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Stoved Up  ~Steve McClure (Reno)

I’ve been a bit “under the weather” these past few years but as of the date of this composition I finally have a preliminary diagnosis and a surgery scheduled. Say a prayer if you’re got a mind to. Cowboys call this being “stoved up” but l know lots of folks have it a lot worse than I do. It’s a work in progress and we will see.

Now, unfortunately, we are all experiencing a pandemic and many of us find ourselves at home as well.  During my own convalescence, I have found YouTube to be an nice diversion and horse training videos are at the top of my list. Besides my regulars, I have found a California buckaroo named Pat Puckett (Click or tap the name to follow the link) to be a knowledgeable and entertaining vlogger. He has cowboyed for over forty years and has very dry wit. He is also very interested in the history of the cowboy and how it all began in the new world. I highly recommend him. He has a great knowledge of making a ranch horse and he and his wife, Deb, do a fine job. 

Being afoot this long is very difficult for me. I miss being in the saddle with all my friends both two as well as four legged! I sure miss my buddy Sherwin and admit that I occasionally dream that the two of us are reunited in the saddle. The two of us together are more than just our sum total. 

I also think a lot about groundwork. It requires the same connection as riding and when properly done you find out once again that less is more. I enjoy groundwork almost as much as riding. Some folks I know, before mounting, will move the horse backwards or forwards to “untrack”them using the reins but I normally have a halter underneath the bridle attached to a long rope which I tie to the saddle. Ostensibly it is there as a “git down” rope and for that it is very handy but I also like to work the horse with it on the ground when he is saddled. That way I can check how they move as well as saddle placement and tightness. Its how we first communicate after he is saddled. 

I’m intrigued by the comparison of groundwork to our present predicament of social distancing and staying at home. Maybe we can spend this time un-tracking ourselves and checking on our own well being as well as slowing down to be more attune to family and neighbors. Just a thought. 

But in any case we thank those on the front lines as well as those who care for the livestock, grow the food, haul and stock. We are all living history now. We will make it through and be stronger for it. See you on the other side.

~Steve McClure (Reno)

To read more by Steve McClure (Reno)--see below.

Insights by Steve -- Forever A Cowboy

Insights by Steve -- Horse Do

Insights by Steve -- McCarty

Insights by Steve -- Horse Geology?

Insights by Steve -- Working Together

Insights by Steve -- The Circle

Insights by Steve -- Natural Horseman

Insights by Steve -- I Can't

Insights by Steve -- Saddle Tracks

Insights by Steve -- Harmony and Horsemanship

Insights by Steve -- Sherwin

Insights by Steve -- Hobbling

Insights By Steve -- Roping Practice

Insights By Steve -- Support

Insights By Steve -- Sensei

Insights by Steve - Harmony

Insights by Steve-Centered in the Now