The day dawned cold and a little frosty. I was a little hesitant to get up and out of bed, but when I peeped behind the curtain, I was delighted to find the sky looking blue and clear.... it was going to be a fine day!!
After giving a couple of riding lessons I then went and brought in the boy, groomed him and hitched up my vehicle to the float.
I was prepared for a possible 'discussion' about hoping onto the float, so I enabled my secret weapon..... a big bowl of food. I placed this up inside the float by the front bar as well as my shortened lunge whip on the outside on the float.
I went and untied Shell Fire who by this stage was sporting his 'Arab "Ooooo look at the scary float" Snort!' look and I stepped onto the ramp.
I turned and went to picked up the secret weapon. I turned back to find a face rapidly approaching with ears pointed so far forward they were almost touching. He was most pleased to greet me AND have food stuffed into his face.
Being slightly flabbergasted that Shell Fire had walked up into the float I stood there a little stunned for a few seconds while he quite happily munched away on the secret weapon. Gathering my senses, I tied up the secret weapon to enable Shell Fire to keep on munching, then tied him loosely, slipped down behind him, did up the bum bar, lifted the ramp, locked it into place and then went round to the side door. I was greeted by his nose and a dribble of food.
After tying him more securely and taking away the secret weapon (he wasnt too impressed about that) I sealed the side door, loaded the dogs into the back, started the car and set off.
Shell Fire travelled really well in the float. I hardly knew he was there. It was only about a 10min drive to Linda's place, but I still took it nice and slow (think Granny driving) so as to give him a good first outing experience.
We arrived at Linda's and unloaded. Bowie (Airthrey Highlander Linda's stunning 'real boy') was also there to see who was turning up visiting. While Bowie was very polite and called out a welcome, Shell Fire turned into a bit of a snob and just lifted his tail and stood looking around before finding the nearest patch of grass to stuff into his gob.
A few munches of grass, a quick change of gear and we were off down into the arena.
We took the slightly scenic route to the arena to avoid unsettling Bowie too much (only girls lift their tail round Bowie and Shell Fire was giving mixed signals doing his Ay-rab thing with his tail).
The sand in the arena wasnt too exciting so I lunged him for a bit before then attempting to do some obstacles with him.
Scariest by far was Lynda sitting on a bright green drum on its side. Not only that but it could MOVE and ROLL and Oh-My-Gosh it could Make-A-Funny-Noise-On-The-Sand and it Could-Possibly-Eat-Me and Roll-Towards-Me..... Took about 15 minutes, but in the end, Arabian curiosity got the better of him and he just HAD to touch it with his nose and then realise that it wasnt that scary after all.
Shell Fire was also very brave and walked over some tarpaulin (only if I walked over it first) and did some trotting poles (walking over them).
By far the funniest thing was watching Shell Fire spook at some barrels upended with Bowie laughing on the side lines making fun of the fact that he can just walk over that kind of height now!!
The day finished with Shell Fire again loading into the float and travelling very well back home, unloading well and being put to bed. He was very glad to be home. He gave me a cuddle as if to say "Thanks for the day out".
While it was a great day today with Shell Fire, I unfortunately do not have any photos due to
A) forgetting my camera, and
B) being hard to hang onto Shell Fire and take photos all at the same time.
Maybe next time :D
Really looking forward to getting this boy under saddle now and taking him out and about!