I think I've decided that last Saturday just didn't happen. Dressage happened - yea! But, the rest of it, I'm sure it was just a bad dream! Last fall, as I was trying to decide with Dr. Kent Allen, what to do about the rest of my fall competition season - talking with the man who has cared for so many Rolex, Badminton, Burghley and Olympic bound ponies... I felt a bit silly almost crying about my hopes to finish out a full fall season at Training level. And Dr. Allen kindly said, "but that event is just as important to you as Rolex is to them". You know, he was right. And Saturday was important to me. But, it was one day, and now I have good news on all accounts to report. So, I'm putting it behind me and getting excited for the 2010 competition season to start - for real this time!
After mopping around the house Sunday morning, I gave it some good thought. And I decided I needed to see how Katchi felt, and if he felt okay, both of our confidence needed to jump a little. That little monster was rearing to go! I think he knew he was supposed to run XC the day before, and he didn't get to. I jumped him - no hind boots and nothing over about 3 feet - but he was brilliant. There wasn't a darn thing wrong with his jumping. Saturday just had to have been the boots. I definitely get the idiot of the weekend award.
More good news came on Monday with the truck - the mechanic checked out EVERYTHING and couldn't find anything wrong. They said I must have just sucked something into the fuel line and it had made its way out now. $10 for new windshield wipers and I was on my way. wow. When does that ever happen?! Especially with a 1989 beauty of a truck?! Rust and all... I love that truck!
I also ordered the new L'Apogee saddle - SO EXCITED!! I'm not sure if it will make it here before MCTA, but I sure hope so. Isn't waiting just so so unbearable?!
And yesterday, Katchi and I made the trek back to see Dr. Allen for the 6 month check-in. You know, that place is so funny - it's like an English pub. Hang around long enough and you'll run into all your friends! You have regulars. You have addicts. You have tourists (vet school applicants). I think all of Maryland was there yesterday, and I met some really great people! I guess the stress of pending equine and financial crisis makes people bond - sort of like being in a hostage situation and bonding with your fellow hostages! Anyhow... Katchi got all sorted out for the competition season, so we should be good to go. Actually, his legs were the easy part. It was his head that was a disaster!
You know how plastic bags sometimes warn parents about the risk of suffocation and that children should not be allowed to play with them? Katchi had a little cough a couple of months ago, and a little discharge from his nose the other day, so I asked if they could check out his lungs and see what they thought. Here comes young vet, Joey, with a white kitchen trash bag - Katchi thinks it sounds remarkably like a giant peppermint wrapper. Until Joey proceeds to wrap it around Katchi's nose, so he couldn't breathe. OMG! Katchi's eyes got so big, and he looked right at me - I CAN'T BREATHE!!!!!! I thought I was going to die right there. I guess I have some maternal instincts after all. After maybe 30 seconds (or a lifetime; either way), Joey took the bag off Katchi's nose and he took some really deep breaths so they could hear how his lungs sounded - all perfect. More good news! Angry horse though.
And then it got worse. Last fall, Katchi got a mysterious knot on his face - no idea what happened or how, but after several skull x-rays, we determined that he hadn't actually broken his face, so that was good. The knot is pretty well gone, but his eye has been watering for months. So, the vets wanted to flush his tear duct, suspecting that it was blocked - it was. Have you ever seen a tear duct be flushed? I've spent my whole life around horses, and I'd heard about this "routine" procedure, but I had NO idea what it really meant! Out comes a super thin tube, about 18 inches long. They insert it through a teeny tiny hole in the nostril, which runs all the way up to the eye!! How did I go all the way through the B-level in Pony Club and I never knew this - did I just forget or not care? Well, let me tell you, Katchi cared. They had to drug him like 3 times to keep him quiet for the process. And I took it upon myself to try to hold him up during the process. Good plan. Anyhow, he managed to - just barely - keep himself on 4 feet, and about 4 syringes of saline solution later, all this puss and ick finally came out his eye! The duct was totally blocked right about where the knot on his face is, and it was definitely impacted and infected. So badly that we're probably going to have to repeat this process in another 2 weeks or so, to be sure it's all cleared out. Great. Poor Katchi. He must hate me. But, he should be thankful - Joey was telling me later that with impacted sinuses that run along the same line, if they can't get them to flush - they use a saw... that's when I almost fell over. Really, did he have to say the word "saw"?! Apparently they saw into the horse's head and let everything drain out. He had to do the procedure in vet school once. Please let me never ever experience this.
This weekend, I'm at the Marlborough XC Schooling Day and Unrecognized HT helping some students - I hear they are really desperate for volunteers, so if anyone has a free few hours to volunteer (NO prior experience necessary!) - contact Donna, 301-503-8549, firstname.lastname@example.org I wish I could coach and volunteer, but I guess I'm not actually a super woman! Hope to see y'all out there!
Katchi goes to the Lucinda clinic on Tuesday & Wednesday of next week, so watch for updates from all that fun!!! I just love Lucinda! :)