With Scout a week back in turnout and no worse for the wear, I can dial down my vigilance over her. She's done with her sedatives and it will be a month before our next milestone, letting her rip out in the big pasture. That frees up my Figure-It-Out radar to zoom in on Dar. Decisions I think may have been made:
- Move him at the end of February, to a facility with an indoor arena. So we found one and went over to meet the owner and see the barn. There's one spot open. Mares and geldings are kept in separate paddocks and pastures. Oddly enough, I would be one of the youngest boarders there. Ha! How novel.
- Set up our training program, and begin it in March. I think I have four months to see what Dar is capable of. Not to train him all the way up, of course, but to discover how easily, or not, he can be trained and whether he responds positively to steady work. His precocious attitude, if left unchanged, will win him enemies and cost him friends. I want to believe consistent attention and hard work will settle him down.
- There was a pending question about running another testosterone test. Dr. B called today to say it wasn't necessary. The test that was done in September produced valid results. He's got nothing. If he has an issue with sex, it's happening between his ears, not his legs. (I guess that's true of many of us, horses or not.)
- I have to remember to keep reminding myself I have Dar on trial. I can't keep him if it doesn't make sense. I'm looking for the last horse of my life, the one I can ride from now until I'm 70. I need to keep him at arm's length to avoid a broken heart.
- I'm not afraid of Dar, and I don't have to assume that I ever will be. That means I have a chance to start clean with him. If I do choke, then I hope I will be able to understand why I did. For now, I don't need to bring my anxiety to him; there's no reason to. I have Red Death for that, if I absolutely have to scratch that itch.
Go, New Orleans Saints. Scout's my Saints horse, Dar's my Steelers horse.