Tuesday, August 3, 2010

More Characters at the Park.........The Mule Skinner

I never know what kind of equines I'm going to encounter at the park. Some days I get in and out of there seeing nary a soul. Other days it's a zoo with all shapes, sizes and colors of horses and riders. Some times there are already people working when I arrive and other times I start off by myself only to end up with a dozen horses still working when I leave.

One morning shortly after my backyard guests had moved in, I arrived at the park to see a lone truck parked in my usual spot right up close to the smaller warm-up pen. The trailer was an older stock type trailer and I could see critters inside. The truck's driver was still sitting behind the wheel so I didn't really now whether he was coming or going.

Still I went around and parked my rig on the opposite side of the parking lot. I wanted to utilize the perimeter fence as a barrier behind my horse since I couldn't park by the warm-up. It's not that Legs does anything naughty while tied to the horse trailer. It's just that I think making it a habit to use barriers is good since I mostly school young inexperienced horses.

I got out of my truck and the driver in the other rig was still just sitting there. I wondered what might be the reason but still kept myself on task. I unlocked my tack room, hung a bungee tie for Legs and put on my riding boots before getting Legs from the trailer.

By the time I was finished and led my horse out from behind the horse trailer, I could see two large mules tied to the stock trailer. They were already tacked up with some kind of pack rig, I believe. The man with them was doing something with one of the mules still tied to his trailer.

As I got closer to the arena with Legs, the man untied one of the mules heading for the smaller arena. I was curious about the type of rigging the mule was wearing but didn't really get close enough to even describe it other than it was on the body of the mule and looked like it went clear around it's backside. I did see the mule was wearing a bridle over a rope halter and it looked like the man had driving lines.

I took Legs over to our usual "mounting rock." I lined the horse up with the huge boulder before I stepped onto it. Then just as I went to step in place, Legs decided to turn to get a better look at that mule. A little swift discipline and Legs assumed the correct position and I climbed on board. We headed for the far end of the arena to go to work.

Throughout our warm-up I caught glimpses of the mule and the man working in the smaller arena. More than once I saw a mule running loose dragging those lines behind but I didn't really pay enough attention to be able to tell you what he was trying to accomplish with those mules nor do I know how they were managing to get loose.

I did see enough to think this was a wreck just waiting to happen. I wasn't sure what kind of a wreck but it did seem to me that this man didn't know all that much about what he was trying to do. As much as I tried to keep my focus on schooling my horse in the back of my mind was this nagging thought I needed to be on alert.

To be continued................

The Escape

Visit Blog Village and vote daily for this blog Here They are now measuring the rankings by the number of votes out, so if you find my blog on the site, please click that link too to improve my rankings. TY

1 comment:

  1. Oh my, I can just imagine where this is going! I do hope everything turned out okay though and that no one was hurt. Doesn't it make you nervous to see something like this and know it's just an accident waiting to happen?!!

    Hope the show goes well and that you don't have any major problems. Hopefully the stabling issue was it!

    I too like high 60's and low 70's, just perfect weather for riding or anything outside. It's VERY hot here and has been all summer. Very humid too which is what I don't handle very well. Have had a few lightening storms but no hits thankfully. I can see my barn out my bedroom window so keep a close eye on it when there is lightening.