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thrills, chills, and spills -- but wait, there's more - when you don't know what to do... — LiveJournal
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thrills, chills, and spills -- but wait, there's more
So my thoughts about Panteria have percolated enough, and I find myself with a moment or two to write about it.

The ger is fab. I love it. It's the coolest thing in the world, as far as camping goes. We even have raising the roof ring down to a science -- we set three poles into the ring and set the notches at joints low on the wall, then "walk" the ring up, moving one pole at a time, until it's set at the top. Then we insert the rest of the poles. Very slick, and saves much swearing and glaring.

An interesting thing happened on the way to full ger-ness, though... the wall, which we had very carefully cut to the correct length of the circumference when it was in my parents' back yard was suddently about a foot and a half too long. Rather than futz with it, though, we opted to leave it, and just pull the excess insidethe tent and tie it of that way. Did make for an interesting time hanging the door, though... Oh, and did I mention that the grommets on the end of the wall canvas and on the door got set onsite, Thursday evening? Wolfie rocks, man. He rocked and rolled getting those bugger set, and by full dark, we had ourselves one kickass Mongolian tent. We sat outside the tent that night, watching the clouds roll by overhead, and enjoying the silence, which is something we get all too rarely around here.

I was cold Thursday night. It wasn't helped by the fact that we had no pillows and that the bed was set up so that our heads were ever so much slightly lower than our feet. Oh, and did I mention that the bed I got from Duke Brion and Duchess Anna had warped over the winter and Wolfie was just about spitting over trying to put it together? I took one look at his face and suggested that we skip it. Ever since I started putting a blanket under the mattress pad on the air mattress, I haven't had any trouble with being cold from that side. Wolfie will attest, though, that I am an aggressive cuddler; so much so that I'll shove him out of the bed in an effort to cuddle closer for warmth. Talk about self-defeating...

Frost on the ground Friday morning. Am I weird to be boggled by that? That I slept with my face not a foot off a surface that was covered with frost, and didn't freeze? I guess it doesn't happen to me often enough for me to be blase about it. We went to Wal-Mart later that day to get pillows and such; I ended up being late enough back that I missed going on a trail ride with Eleanor, Brion, and Ankara. Junior (the horse I take lessons on at home) was none to happy at being left behind, and at one point managed to get his halter caught on a pin that held his portable pen together. I was right there, so I sort of calmed him down and we got him all squared away. It gave me an interesting insight on Wolfie, though: He was wicked pissed that Junior had been allowed to get in such a state, thereby putting me at risk (because when Junior got caught, my first thought was to calm him, and I leapt right into the pen). At first I thought he was being a bit unreasonable, but now I realize it was purely concern for my safety, and that's romantic, in it's own way. Who needs hearts and flowers when your lover's main concern is your safety and happiness?

Friday night was wind. Lots of wind. The ger was rock-solid, but the roof canvas is a square draped over a cone, so there's lots of loose material that the wind caught up and slapped against the rafters. Sometime in the night, a tree near the edge of the woodline fell down. The crash woke me up, and of course, my eyelids are somehow wired to my bladder, so the act of their opening sends signals to it, checking for fullness, and of courseit always sends back the message MUST PEE NOW!!! (No one was hurt, by the way. I didn't even discover it was a whole tree till the morning; it'd sounded like a branch to me.)

So I got up and went pee, and on the way back, checked the roof. We had a manila rope around the outside acting as an outer belly band, keeping the roof down, and it had failed -- popped up over the edge of the rafters. The corners of the roof were staked down, so it wasn't going to fly away, but it could have gapped. So I fixed that and crawled back into bed -- when the tree fell down, that was a signal for the winds to die down. I think that was their goal, and having accomplished it, they went elsewhere to play.

The challenge tournament on Saturday was awesome. Duke Brion set up two mini-challenge courses, side by side, and the two riders had to race to see who could complete it fastest. I was supposed to be sharing a horse with Elaine, the King's Champion, but she wanted a fiery one... somehow, we ended up with a green-broke (well, he was as fas as I was concerned; I don't care if he was competing in barrel racing) two year old, and he was just slightly too much horse for me. I don't like the thought of me riding a two-year old, anyway; he's still growing and I'm too big. So I shared Junior with Duncan Kerr in the afternoon, and he was fun. No, make that FUN. He kicked up his heels a little, as Junior is wont to do when asked to do something besides walk-trot, But that was no big -- Duncan has an amazing talent for being able to stick on a horse.

Saturday night, after dinner, we broke out some of Duchess Anna's liqueurs -- strawberry, raspberry, cinnamon pear, and plum, and Eibhlin brought blueberry. Oh, the desserts I could make with those. Woo. Yum. And Wolfie brought out the little bottle o' tequila he brought for Her Grace, and well, she just happened to have limes! Howza 'bout that! So Shots Were Done, two of them by me, and it proceeded to get a little drunk out. Wolfie told the Sordid and Harrowing Tale of How Ignatius the Ignoble Found His True Love, which is really funny, but needs a little work. It might have helped if he wasn't as drunk as he was when he told it, because his timing was lacking, but oh well; it'll be better for Pennsic. It really is a funny story; parts of it make me giggle just thinking about it.

Saturday overnight to Sunday brought rain. Thunderstorms, to be exact. Thunder woke me up, my body did the eyelid-bladder connection thing, so I got up, followed by going right back to bed. I went to bed the night before with a sore throat and I awoke with one, so I decided to scratch from the Championships. It didn't break my heart, really; Wolfie rode for me, and I would have had to ride the two year old, Outlaw, and I simply didn't have the energy. I did regret it, a little, because the challenge course looked like so much fun! (Can you tell I like challenge courses?) I gave him by red and gold sash to wear as my favor. He tilted at the quintain for the first time in the Championships (I guess we don't practice it because we don't have enough room at Sally's for a runout), and did rather well, too. Should be interesting when he's authorized to ride the games at a canter! (He got lots of compliments on his improved riding. Ever since he started to canter, his confidence has gone way up. I'm really proud of him, and I think he's pretty proud of himself, too.)

Towards the end of the competition, something happened, the beginning of which I didn't see, but it ended up with Duke Brion falling off of his horse, Cyrano, while holding a spear, and breaking his left arm. I thought he'd gotten impaled on brush, or worse still, on his spear, but he fell on the spear and it in turn hit him in the mouth, which split his lip a little. After we got the horse caught, and Brion's wrist splinted and everything going again, some conversation ensued about which hospital to take him to. Er, hello? Went to Norwich! Know where the hospital is! I can drive! So I did. It was nice to be able to help, to do a little hero schtick for a change. So often I feel like a non-helpful person; it was good to be able to do this.
shoot the rapids