Friday my husband and I headed to the
What a view. The Sears Tower has walk-out ledges on the “sky deck” and they are all see-through (floor and all). Managed to get husband who’s afraid of heights out on it. 🙂
On the left is just a view from the east side of the Sears Tower (yes, it has been renamed to the Willis Tower, but really… isn’t it engrained in everyone’s head that it’s the Sears Tower???)
On the right is the Field Museum – do you see the giant horse on the front of the building?
How would you like to have your boat directly underneath your condo??
And my husband and I sitting in one of the sky decks.
After Sears, we headed out for a little jaunt.
…for 75 minutes….
… now what, you may ask was worth waiting for over an hour for? Cool show? Museum exhibit? Some ultra neat Chicago secret thing? Nope…..
Yep… hot dogs. Or hot Doug’s as it happens to be called. Featured on Man Vs. Food, we just had to go try the unique celebrity inspired hot dogs.
I got the Elvis. My husband had a daily special. And tons of cheese fries.
The dog in the middle has bourbon apricot sauce with blue & brie cheeses on it. It was very good. The plain one in the back is mine. I like plain dogs. Yes, I realize I’m the only person older than 5 that doesn’t like ketchup or mustard, but I really, really, really don’t.
What’s that? How’s that diet, you ask?? Well, considering this was the only food I ate that day – a plain hot dog and half an order of cheese fries, I didn’t tip the scale too much.
So anyway, Saturday brought about the Kentucky Derby. I am saddened to say that of course (as I figured) the weather was absolutely gorgeous in Kentucky (on TV anyway)… so all my cancelled plans and hotel reservations were for naught because we could have gone and had a wonderful time and did the Kentucky Horse Park and …. well, I digress.
The horse I bet on fractured his leg. Go figure. Archarcharch sustained a mild fracture. He’ll be fine after surgery. And my other horse to round out the exacta, Dialed In… well, where exactly was he??? Disappointing. But kudos to Animal Kingdom – may he win the Triple Crown.
But pre-Derby, I spent the morning with my own horses. I bought the meadowbrook, and had a small army of people at the barn to help me. It worked out well, the weather held out and I couldn’t have asked for more from Chewbacca.
4 people all assisted with leading the horse and pulling the cart around and we took it all step by step. Chewie did great. He had a few little moments of “what the hell is this??” but he didn’t explode and there was no disasters. Nothing unexpected. If anything it went better than expected:
We just took it a step at a time, first leading Chewie around while someone pulled the cart in front of him. Then we led Chewie while 2 people pulled the cart behind him. That seemed to go well, so we hitched the trace lines and let Chewie pull the cart. That went well and despite a few (very minor) hiccups whilst trying to turn the cart around, he did more than I expected.
And my husband and other helpers made very good ground people. Big thanks!
Chewie stood rather patiently while my husband didn’t hold him and instead made silly faces.
And then, I probably should have ended it there, but alas, I did not. That’s OK, because Chewie was fine, but it was more than I really should have done the first time out. I didn’t mean for this session to last anything more than 5 minutes, but it went on for about 15 or so.
After Chewie walked around with an empty cart for a while, back and forth up and down the driveway and turned around a few times….
I got in. Talk about nerve wracking. But it went well. It really did and he had ground people assisting the whole way. It didn’t take long to realize that the harness is not fitting properly, so we made some quick adjustments and had to ditch the cool green breast collar pad. I still need to make adjustments to the harness and re-think the pads and of course, eventually I’ll get a whole new harness – a much, much better one.
After some minor adjustments, the harness was fitting better and doing it’s job. We just walked Chewie maybe 40 feet. He was, by this point, getting a little … bored.. or frustrated… or just plain cranky. Either way, his attention and patience had pretty much hit an end and we stopped on a good note.
So, the plan from here is to do more of the exact same thing until Chewbacca is pulling the cart a few dozen feet up and down the driveway. Once he’s comfortable doing that, we’ll upgrade to the arena and try to do a lap around it. It will be a long, long time before he’s trotting and turning and doing figure 8’s in the arena or running a marathon, but today was the first big step towards that.
If how quickly he progressed with ground driving training is any indication, he will probably really impress me with how quickly he learns to really pull the cart. Ultimately my goal will be for him to be as broke as Luke is – just hitch and go… go whereever, whenever, and at whatever speed, I want. But that’s a matter of time and experience. Luke didn’t get that way over night, it took a few months and now that we’ve had him a few years, he’s just an ace at everything. Chewie will get there with time.
So after the driving session, I thought Luke and Chewie could both use some play time in the arena. Dixie of course got overlooked… again. What else is new? Very hard to make time for 3 horses.
But before the rain ended our afternoon, Luke and Chewie had a good time.