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@redbadger I was raised on the OH/PA border and spent my first 50 years there.

Lancaster, PA has a huge Amish population. I actually remember when our local Amish sects were so depleted of “clean“ marrying blood, elders made a trip to Lancaster to bring back women - I am not kidding, lollol. I can’t remember exactly when that was but I was boarding my horses so it was sometime in the early 90’s. It was done on the QT but there were no secrets in the rural end of the county I lived in, if you knew who to ask, lollollol

Anyway, the Amish communities in and around Lancaster, PA area might be a decent place to inquire.

This might be a place to start. These folks may be Mennonite unless the Laws of the Amish have changed and they allow their pictures to be taken.

I am surprised to see a website promoting Amish trade but again, it may be a place to start an inquiry:)

 

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Discussion Starter · #183 ·
Well this is a bit of a monkey wrench. The BO, who can be ... cantankerous, let's say, lost his temper and fired my trainer (who is also a trail guide and barn help) on Saturday. I'm upset on her behalf (her income! her horse!) and I think the BO will regret it, but I also feel (rather selfishly, I know) sad, and nervous because even if we don't really do lessons anymore (Jasper thinks the ring is a Crime Against Horse) she's a guide and mentor. I know we go out alone all the time, but it's nice to have someone there to hash things out with (and show off to). :(

This doesn't change my leasing situation - I'm still leasing him, and allegedly the BO is acquiring a few more horses (there was a new one there on Monday). But now I don't think we'll get to go to the hunter pace (so selfish, I know, I'm sorry) because I'd have to find someone to drive us. (I could hire my trainer to do it, as she has her own trailer, but I'm sure that would cause friction...) Anyway. We will keep working at what we can, though. (I say we: he is much better at this than I am.)

It's supposed to be much, much cooler tomorrow after the rain. Monday was bad - we left the barn at 8:30am, were out for about 45 minutes at a walk on largely level terrain, and he still came back soaked. (of course, he still would not deign to drink freshly filled inside water, but shoved his head in the outside tubs IMMEDIATELY on being turned out.)
 

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I am so sorry to hear this turn of events - especially if it was unexpected and came out of nowhere. I hope the BO didn’t “cut his nose to spite his face“ as the saying goes.

I hope you can forge ahead with Jasper, in that the next person doesn’t try to reduce your time with Jasper ——- or maybe the BO will see the error of his ways and being your trainer back:)

Keep us posted, please:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #186 ·
Word on the street is he was angry because the folks who bought the (so far) unrideable TWH are going to move to another barn (they already have a TWH and a warmblood). They were (at least the mom was) going to be, ah, stressful owners anyway - they decided they didn't like our shavings, so they bought their own, and then demanded no other horse be allowed to use the stall at all. (As in, during the day when horses are out and the barn is doing trail rides and other things). Anyway he accused the barn staff of "costing [him] another boarder" and there was a fight. The BO can be a hotheaded old man and I believe he will regret this. There are two women who love Jasper (they don't lease - only ride every month or two) I think only liked to ride with my trainer. (A few of the regulars do).

Since I endeavor to stay under the radar and carefully neutral with the BO and others I don't think there's bias against me and I'm largely outside the drama. I just want to spend time with Jasper in peace. Nothing complicated. If I owned him, I suppose I would have his teeth looked at and maybe look into something for his arthritis (which might be less aggravated with one person riding him regularly). But he is healthy, in good shape, alert and seems content, so I am happy.

I was not able to physically ride today (but, medicine has figured some things out and I should be back to normal soon), but I visited to drop off his lease check and give him breakfast and brush time. I think he was a bit confused and perhaps disappointed not to go out with me. I had a time getting him out - the TWH is getting aggressive in a way that will quickly become dangerous. The young woman who owns Chief (the absolute mildest QH, a labrador with hooves) had to distract him so I could bring Jas in.
 

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Well that’s a barn soap opera drama in the making:cry: If folks really like your trainer/friend, maybe they will speak up to the BO about bringing her back.

