The month of February started off with a fantastic trip to California. Almost the entire time I was home I was blessed with sunshine, (each morning was a reminder of what pea soup looks like) just in time as I was beginning to turn purple and blue here in Maryland! The Havarah group has remained so strong in the Fresno and surrounding areas that I was kept busy teaching all of Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I am so impressed with the dedication everyone has kept without having an on-site trainer; I realize that at many times this is problematic and frustrating for many BUT looking in from afar, my students are riding every bit as well as riders in full time training programs.

I plan on traveling back to California for clinics as often and as long as my riders are willing to have me; the east coast may have hills, trees and grass but I don’t think I’ll ever find another “Havarah”! As I say this, I do have to admit that the rising cost of travel is making my short trips a bit difficult to put together! I have always been lucky to get decent priced flights directly into Fresno but on the February travel I purchased a ticket into San Jose for half the cost of the ticket into Fresno… so note to all… always check the surrounding airports 🙂 This actually worked out perfectly as my long lost brother conveniently just moved into a home that is about 15 minutes away from SJC. My brother, Aaron, is someone that many of you will never meet but I would still love you to know about. I’ve always referred to him as “the brains of the family”. Aaron is a Cal Tech graduate, he studied Micro Biology and after putting in a substantial amount of time searching for a specific gene that creates cancer, he has now switched over to his true talent in life…computers. Aaron has lived in the bay area for many years now, and travels to Fresno only when he is completely forced into it, thus is why I mention that you may never meet him. None the less, I own him much gratitude for my insane horsey passion. We both began riding together at “Horseworld” and my goal was never to get great, but just to be better than my older brother 🙂 This really only came to fruition when I gained a week of riding on him when he went to boyscout camp. Then his love of riding faded and he was left to be my taxi driver! My mom constantly reminds me that my favorite phrase as a youngster was “I can do anything you can do and I can do it better!” No wonder my brother said he liked me a lot better before I could talk!

California was great, every time I go I have to re-convince myself that what I’m doing on the east coast is really the right thing for me at this point in my life.

For those of you following this blog for some “Charly” up-dates, keep reading! For weeks upon weeks Charly and I were going on long walks, sometimes very peaceful and sometimes way too eventful! Charly was in a very slow rehab program and on January first he was put back under tack. All of January and February Charly was worked in the indoor having his work gradually increased each week, all walk and trot. These two months seemed to just fly by for me. Charly is one of those horses that just make your life better. I miss competing, I miss jumping, but I still look forward to any time I can spend with Charly. He was re-scanned at the end of February and was given full go ahead, it’s time to canter!!!! 🙂 Last week Charly had his first days of canter work in the indoor and then yesterday I took him out on his first “hack”. Charly went up hills, through woods, across a road, by a dumpster, and even over some small little twigs :> The woods that I hack in have lots of jumps, mostly very natural logs, and it’s taking all my will power to NOT jump them! Ahhh one more month!

I did take a non-horsey non-work weekend and traveled with Bryce to what I’ve always thought of as a very famous east coast destination…the Poconos. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I’ve always thought of the Poconos as a resort type of get away. In reality it’s just the place where most of Pennsylvania goes for skiing/boarding (locally) if they really want good terrain they go to Vermont; OR if they want good snow they go west! Anyhow, it was a lovely quick get away and I’m finally catching on to the sport of snowboarding. Bryce even tricked me into getting down some black diamonds!

The end of Feb beginning of March brought along one more change…up until now I’ve been sharing a cottage with Asia, one of the girls that moved out east with me. She recently purchased a very nice house in PA. Quigley and I decided that we didn’t need a move at the moment and luckily found ourselves a great new roommate named Jane. Jane is a vet student, excercise rider and a dog owner. Jane is as close to California as I could find! Quigley doesn’t know it yet but Jane will be bringing over Lola, she’s a female version of the Quig mister so I’m hoping they’ll get to be good friends.

That’s all for now… keep in touch!