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Tuesday, 09 September, 2008

Virginia Trip, Day 2
(with comments)

The Monday leg of the trip started with eggs, bacon & pancakes for breakfast - to make up for the lost Sunday family dinner.

I drove Carisa & Jim back to the ranch to check on the animals. The horses were let loose in a large pen, allowing them to indulge in one of their favorite pastimes: rolling in the dirt.

Meet the horses

The horses are American Quarter Horses and are as follows:

  • Reven-Up - a 20-year-old mare Carisa's had since high school.
  • Toby - Rev's 2nd foal, 6 years old male.
  • Jesse - 20 years old. Probably the best riding horse of them all. Was a ranch horse used for herding cattle. He loves his soft, semi-retired lifestyle.
  • Buss - The boss of this pack of horses, even though he joined their ranks last. He's an 18-year-old rope horse.

While the kids had a romp in the pool with John, the parents were at Costco getting 6 new tires on the Ford... just to be safe.

It was apparent that their original plan to stop next in Odessa, TX was out of the question at 618 miles, so I went online searching for their next potential overnight stay.

After conferring with Carisa, they asked me to follow up with horse facilities in El Paso, a 330 mile jaunt. I found the Johnny Bean Horse Farm right off the I-10 and a Micro Hotel 3 miles from the farm for the humans.

Personal DVD players and walkie-talkies were given to the grandkids as early Christmas gifts. Or maybe they should be considered gifts for the parents whose sanity may be spared by children not asking the proverbial: "Are we there yet?" John taught the kids proper 2-way radio etiquette. In other words, they now say "over" after each sentence they utter.

They didn't leave Tucson until 4:30 p.m. MST arriving in El Paso around midnight MDT. They made just one stop, in Lordsburg, NM to refuel - vehicles, humans, and all 7 critters. I'm happy to report that they suffered no difficulties on the road whatever.

- Posted by Pamn


  1. By Nick Hodge. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @11:33am:
    Pamn

    See, I told you things could only get better :-)

    Plain sailing from here on in.

    Fingers, toes and loads of other anatomical parts crossed
  2. By Pamn. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @11:40am:
    Nick Hodge You are so right. Today will be a longer stretch, and I, too, have all my pieces & parts crossed!
  3. By Doug. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @12:01pm:
    It's a longer stretch today but once out of El Paso it's a flat wide open road with little traffic. El Paso's Upper Valley (where the horses stayed last night) will be the last green they see all day.
    Well, not quite right, the Chihuahuan Desert has had more rain than normal this year and is greener than I've ever seen. Are they aiming for stinky Midland/Odessa or further tonight? The countryside and more "horsey" gets prettier approaching Abeline.
  4. By Doug. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @12:02pm:
    edit: The countryside gets prettier and more "horsey" approaching Abeline.
  5. By Mean Jean. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @12:02pm:
    Driving the Texas way means getting in the left lane and staying there no matter what.

    The "refuel every chance you get" is good advice for anything east of Dallas.
  6. By Susan. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @12:10pm:
    Holy crap, get me some green chile and bring it to Lynchburg!!!! I crave it always.
  7. By major_danny. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @12:45pm:
    Glad things are going better. Those tires were a wise purchase—maybe deductible as a moving expense, I don't know.

    I was riding a city bus on the freeway heading downtown when a tire blew out and shredded en route. Boy, that shredding made a lot of noise which didn't stop! The driver had no choice but to slow to 50 and tough out the last few miles while all of us looked at one another trying not to appear alarmed. Unnerving.
  8. By Pamn. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @01:21pm:
    Doug

    Today's goal is just shy of Ft. Worth.
  9. By deaudonnee. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @01:24pm:
    Interstate 10 going east from El Paso has a road speed of 80mph. My daughter and I and her two girls drove it in July and kept the speed at 80 almost all the way to Toyaville from the Hill Country. If they have time they could go to the Balmorhea State Park, the country's largest natural swimming pool, I believe. It's really beautiful and very very cold clean water. Then they could see the black catfish who are black because they get sunburned from being in that clear water.
  10. By Spokane Mary. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @01:38pm:
    Hooray! Good news! Things will go well now - I'm so glad they have all new tires and they had a good few hours of R & R at your place.

    Beautiful horses!
  11. By Doug. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @01:41pm:
    "Today's goal is just shy of Ft. Worth."
    Not much out there except Ranger and Weatherford.