Yes it is best if you can avoid being made to take sides and stay neutral.

This ^^^^ is the picture of two people who should be together permanently:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #189 ·
I mean, I also wouldn't blame her if she didn't want to come back. The BO can be a right jerk, and she's put up with a lot from him.

As a paramedic (and having worked in customer service) I've become uncomfortably practiced at a kind of earnest neutrality. The sort of countenance you put on when someone is clearly crazy or wildly out of bounds, but you need to keep them calm and maintain at least a semblance of professionalism. :lol:

Isn't he a stunner? It's hard to get a good photo of his face, because it's roughly the size of a smart car and my arms are simply not that long. And he doesn't like having his picture taken, sneaky old fellow. But that's a thinking face and I love him for it. Always looking over at me like "Hm. What're you up to over there?" Lots going on in those old-man eyes. I like to wonder what he knows. (I'm a romantic.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #191 ·
Update: still not mine. I'm ... let's say a little frustrated (ok, more than a little). It's been a long week (had to work on my birthday, had a long night and got out an hour and a half late). I usually ride on Thursday morning, but because there were already trail rides scheduled in the morning (and the kid who guides doesn't put in who he's using) I put myself in the schedule book for 4pm today. Like, quite clearly, right there. The ponykid - who is now taking out pretty much all the trail rides, since my trainer was fired (and, sure, put your business in the hands of a 16 year old, be my guest) - had already untacked, fed, and turned out Jasper. So I then had an absolute time with him, because of course, his brain recognizes that naked+food+field=all done working. He balked and balked and balked, and we didn't even make it down to the meadow. So I was frustrated with myself, and furious at the ponykid for putting him back out when he knew full well that I was on the schedule. In fact, he'd just finished turning Jasper out as I got there at like 3:45. I know I shouldn't let Jasper get away with being a knucklehead, but I'm exhausted and all I wanted was a nice, peaceful ride with my buddy. And I'm frustrated that I couldn't make him get into gear, and that it feels like he's never going to be mine. Every time the BO buys a new horse, I swear, it's either unrideable or too small - he just bought a grey mare a couple of weeks ago, but she's a light-framed lady and only about 15hh. It's driving me wild.

It's not Jasper's fault. We'll try again Monday. He got some double-barrel ear scratches (he puts his head down, and I scratch-scratch-scratch in his ears until he snorts and shakes, he seems to enjoy this). He's lucky he's pretty.
 

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I hit “like” based on your last paragraph and to acknowledge I read - the - entire - post.

Genius move on the part of the BO — putting a 16 year old in charge of something as serious as leading a trail ride of people on his horseso_O:poop:o_O:poop:

Happy Birthday and the mom in me says to get some sleep, tomorrow will be better(y)(y)
 

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Discussion Starter · #193 ·
I'm not disparaging 16 year olds by any stretch, but god love them, their brains just aren't finished cooking yet. They can make some pretty good decisions and some pretty bad ones. (I qualify "leading a ride out when it's definitely thundering" as a bad decision, which apparently he did the other day.) My trainer (I guess my friend now) suggested maybe after hard work day in and day out the kid'll get a sense of the not-so-fun parts of barn life.

Tropical Storm Elsa, such as she is, is moving through today. As long as the winds aren't bad, the horses will be fine and filthy.
 

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My favorite phrase for teenagers is “you just don’t have the street smarts yet”.

My good friend’s husband’s favorite phrase is “you ain’t got the seniority to decide on certain issues”

(y):cool:(y):cool:
 

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Discussion Starter · #195 ·
Consequences are hard to grasp for teenagers. Like, why you really shouldn't go out when there's thunder. The other thing that worries me as a paramedic is that emergencies can be very hard to handle - even as an adult with experience and emotional resources. If someone takes a fall, or has a seizure, or some other medical issue, you've now got three or four other adults, and horses, along with an injured person, out in the middle of the woods. (admittedly, none of our woods are very far from civilization, but it still takes resources and coordination!) He's got a drag rider for the four and five person rides, I think, but she's still a teenager, too. I'm nervy but I think it's a disaster waiting to happen. (and that's not the hand of fate I really want to come smacking down on a kid.)

