I don’t even think I can express how excited I am to go to Ocala. Partly because I want to see Presto and partly because my ass just hasn’t been anywhere since August 2019 and I am legit dying for a change of scenery. The wanderlust is intense. It’s just Florida, but… I will 100% take what I can get.
Of course the big reason for Bobby coming along with me was so that he could try horses. He’s been shopping for a while, and after some vetting issues and just plain old mismatches, he wasn’t having a ton of luck locally. We found some promising looking horses in Ocala so we booked the trip accordingly, started making plans, and lining up horses to try. Then… a twist. He looked at a horse a few weeks ago locally, absolutely loved it, vetted it, and made an appropriate offer according to the results and how the vet felt about it. The owners declined the offer, which was a bummer but okay totally fair. Then last week they came back and accepted Bobby’s offer, to his great delight, and a few days later – tada new horse! And it does seem like the perfect horse for him, he loves him, they’re off to a promising start.
But now of course there’s no need to look at horses in Ocala, since he just got one (and for some reason refuses to buy me one with all the leftover budget he had? Rude AF.). Okay, let’s pivot. What he doesn’t have is a lot of equipment for the new horse, and while Ocala isn’t dripping with tack shops they certainly have more than we do (we’ve got… Dover. Period.) AND there’s a dressage show going on at WEC this weekend, which should draw some vendors too. We can get all the stuff he needs in one fell swoop and have more variety than we do here, so it works. Plus, like, if I have one single talent in the entire world, it’s spending other people’s money. I was born for this job.
And I needed to hit some tack shops too, because I’d really like to find a new girth for my jump saddle for Henry but I’m so picky that buying them online hasn’t worked well for me. I settled on a synthetic memory foam girth for him last year and felt really meh about it, and it’s already looking worn and frayed at the edges.
I’d really like to find him a good soft, well-padded leather one if I can. I’m also starting to think about things like show pads for Presto, so if I found any good deals I could go for those too. We shall see. I also really wanted to get my eyeballs and hands on the Ikonic saddles that Tack Shack is carrying now, since I’ve never seen one in person yet. They might be an option for Presto’s next saddle (probably next year) if I like them. So, now we have a big priority to hit any and all tack shops, which is not exactly a hardship for me.
The original reason for the Ocala trip was to see Presto of course, and get a bit more video for his May futurity vlog. Right now all we’ve got is the video from early March, before he left for Ocala, and the video from his XC school last week. Plus I obviously really want to see him, especially in a big boy environment like Ocala. We’ve got lots of Presto plans for Sunday, and I’m pumped. We’ve also got to sit down and iron out the plan for him as far as YEH and the Futurity and figure out some events he can do. The schedule is kind of shit (there is only one recognized event in Texas after he gets home, and then no more until September, and no more YEH classes within a 12 hour drive either. Don’t get me started on the YEH schedule, it’s a rant you really don’t want.) so it’s gonna depend on how we can work out the traveling and coordinate with her schedule for her other horses.
In a slight change of plan for him though – he’s going to Kentucky next wee!. Megan is showing her 4* horse at Kentucky, and rather than drive 12 hours up to Kentucky with him, be gone for a week, and then drive back to Ocala, load all the horses up, and drive 17 hours back to Texas, it makes more sense to just take them all (there’s only 3-4, not that many) to Kentucky and then make the drive back to Texas from there. He’ll be staying at a farm near the horse park for the week, and I’m happy for him to continue his world tour. It’s extremely good for him to learn how to travel well and unload in new places and be able to settle and work, so I think it’s good experience. Plus, like… who wouldn’t want to go to Kentucky at the end of April? I’m jealous.
We have a couple more exciting things in our plan for Ocala, and I think I’m weaseling in a trip to see a stallion and some babies (because I always try to squeeze that in wherever we go) so I don’t think we’ll be short on things to do even though we’re no longer horse shopping. I’m ready… someone let me on the plane.