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The Fly: Trail Rides and Optometrists


Muck Boot Diva Headshot No, I am not trying out for the latest version of “The Fly”.

 This Diva was brought, kicking and screaming, to the eye doctor.

Visiting the eye doctor rates right up there with root canal – no one touches my eyes without severe procrastination on my part first.

But, the meeting was made mandatory after suffering from several recent ocular migraines. 

She poked, prodded, stuck mechanical things in my eyes, and forced me to look at bright lights while she stared into my brain.

You know – BRIGHT LIGHTS – one of the problems that were CAUSING these migraines.

Well, when it was all over I did not get my lollipop – but I did order some real nice purple reading glasses that will have beneficial light-cutting lenses, and the proper strength too!

The Diva loves purple reading glasses. 

All covered by insurance (which was the best part – NO MONEY).  Whew!

I wanted to get my eyes squared away because this was my BIG weekend.  Rosie and I were ditching the ring and going on the trail! 

My little Ukrainian eye-doctor said as long as I kept my big black shades on and stayed out of the bright lights, I should be fine till the purple glasses came in.  I promised to do a few other things for her too with my fingers crossed behind my back, and left that office quick.

The next day was true blue, through and through, New Jersey – bumper to bumper from the moment we woke up till the moment we arrived at the farm after work. 

We unpacked near midnight.  The MWM and his mother were planning on harvesting the garden, and I promised to help with the bees after I returned from my ride.  They ate dinner, I decided to have an egg and some toast which made it acceptable, and then scooted off to bed.  I had to be there by 9AM.

I set my alarm.  Twice.  The Diva had to wake up on time.  This could be a challenge.

 The thought of a REAL ride far outweighed the extra  Zzzz’s, and I figured I could catch a cat-nap later after the ride to make up for lost time.

The Blackberry did not fail me.  I awoke to the gentle rise of the Blackberry signature alarm that tends to crescendo so annoyingly that I rarely let it get to that point. 

It was breezy, the sky was blue, and it was seventy-two.  What a day!

However, all I had to wear was what I stuffed in my knapsack before I ran from the Garden State.

 “Oh well, this won’t be a fashion statement morning for sure,” I murmured — half-asleep — donning my Jersey black leather cap, a black jacket with a silver zipper, blue jeans and a pro-American shirt along with my signature black Alligator skinned boots and sun glasses.  Thank GOD you all aren't viewing this picture...

I took a large gulp of coffee, winced in the mirror, said, "Eeek!" and left.

I arrived at 9AM sharp.  Rosie looked fine.  So, I took pictures of her.

I remembered all the rules of the ring. I did my horse-prep work — watched Reyna do the mechanical stuff – and she applied the fly stay the heck away spray!  I wish she would have put some of that on me too.


Then we took Rosie and Clover (a Morgan – Reyna’s ride) out towards the field.  There was a foot stool so we could get up and on the horses.  Getting off Rosie was another story.

My stirrups were in the right position notch 5 on the left and notch 6 on the right.  I was up and on Rosie in a flash (Ha) wondering how we would do.  The breeze was beautiful and I was enjoying the view.

Poor Rosie was fending off the flies – whipping what tail a Percheron has around and stomping her huge rear hooves.  Felt like an earthquake from where I was sitting.  The flies were relentless.

Reyna got on Clover and off we went.  We went through the fields; there were less flies there.  Reyna would look back every once and a while to make sure I was still on the horse.  The Diva had surprised her. 

She said, “You’ve been watching those horse riding videos on YouTube again, haven’t you?” 

I grinned and said, “Yup.” 

She said, “You look good in the saddle, they paid off!”

I wondered, while riding, how the MWM and his mother were doing with the garden harvest and if I’d actually make it back in time to help with the bees.


The next part of the trail was in the woods.  Here is where it gets interesting.  Rosie and the Diva are a little “height-challenged.”  Seventeen hands plus five foot ten is too much. 

 Not being familiar with the trail those horse ballet lessons in the ring paid off.  I had to avoid many a hanging limb that would have otherwise knocked me on my – well, you know.

We only had one little spot of real trouble.  There was a “scary spot” for Rosie.  I don’t know why.

 Rosie decided to two-step it in high gear when we passed it.  The Diva was NOT ready for this at all.  I forgot the word for stop, and just pulled back on the reigns yelling, “What’s up?”  Guess that was enough for Rosie – she settled down and let me lead her away from that area.

We had to pass it again on the way back, but she was better – still a bit skittish but she got a pat on the neck for passing it without fussing again.  Reyna wanted me to try to canter a bit with Rosie to get it out of her system, but I didn’t think I was ready for any dashing through the trails yet.

We went over the river and through the woods and made back to where I could see the barn, after about an hour on the trail. 

Then Rosie stopped dead in her hooves.  I tried to get her to move and she just would not budge.

I looked at her face – it was COVERED in flies.  I yelled to Reyna – “Flies — HUNDREDS – ALL OVER HER!  What do I DO?”

 She said, “Kick her hard.”  Well, I didn’t really want to canter, or worse, hang on for dear life – but I hated to see Rosie suffer.  So, I kicked her – hard.

“Let’s go!” I hollered.  I gripped the reigns tight; I was expecting for her to bolt like a lightning out of -- well you know.

All she did was saunter towards the barn. “That’s it???!!!” my adrenalin shouted.

I shook my head and whispered, “Rosie.  The one time I was ready to let you fly, and you pooped out.  Can’t say I wasn’t willing.”

It was fun.  This Diva stuck to her saddle the entire ride, and according to Horse Master Reyna I even looked like I knew what I was doing!

I sweat brushed Rosie off, and made her look nice and shiny.  Reyna put that ridiculous looking fly mask on her face (I personally think they should make black fly-resistant sunglasses for horses) and sent her out into the field.


Then, of course, Rosie rolled around in the dirt. 

Until we ride again!

Splashingly yours,

Muck Boot Diva