to be petted. They are not like our spoiled back yard pets. They have 100-500 people daily in their faces trying to talk to them, pet them, stare into their eyes, and otherwise harass them beyond the point of insanity. If you care about them leave them alone. If you must pet them, scratch them. Especially on the edges of the saddle or collar. If you don't know what these are just avoid the action all together.

2. In regard to the above comments, just because you are a "horse person" doesn't mean you know anything about the carriage horse you are looking at, and it sure doesn't entitle you to harassing my horse after I have told you specifically NOT to. Once again I refer to #1.

3. No the flash will not bother her. You hanging off of her head will. So will the small child running through her legs.


4. Please, please, please don't run at the horse. Just because she doesn't bolt across the street into the path of the oncoming bus and taking out the pedicab and skateboarder passing by doesn't mean she didn't think about it. Pay attention to this one especially if you are dressed as a Zombie. Horses really don't find this amusing. Skateboarders fall into this category.

5. Babies don't care about horses. Many of them can not even see them as their distance vision has not yet developed. Holding them closer to the horse doesn't improve this. Neither does parking the stroller under their feet/noses. While I believe in the thinning of the gene pool, our liability insurer cringes thinking about the inevitable outcome of this ridiculously stupid action on your part. By the way I, as the carriage driver, am not yelling at you to be an @ss. I am trying to keep your infant whole.

6. No my horse is not a statue. What on earth made you even think such a ridiculous thing?

7. No you can not have a free ride. While it often seems like it, this is not a hobby. It is a job. I don't sit up here in all weather, every weekend, dealing with ridiculously stupid people for the heck of it. I do have a family who never sees me, and other things that I could be doing. Not only that but you are looking at a rig that minus the handsome driver costs upwards of $15,000. The monthly maintenance is upwards of $400. Get your head out of your rear end and leave me alone. I could be talking to someone who could keep me employed.


8. No my horse is not a Clydesdale. Nor is it a: Morgan, Quarter Horse, Appaloosa, Tennessee Walker, or an Arab. She is a Belgian. The white one over there is a Percheron. And despite what the girl over there said not all Clydesdales are boys. I recommend visiting Barnes and Noble and looking over any generic book on horses. Check out the chapter on Draft horse breeds. There are 100 or so.

9. No my horse is not sad. She is sleeping. If you are really concerned take a ride. She'd love that. It is one of the few times people are not trying to pet her face. Not only that but she likes to eat. A lot. Your dollars support her, not me. See #7 for more details.

10. No she is not a slave. You obviously know nothing about horses if you can possibly think that my overweight, out-of-shape 160# could possibly force her #1800 extremely well toned mass to do anything she didn't want to. As a matter of fact come on a ride and experience just how little she pays any attention to anything I want. She can take out vehicles. She enjoys her job. If she didn't she'd leave. Seriously. No the carriage is not heavy for her. I move it around myself when we aren't working. If anyone is a slave I am. We go in when SHE is tired, not me. When we go into the barn SHE gets a full body rub down, a blanket, feed and water. I get two hours of cleaning, caring, and driving her limo. Only then am I released to care for myself. Sometimes I even get to go to the bathroom and see my family. Oh, and like I mentioned before, the money goes to her, not me. Seriously. Her shoes cost $250 every other month. I bought shoes two years ago that cost $12 and I still wear them. And she eats far better and more regularly than I do. So do the homeless people.


Well, I hope you all enjoyed my little Carriage Driver tirade. Someday I will relay some of the more memorable stories from the Box Seat. Some are my own, many are from other drivers. (especially Katey. She attracts the freaks.) All are enjoyable!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Lacking



Well this week a new development arrived at the house. The Enormous Lilac bushes in the back yard came into bloom! They are beautiful and smell heavenly! Every couple of days we are cutting a few sprigs and bringing them indoors and the house now wafts Lilac perfume. Spring is very cool!



Little else has changed. I am still spending a lot of time on school. The parasites are still working me over but I think the battle might be won this time. So far I am hanging onto a B in the class by the fine edges of my overly chewed fingernails. I am hoping to keep it though a C will be fine too. I just never want to take this class again!



Morgan is getting through the last few weeks of school and seems to be doing OK. She is still less than enthusiastic about homework but the reading is coming along. She is looking forward to visiting WEB Ranch over the summer. Especially swimming in pools where the water is warm!



Cody is working sporadically. He seems to be focusing on installing doors lately. Apparently he specialized in third story condos now. Next week he goes to New York for a cellar install again and should be extremely wrecked mentally when he returns. The last few trips out of town have worked out not quite as planned. (To say the least!) Hopefully things will go more smoothly this time.



Lastly the animals are enjoying the nice weather. Annie is enjoying fresh grass as Marie's place is dense with spring growth so she is getting out for pasture grazing most days. Toby is still on a diet and exercise regime but has managed to crawl around on knees enough to edge around his stall to a depth of 12".



The dogs are loving the warm days and are spending a lot of time outside. Brigs had to get a short hair cut as he was obnoxiously plush but should look normal again in a week or two. And Miss Pixel has finally come around and decided that we are not going to eat her and even has allowed us to pet her! She has a huge purr and loves back scratches. I got some pictures of her as she was hiding under the bed downstairs. (She doesn't like the camera!)

Friday, May 8, 2009

Celebration!

I'm tired... it took far too long to finish this video but I didn't want to wait until Monday. Morgan is now 8 and here is the video of the fun afternoon we had! As I wait for this video to upload I should mention that I am in need of details on digital video cameras. Any opinions out there on which ones are easiest to use, plug and play, and the best memory type to get? I am kind of thinking something I can upload to my computer with a USB and a memory card. I am used to that technology and would find it easiest to work with. I can't afford anything but in a year or so when I am out of school I will definitely get one and I have no clue what I am looking for. Thanks ya'll. I'll chat more later. For now... watch the video!

video

http://eighthparakeet.blogspot.com