28 Years, 362 Days.

Man, I am super impressed with SmartPak's customer service.

I sent them an email on Friday because Archie's new bit, the Happy Mouth Double-Jointed Roller Dee, had a crack in the plastic - towards the center, where, you know, there aren't many teeth but there is a whole lot of tongue.  He's only had it less than four months.  (It shipped out June 15th.)

They sent me a reply this morning that they were sorry it happened, that occasionally the plastic can tear from being chomped, but that it definitely shouldn't happen this soon.  And, without sending back the jacked up bit, they credited my account for the cost.  So, now I'm torn:  do I get another of the same bit or do I try something different, like the Happy Mouth Shaped Mullen Loose Ring?  Or the Mullen Dee Ring?  He really doesn't need a lot of bit and gets pissed off pretty easily.  I just read up on Mullen bits.  No tongue relief.  Scratch that.  We'll continue with the same bit and hope this one doesn't crap out prematurely.

I think I might also look into a bitless set on eBay.

I rode him yesterday morning (with a forecasted high of 88, of course the stall doors were closed!), in the dressage saddle.  I just.. wanted to do something different.  We did our normal walking warm up, followed by three laps at a working trot.  Then I gave him about a lap to cool down a bit (that little, tiny winter coat is roasting him) and did another lap of the sitting collected trot.  Reverse and repeat.  I've worked with him more on the extended trot, so it was fun to try to enforce the whole slow-down,-but-don't-stop concept.  We have done collected before, primarily when working on lateral movements.  I don't feel as comfortable doing lateral work in our piece of shit, stick and manure infested pasture.  God, I need a new barn.

Anyways, I worked really hard on staying tall, getting my legs long, opening my hip and not immobilizing it.  If I'm asking him to collect and bounce me all over his back, the least I can do is be putty and not a brick.

Yesterday was sort of a whirlwind.  I rode.  D left to get his hair cut while I cleaned up.  I went by Ulta's and bought some new hair products that I love: Not Your Mother's.  No animal testing and only one product contains animal ingredients/byproducts: silk.  Then lunch at Atlanta Bread (mm.. soupy bread bowl..), Taken 2 at the movies (LOVED IT!  Liam can teach me to drive!), and a weird hour to kill.  I didn't really want to go anywhere, so D headed home and I went on to the soccer field and read in my car.

We got our butts kicked in the soccer game.  We had one new player who only spoke Spanish.  And our top three forwards were absent.  I had a really good time, though.  I took a ball to the thigh and to the head. But not the jaw!  And I only got yelled at once.  (I had the ball.  The captain yelled that someone was coming hard.  In the time it took me to try to get rid of the ball, the hard comer stole it.  And I got yelled at. Seriously?  Fuck off; it's a game.)

After the massacre, I went and ran six miles for a total of twenty miles this week.  Then Mexican for dinner and lounging on the couch.  I'm working on some stuff and I am super excited.  I'll share more as soon as I'm no longer concerned about jinxing myself.  :)

A front view of our little friend.
My RES, Pokey, through the top screen.  
We went to a seafood place.  This was our spectacular view.

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