Archives for October 2013

Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013 – Another Rest Day

Woke up a half pound lighter, though I figured that would happen even without the diet, having gotten back to my usual food after a week of eating in restaurants, or out of a hotel microwave. Spent the day working on the computer again, with Hubby in bed again for part of the day, feeling only marginally better than yesterday, still needing more sleep. Rained off and on all day, sometimes torrentially, with mud everywhere. I put the horses on anchors just to get them out of the corral, with is quickly become ankle-deep in mud. Other than that, an uneventful day, though I still felt like I spent the day eating! Strange diet, can’t wait to see if it really works!

Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013 – Mostly a Rest Day

Got up around 9:00 to tend the horses, then spent most of the rest of the day on the computer or reading. Hubby slept a few hours longer, then got up feeling lousy, so after breakfast he went back to bed. Got up in the late afternoon feeling better, and worried that if he slept too much today, he wouldn’t be able to sleep tonight. I started a Nutri-systems program today, trying to get off the extra 10-15 pounds I’ve gained in the last year, it seems like I ate more food today than I ever have before! Very curious to see how THAT works out! Spent the evening relaxing before turning in, both of us still feeling quite exhausted, that deep, down, muscle-ache kind of tired that only rest can cure, so we intend to do that during this cloudy, rainy spell.

Monday, October 28, 2013 – Travel Day to Eisenhower SP in Kansas

What a crazy night! We were in bed before 10, but we both woke up abruptly when we heard some clunking and felt the RV shaking. When I looked out my window to the barnyard, where it was lit up like daylight anyway, we were surrounded by cattle munching the grass around us. Most had horns, and some even were longhorns, so between the horns and their swishing tails, we were getting good and thumped! Nothing we could do about it, and eventually they wandered off, so we got back to sleep after a while. They came thumping around again at 8:00, which forced us to get up despite plans to sleep a bit later, which was probably just as well anyway. We got up and quickly went to work packing up and moving out. We were on the road by 9:30, with stops at Costco so Hubby could pick up an earbud for his hearing aid, which he had lost a few days ago, grabbed a meal at BK (just missing breakfast), stopped at Tractor Supply for oats and senior feed, and finally at Walmart. From there we drove to the Eisenhower State Park near Malvern Lake. We stopped at the office, but were told to go select a site, then come back to register, which we did. Registration, like in so many state parks, was a complete pain in the butt. They asked for more information that anyone purchasing a week of camping should ever be forced to answer, including our Social Security number! I refused to give them that one, wondering what on earth they needed that for, and would you believe it had to do with finding deadbeat dads who didn’t pay their child support? Apparently they collect them, then submit them to another government agency who lets them know if there are any outstanding child support issues, in which case the state park is supposed to refuse to sell them anything! The clerk told me that in her 14 years, they had actually caught 3 people. Can you imagine, collecting all those social security numbers of completely innocent people, putting their identities at risk of being stolen, just because the court system is so pathetic it can’t catch up with three guys who owe money? Ridiculous! She also wanted Hubby’s birthday, and refused to let me purchase the camping without it! How I LONG for the days when all they did was say “how much” and all I had to do was pay them. This only seems to happen at state parks, but I honestly thought a state like Kansas would be a little less bureaucratic and a little more appreciative of freedom. Plus they made us pay for an annual vehicle pass, another way to pump up the coffers for no real reason. I really dislike state parks. I walked into that office in a good mood, and by the time I left (and it took over 20 minutes!) I was miserably, feeling like a criminal. No question, government is sticking its nose WAY too much into our lives. Anyway, enough of my rant. I got back to camp (Hubby was starting to get worried something had happened to me), and we finished setting up. None of the sites are very level, so we had to put boards down under the back wheels of the RV, and the corral that the horses are in is a bit on a slope as well. A little while later, another ranger came by and told me he had accidentally credited our account while he was giving a refund to someone else, so not to be surprised when it showed up, but that makes me REALLY wonder about how long they hang onto credit card numbers. I thought they were supposed to disappear right after a purchase was made, at least that’s what I have to do when I collect money through my merchant account. Anyway, at least he didn’t say anything when the dogs came out and said hello. We finally settled in for the evening, utterly exhausted, coming down from all our activities from the past week. The forecast is calling for rain for the next 2 or 3 days, so lots of rest and laundry are in order.

Sunday, October. 27, 2013 – Back to Kansas City

After a week of working, shuttling between hotels, taking on extra clients and generally doing the usual, mundane, non-horsey things for the past week, we were happy to get back on a plane at Reagan National and head back to Kansas City. We had a later flight, thank goodness, had plenty of time to sleep until 9:30, have the complimentary breakfast at the Embassy Suites Old Town Alexandria, grab a cab make our way through the airport, all in record time. Flight was on time and non-stop, so we arrived on time, happy to get back to all our four-legged kids! Finally met our hostess Beka, checked up on everyone, of course the dogs wriggled themselves nearly inside out when they saw us! My good old Apollo whinnied when I called him, because they had moved them again and we couldn’t find them, but as soon as I heard him, we were able to locate them in a paddock a little further along. Soon got settled in, partly unpacked, completely exhausted, and were ready to head to bed early, though being still on Eastern time, it seemed later.