One of these days the BO's gonna get a couple lazy old draft crosses and I'm gonna plunk down a check and Jasper's never going to have to worry about teenage nonsense again. (Except, there are two women who are also fond of him, and they could ride him as long as they asked me first. They ride rarely, and one of them doesn't want to come back unless my trainer does.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #196 ·
Update: no, I still don't own him. (is he my horse, in the sense I ride and love him more than anyone else, and we are partners? yes.) But, we had a much better ride this time. Monday the rain was horrendous (it's been a very wet July for us so far). The trails were not as ghastly as I thought - half mud, half "the rain has washed everything down to pine needles and clay". The bugs, though, are the devil's messengers and we both hate them. We just had a walk, due to trail conditions, didn't do our little jumps, and he was a good listener, even though he wanted to speed up at the usual places. (Are you sure, he says, are you SURE you don't want to run? Well I do want to run, but sir, neither of us wants to fall.) The river/creek is too high and too fast to cross - even from the trail, you can see the bubbles from the current along the deepest part. What I need to learn is to get across the street to the opposite hills with him - but I haven't been there in FOREVER, and I'm afraid to go by ourselves. I don't know how he feels about it, I haven't asked. But that would be a good thing to try, since we can't cross the river until it comes down.

We had some visitors at the barn (I think there was a pony ride miscommunication), couple of kids and their moms. He was much admired and stuffed with apples. The bigger kid did something like a snapchat on his phone with a picture of Jasper on the cross ties and the text REALLY BIG HORSE written on it, which was delightful.

I'd gotten a couple of pears to try and give him, because he's had some trouble with crunchy stuff and I thought maybe he'd like a softer treat. He sniffed it, seemed to say, "what the heck is that?" and ignored it. He has opinions, he does (the other day he was interested in an otter pop/tube popsicle I was eating, but when I tried to give him a piece he was offended by how cold it was). Comet, another horse (a little old man of a quarter horse) took it and chewed it thoughtfully: "This is the strangest apple I've ever eaten." I gave some to Lavinia, the morgan mare, and she thought it was AMAZING and would've eaten them all day. Funny creatures.
 

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At least the two of you are still sharing adventures and sort-of popsicles.

If Jasper is having trouble breaking off apples, you might see if the BO will let you put a sign on his door to please not feed him due to Senior age tooth issues. Choke would be a huge worry if he misses a chew and a big piece were to get stuck in his throat.

You could always chunk the apple into bite sized pieces at home, and put them in a container for you and Jasper to share once you get to the barn:)

FWIW I never did have a horse who liked pears but my Arab/Saddlebred was so crazy for blackberries he figured out how to pick them off the bush without getting his lips pricked, lol.
 

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All my horses like pears. I didn't know that some horses don't. Some horses like banana peels and some don't. They have to learn to like watermelon, probably because it feels cold. I would bet my horses would scarf down popsicles. Chorro and Windy love strawberry tops, but Isabeau and Acicate won't eat them.
 

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Here is a funny food treat story. My parents had a beef cattle farm in Melbourne, Florida, and on the side they had citrus trees too. When my niece was 6 years old, she flew to Florida to spend a month with her grandparents on the farm.

Soon after she arrived, my mom was showing her the farm. She stopped at a tangerine tree, picked a couple and let my niece reach through the fence and feed them to the cows. Our cows and horses love oranges and tangerines.

A few days later, my niece told my mom she had fed more tangerines to the cows. My mom thought that was cute until she went outside and discovered my niece had picked every single tangerine off every tree and fed them to the cows.

A few months later, each tangerine tree had about 6 or 8 absolutely HUGE tangerines up too high for my niece to reach.
 
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