09.04.03: End in the Middle

Today is the end of the first course out of three for me. We started out the morning with some time spent asking last minute questions and discussing a bit of philosophy and musing about our relationships with horses. It was nice to just sit around and listen to what Kristi and Nitajo had to say, and to just talk about different ideas and concepts. We finished up with that and then headed into the classroom for the 'finale'. We watched a few video clips that were focused on the information from each of the two courses, and talked about the conepts that they showed.  Then Byron said that we were going to have a 'tournament' but we were going to do so in partners rather than with horses. The whole group paired up and then divided into four groups. Each pair had to pick a "horse" and "human" and then the horse was to blindfolded. The human could use a savvy string and a short pool noodle as communication tools, but there was no talking involved. Four different tasks were written on the board once the "horse" was wearing the blindfold, and each different team out of the four groups had to complete their assigned task. The rest of the pairs on that team were the chearing section for support.
Marjorie and I ended up paired together which worked well, and we were the second team to go. Fleta and Vip were the first team, and the first task was to put your hands on your hips. Vip is an extrovert, and an overachiever to boot, and Fleta was pretty challenged getting him to stand still in the first place. They finally got it though. Marjorie decided to be the "horse" first, and my task was to get her to do 3 jumping jacks. I started to ask her to put one arm over her head, and then the other, and then step out with her feet. Then I made her put her arms down one at a time and then put her feet back together. Half way into the third time the light bulb went on, and she started doing jumping jacks. The tasks were getting progressively harder, but everyone was really trying very hard to do their best and get the task. As the horse, Marjorie had to get me to take off my shoe. She did a great job, and I was able to guess and figure it out quickly. When blindfolded it is amazing how quickly you try to seek answers, and often times, knowing the game and the other tasks that have happened for the other teams, it isn't too difficult. Some groups had to turn off the lights, go out the door and come back in, sit backwards in a chair, take someone's string and put it in your pocket, stand on a chair, pour some water, write on the white board, give someone a hug, shake someone's hand. It was a blast, and I think we all enjoyed it.
We finished up with that, and they handed out the certificates, and then did the drawing with the name tags for a winner of a free one week course. Marjorie ended up winning which was funny because she didn't have her nametag that morning, and we told her she'd better get it so she called her daughter to bring it to her, and she was the lucky one. We were teasing her that we shouldn't have told her so that it would have upped our chances of winning.
We finished up with that, and I went over to move Storm back to his original pen since there was some confusion over who was supposed to be where. Lunch was leftovers, and pretty uneventful. I finished up with that and headed back to the campground so that I could do a bit of housekeeping in the tent. With all the rain things have gotten damp and dry so many times that everything was very dirty. I pulled almost everything out of the tent, and reapplied the seam sealer, and let everything air out for a while. I didn't get enough time to get laundry started, so I decided I'd work on that after dinner. I headed back to the ranch and got Storm out and we headed up to the honeycomb to play in the pens up there since the others were so fully of water still. I grabbed three cones and we worked on transitions, stopping at each cone. He really seemed to understand, though it wasn't pretty or anything. I headed out, and played with the little trailer again, though there was a puddle in front of that which made it a bit more challenging. He explored the hallway again, this time getting more confident about it. We went up and walked through the edge of the pond again, and then spent some time grazing. Fleta's husband had arrived, so I got to meet him and we chatted while the horses grazed. It was about time for dinner, so we put the horses away and headed in.
I fed Storm and then headed back home to attack the laundry. Its expensive here! $1.25 for a wash, and $1.25 for 60 minutes in the dryer. I managed to get two loads done before I crashed into bed. It was nice to pull my sweatshirt out of the dryer and put it on all toasty.
I got to sleep in this morning, and the last load of laundry is finishing up right now. I need to head over to the clubhouse and see what they have for their $3.00 breakfast before I head over to the ranch to feed Storm and spend a little time playing.
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09.04.04: Lazy Day