dancing horses

dancing horses

Sunday, March 3, 2024

There and Back Again

 In my last post I shared that I had arranged for someone to transport Quaid home. This eased a lot of planning and contingency planning.  My plan was to go up on Thursday and get the update from Mike and Nikki and to ride Quaid. He was to be picked up at noon on Friday so I thought I might get another ride in that morning too.  Once Quaid was home I was going to hitch up my trailer and go get Carmen. 

New Ride

As a plan it was solid.  And things began to fall into place with the dealer accepting our offer on a 2018 Toyota Tundra.  Ed arranged to pick it up Thursday. Of course, it being the end of February we had some weather- heavy rain followed by a drop in temperatures. There were so many warnings about driving and ice but in the end it was perfectly fine. Most of my journey was on bare pavement and even a few sunny skies. But the winds were high which meant my shipper had to cancel a transport to PEI (the bridge closes to high sided vehicles in high winds). He reached out to see if he could pick up Quaid on Thursday at 2. But I told him that that wouldn't work for me. If I went along with that there would be no way for me to ride. So we agreed to an early morning pick up on Friday. I figured that would be fair, because I know that he has to make a living too. 

When I arrived on Thursday afternoon the winds were high and you could really hear it in the arena. Quaid was quite naturally excited. There were also cows in the arena for some penning practice later. Quaid was adorable checking them out. 

Quaid: hello do they ride you too?'
Cattle: "no they ride you to chase us around'

Nikki watched us working through the ground work and gave me some excellent pointers about my body language. Then, when he was settled, we tacked him up and I got on.  Not gonna lie, it felt wonderful to swing a leg over him. I tried to be cool but inside I was squealing like a 12 year old. 

 He was really good for a total green bean. It was definitely a lot to process to remember how to ride a green horse.  But his gaits are very comfortable. You can see all the things around there that he just didn't care about. 

While I was riding another horse came in for a vet check. The vet also had a baby in a stroller. He did take this all in stride but we were both getting a little excited. So Mike asked if he could get on and I hopped off. I'm glad I did because he was able to demonstrate that the issue was that I was being too wishy washy and Quaid had a bit too much energy still. Mike worked him down and it was great to watch him be 100% clear on what he wanted and to see Quaid go 'oh okay'. 

I got back on and did a little more riding before calling it a day.  I spent a lovely night staying at Mike and Nikki's and meeting their wonderful daughter.  The next morning the weather was sunny but so freaking cold and windy. It was impossible to walk outside without saying 'fuuuuck'. It felt like your face was being peeled off. Quaid was not too happy in the morning. Nikki loaned me a blanket for the trailer because of the temperature and it was a stock style trailer. The shipper was right on time and we loaded Quaid on without issue. Once on he pawed a lot. But the journey was uneventful. The shipper told me that every time they stopped he was stomping his feet. But he unloaded quietly and as soon as he walked in the barn you could see him go 'oh I'm home. Great'.  The barn was empty but he seemed unfazed. 

I didn't want to leave him alone though so I was waiting for Ed to come home. I thought that while I was waiting I figured I would hook up the trailer and be ready to go get Carmen. The truck was really easy to line up with the back up camera on the huge screen. But when I went to plug in the electric the receptacle seemed a bit loose. I plugged in and check my lights. 
No lights. 
I unplugged and pushed it back in . 
No lights. 

I was NOT happy. I called the dealership:
Hello how can I help you. 
Hi, I am Teresa ____ and I bought a truck YESTERDAY and it is not working. I am NOT HAPPY AND I NEED TO SPEAK TO SOMEONE IN CHARGE NOW.  (I was not yelling but I was very emphatic). 
I went on hold and then someone came no the line (turned out to be the owner). 
I told him that I had bought a truck for the specific purpose of trailering. I was very clear on that. And I was trying to hook up my trailer and it was not working. He was to fix this and I was not driving back to the dealership (it was over an hour away). 
To give him credit he agreed with me on everything and asked to have a few minutes to work a solution. IN the meantime I still had Jane's truck and literally no choice so I brought it down to hook up.  

While I was doing this (and Ed helping), I got a call back and asked to take my truck to the Toyota dealer in town and they would cover the cost of repairs. 

I had the trailer hooked up and left to get Carmen. By now I'm a lot flustered. I hate being flustered. Anyway I get to the barn where Carmen is and realise that I don't have the keys to the trailer. 


I call Ed and ask him to bring them to me and to take the truck to the dealer. He arrives and gives me the keys. I unlock the trailer and go to get Carmen. 