    That's a fair hike that's been hard for me to accomplish in a day - but then we always leave late. If it's still light - get the kids to look for the "castle on the hill" east of Ranger, south side of the road at the Thurber/Mingus exit. It looks quite impressive from the highway.
    http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCP&cp=pdgxj06sz75g&style=b&lvl=2&tilt;=-90&dir=0&alt;=-1000&scene=26506658&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&encType=1

    Texas is big...
    "The sun has riz,
    the sun has set,
    and here we is in Texas yet"
  12. By Ice Giant 37. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @02:10pm:
    "Proud Home of President George W. Bush" - Maybe as they pass through, they could take a survey of how many Texans are still proud of that.
  13. By Pamn. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @02:16pm:
    deaudonnee

    Unfortunately, the rental truck has a "governor" which limits their speed to just under 70. I don't think I'm unhappy with that as far as safety goes. But if I were driving in a car, I would definitely want to cover that flat ground as quickly as possible.
  14. By Eenie Meenie. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @03:23pm:
    Family Love. This is too cool. No one, critters included, gets left behind.
  15. By FFSteve. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @04:16pm:
    Pamn, how are the cat's doing?
  16. By Pamn. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @04:31pm:
    FFSteve Poor Tequila is the only critter not allowed to get out and stretch during these breaks. She's an older cat, and has been an indoor cat her entire life. Tequila was even anxious when I took her out onto our back porch area when they were here. She kept trying to get back into the house. Just skulked along looking into every window/door for a way back inside. At least she's in a big carrier case - with her bed, food/water, and litter box. Plus she gets to ride in an air-conditioned truck with one child and Lacy (dog) to keep her company.
  17. By Kashmarek. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @05:18pm:
    Are there any animal - vetinary issues crossing other states. That is, do any of the states you cross have health certificate issues to allow you to cross their state (bring animals in/take animals out)? Some states with big investments in horse rearing might be interested in the health of the horses (maybe even the bloodlines).
  18. By Pamn. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @06:03pm:
    Carisa made sure to get a Coggins certificate from her vet on all four horses, which is required by some stables. She gets her love of horses from her Great-Grandfather who was one of the first Arabian horse ranchers in Montana in the late 1950s. In fact, my dad helped my grandfather build his ranch home in Billings, MT. where I was born.
  19. By Blayne. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @07:07pm:
    I was born in Billings, MT as well, in a hospital.

    Do you think any of their animals will try to hitch a ride back to CA?
  20. By Pamn. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @07:44pm:
    Blayne I was born in Deaconess Hospital - how about you?!?

    As for the horses, well, unless (like me) they don't like the colder weather, I suspect they know when they're loved and truly taken care of, so they won't go anywhere Carisa doesn't take them.
  21. By Blayne. Comment posted 09-Sep-2008 @09:39pm:
    Yeah, born in same place! I thought that rang a bell.
    2hwpjih.jpg
    Excuse the dirty thumbnail - still working on the Cadillac.
  22. By Snag. Comment posted 10-Sep-2008 @04:42am:
    No wonder the tyres are a-poppin' ... they're the 'healthiest' horses I've seen in a while. Just kidding, here are our overfed square-dancers ......
    my.php?image=horseseh7.jpg
    Are your critters wearing fly-veils ? Ours take about one hour to get them off. Looks like you keep shoes on them, too .. is there a good farrier where you're headed ?
  23. By Snag. Comment posted 10-Sep-2008 @04:50am:
    Hmmm ... time to cut ImageShack loose and use Tinypic, I think !
    izxsi1.jpg
  24. By Pamn. Comment posted 10-Sep-2008 @06:04am:
    Snag Yeah, the horses are wearing fly-veils and I think they much prefer having those on than dealing with the flies - which were bad here in Tucson. Carisa has her work cut out as she'll have to find a new farrier, pasture for the horses, etc. Of course, finding a place to live is first priority, hopefully something with horse facilities already to go. Now, to show my ignorance, is square-dancer a breed of horse?
  25. By Dr. Wingnut. Comment posted 10-Sep-2008 @11:27am:
    Another useful tool for keeping children from asking... "Are we there yet?"
  26. By Pamn. Comment posted 10-Sep-2008 @12:49pm:
    Dr. Wingnut

    NICE!!!!!!! Someone is certainly using the old noggin coming up with that idea.
  27. By Snag. Comment posted 11-Sep-2008 @05:05am:
    Pamn ... ha ha, no .. square dancing was an attempted humorous reference to their circling each other in that photo .. you know, do-si-do and all that.

    The darker horse is mainly a 'Shire' .. similar to a Clydesdale (slight 'feathers' on the feet) but stockier. Our Vet says he is the second heaviest horse in the district (?850kg).
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shire_horse

    The lighter one is mainly a 'Waler' (as in New South Wales)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waler_horse
  28. By Pamn. Comment posted 11-Sep-2008 @09:06am:
    Snag

    I figured that was what the reference meant, but I am totally ignorant when it comes to horses. Just because my daughter has some is no reflection on me. Your Shire must be a big animal according to what I read. They are both beautiful horses. Somehow I tend to be skittish when it comes to horses. Sigh.
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