Sunday, Oct. 20, 2013 – Rest Day

Slept until 9:00, Hubby up first for a change, down to breakfast for their buffet (management had given us coupons because of our long wait yesterday), then spent the afternoon preparing for tomorrow.

Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013 – Travel Day to DC

With the alarm ringing at 3:30 am, our day began early! Quickly got dressed, finalized our packing and headed out the door by juast after 4:00, not leaving too much time for a margin of error. Unfortunately, that was tested as we discoverd the freeway exit we needed was closed, and we had to take a detour that took us several miles out of way, but with no traffic, that didn’t take long. We arrived at the Clarion, which offers off-site parking for almost half the price of the airport, had a nice chat with the night clerk until the shuttle driver returned. It didn’t take long to check-in, a bit longer to get through security, though for some reason they gave us a pink card that meant I didn’t have to take off my jacket or shoes, though Hubby did because he had to have a patdown, just because of his defibrillator, but it didn’t take any longer than usual. No breakfast places were open, not that our stomachs were ready yet anyway, nor did we really have time. Loading began about 15 minutes after we arrived, and we were in the air before we knew it. Had coffee and snacks (all they had), an uneventful flight, arrived by 9:30 local time, and arrived at the hotel by 10. Unfortunately, no rooms were ready, so we would have to wait. By now, we were starving, so we put our baggage in storage and headed to the hotel restaurant for breakfast. Room still a long way from ready, so we took the shuttle over to Pentagon row, and did some grocery shopping. Got back by 12:30, room still not ready. Sat around the lobby for another hour+ before they finally got us into our room. By now we were exhausted, and rested most of the day, with Indian from Marsala Express delivered, watched a couple of movies on Showtime, including War Horse, which we had seen the stage play on Broadway back in Oct. 2011. Nicely done by Spielberg, though there were several production elements which we didn’t agree with, it was still very worthwhile. Finally got to bed after 10:00, ready for some serious sleep!

Friday, Oct. 18, 2013 – Travel Day to Belle Star Ranch

Woke up to the alarm, cold and dark outside, pretty overcast, but we finally managed to crawl out of bed and get our butts in gear. Out of the campground by 8:15, stops at Tractor Supply, where Hubby found a much needed new saddle blanket, Walmart for a few essentials, McD’s for breakfast (only because there wasn’t anything else around), then finally arriving at the Belle Star Ranch where the horses will be boarded. A large, very busy facility, probably the busiest horse ranch we’ve ever been to. Unfortunately, it started raining, and actually then we got frozen rain, so I immediately covered up the hay in the pickup, and we had to do everything socked in with this cold, frozen rain, not what the forecast had called for!! Got the horses settled in the barn, a large stall, though they later got moved to another stall, with a turn out paddock where they can come and go as they please, so they should be happy. Got the RV settled in, satellite dish up, hooked up to electric, filled with water, promptly started a load of laundry so we would could pack asap, then spent the afternoon packing and feeding Hubby every anti-cold remedy I could find, as he started coming down with something, no doubt from working outside in the cold rain. Finally got everything done, instructions to the young man who will be looking after our guys while we’re gone, and settled in by about 6:00. Plans are to go to bed REALLY early, as we have to get up REALLY early to catch a 6 am flight. Not my favorite, but it was the only non-stop to DC from KC, and that was more important than hopping up and down. At least we’ll have two days to recover before we begin working on Monday!

Thursday, Oct. 17, 2013 – Prep Day

Slept really late this morning, trying to put a few deposits in our sleep bank before a busy week next week. Did some chores and repairs in the afternoon, packing stuff away for our early departure tomorrow morning. Just another day on the trail!

Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013 – Second (and last) Ride at Honey Creek

Slept good and late again (as we have for the last few days), so after brunch we saddled up and headed out, this time back tracking the first part of our last ride, leaving by the outhouses. We bundled up, though, as the temps were only in the fifties, and it was pretty cloudy and damp. I thought I heard a little rain this morning, so we were a little worried about the trail conditions, but this may be our last chance to ride, so we headed out anyway. We quickly took a shortcut, though, we’ve discovered the “side” trails are actually just as good, and in some cases better than the main trails, as the lighter traffic sometimes made the trails less slippery. We didn’t want to take too long a ride today, as we have a long week ahead of us next week, so after the first shortcut, we just followed the A/Red trail all around the north side of the park, often getting so close to the freeway we could not only hear it, but see it as well. There are several stretches of trail that they’ve put stone down, obviously to ameliorate the slippage problem, but the stones are HUGE, not like gravel at all, just stone from a riverbed or something, mostly about 8-12 inches in diameter, so the horses didn’t like them much. It’s only marginally better than mud, but that could be a close call! Passed by a really huge old oak tree, 300 years old at least, judging by the diameter of the trunk. Anyway, it was a short ride, under four miles, but we did manage to canter once or twice on some ridges through open fields where it was dry enough. Got back to camp, put everyone out to graze again, and relaxed for the rest of the evening.

Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013 – Work Day

We had considered riding today, but after the rain yesterday, we decided to let it dry out today, so we spent the day working on the computer and reading again, proving that even when you’re living your dream, there are still days that are just simply mundane!