Now I have owned Carmen since 2015. She has never refused to load for me. Ever. 

Except for this day. When she walked on the trailer and flew off backward with a wild eye. And she would not get back on. After about 10 minutes of her going sideways, pulling back and generally being a wild thing I was really starting to question my life choices. 

Like I could be on a beach right now sipping margaritas, instead of this shit. What is wrong with me. 

I called Stephanie but she was about 30 minutes away.  I took a deep breath do what you know I thought. And so I worked with Carmen like she had never seen a trailer before. We rested on or near the trailer and every attempt to flee resulted in work. I got her on, back her off and then got her to go on her own. I took her off again and then the next time I closed the butt bar.  

(I have done a lot of thinking about this. I think that I was not in a good place when I was trying to load her because I was flustered by the truck debacle. But I also think (and a sniff test confirmed later) that the trailer still smelled of smoke and I think it caused her to panic. )

Once on she was was fine and unloaded like the trained horse she was. I walked her into the barn to be greeted quietly by Quaid. They sniffed noses and then she gave a little squeal and I put her in her stall. Once she was in I headed into the house to rest. 

This is why I drink, is an alternate title for this blog post. 

The next day I was careful about turning them out because they had been apart for a month and I didn't want any fireworks. So I put a halter on Carmen to make sure she didn't get aggressive. But it was a non-event. Quaid didn't even canter around. He was a totally different horse than the one I saw that morning. This was the horse I knew- happy, quiet, friendly. 

I love having them home again

My ring is thawing but too soft right now to work them. Which is, I think, fine,  It gives us time to settle back into the routine. 

Oh and the truck- the recptacle being loose caused the relay to blow. It is being replaced this week. Af first they tried to say it must have been my trailer. Until Ed pointed out that the trailer was hooked up to another truck and worked just fine. *eyeroll* Yes I am a girl but I know what I'm doing.  I am not happy that this was not caught but I am happy that they owned up to it and weren't dicks about it. 


  1. That would have really pissed me off, too. I also haul with a Toyota Tundra, and mine has never let me down. I have the 2019 ranch edition, and love it. They are, generally, great trucks. I'm not sure what happened to make the receptacle loose like that. We have a Dodge truck that the receptacle has caused us a lot of problems though, and seems to work itself loose more often. I'll have to compare the two. Nothing is more annoying than a faulty hook up.

    You made me laugh about being on the beach. Believe me, I have thought that more than once myself. Yes, some days they do drive you to drink!

    1. I’m glad to hear you like the tundra. To be honest it’s been my dream truck. There was a broken clip on the receptacle so I suspect someone stood on the plug when it was plugged in.

  2. ummmmmm i'll cheers to that??? lol for real tho, looking beyond the vehicle stress and the smells-like-smoke-so-no-thanks-am-wild-animal-now-and-obvi-can't-load stress.... honestly there's a LOT of really exciting stuff here!!! you look legitimately AT HOME sitting on Quaid, so excited for this next chapter for you! and also seriously i know the trailer issue with Carmen probably felt the worst kind of way in the moment, but how cool to know that even when it kinda sucked, you had the answers and tools you needed!

    1. Thank you! That definitely helps me put it in perspective.

  3. Trailer lights, man. It's always a problem at the worst possible moment.

  4. Like Emma said.
    Love seeing you on Quaid, it's going to be fun watching your partnership with him grow. He seems to be pretty sensible for a young horse.
    Interesting comment about the wishy-washy- that is so me when I am trying to avoid a confrontation with a horse, especially when I know better. I am blaming it on my aging.

    1. He is pretty sensible. And I am similar about confrontation.

  5. Heck fire man! Today is a new day and I might have a cocktail for you! Here is to having them home and living the dream!

  6. Oh man, what an ordeal! I'm sure you're right about the trailer smelling scary to Carmen. She's a smart girl and was probably just not feeling safe. But I love that you took a deep breath and worked through the problem.
    You look so great on Quaid! He's really maturing, and I'm so excited for your future with him!

    1. It was a flustercluck of a day but we all made it.

  7. All is well that ends well. What we go through to get there is another story. Glad everyone is home safe and sound!

  8. The truck thing is so frustrating. I was grinding my teeth reading this. I will have to share my never ending BRAND NEW TRAILER saga. The dealership we are working with has not been nearly as helpful as the one you bought the truck from. UGH!!!!!

    I am so glad all ended well, but what a wild chain of events.

    Also HOORAY FIRST RIDE!!! How very exciting. Cannot wait to see many more.

    1. I am so sorry you’re having trouble with your trailer. That sucks.


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