Thursday, August 31, 2006

Rainbows & Ice Cream

I guess there isn’t much you can say about a post like that last one, is there? No worries, gentle readers, this post is about shopping, and horses, and rainbows and ice cream.

My husband and I share an unfortunate disease. It’s called shopaphilia. We both love to shop, and this sometimes gets us into trouble. It’s not limited to one passion, like shoes, for example, which is fortunate, since that means that buying just about anything feeds the monster.

I get intensely focused on one item that I.must.have and I can’t rest until I find the perfect version of it. Last week that was a chocolate brown pencil skirt. A simple request, in theory, but in reality it was very difficult to accomplish this shopping mission. That’s because all department stores right now look like Stevie Nicks’ closet. You know what I am talking about: the broom skirt with the lace edge and just a hint of hand-dye distress; the long crochet cardigan with the self-tie belt of turquoise beads; the skinny jeans with the slouchy boot; the tunic top with the empire waist…all of it, just NO.

I also seem to have entered a twilight zone where there are few clothes that actually fit me and are age-appropriate. While I am immensely grateful that I no longer have to see belly-buttons on a daily basis, I don’t think we need to dress like the Amish all of a sudden. America does this in times of stress – we whip back and forth between extremes in everything from clothing to music.

I’ve yet to come up with a good explanation as to why I am buying new work clothes when I am generally only in a client’s office one or two days a week. In my own defense I am replacing pants and tops that I can’t wear because they are too small (ugh) and shoes that are too scuffed and worn to be appropriate for the office anymore. I am actually throwing things away from my closet as I put the new stuff in. I’m also buying on sale and/or at places like R0ss for the most part. Oh what the hell, I can afford it, and as they say, I’m worth it!

On to the horse talk. Once again it was a picture perfect day at the farm for my lesson yesterday. Every single time I’ve been there, every week for going on 12 weeks, it has been sunny with a cool breeze, like I ordered it up from the weather catalogue. I’m beginning to think there’s some sort of wish vortex at work there, a supernatural force beyond the gate that ensures I will have a good experience. Talk about a great marketing ploy!

For the last two lessons I’ve been on a somewhat lazy horse named Huey. It takes a lot to keep him going, even at the walk, you have to really get after him to establish any kind of rhythm, which I am not good at. But, once you get a little pissed off at him and really give him some hard kicks he realizes he’s fighting a losing battle and will start responding to more subtle clues. He does love to canter though! The first time I cantered I felt like my feet were flying out of the stirrups, so this time I shortened them up a notch so I would be pushing down harder, which worked wonders! I had several short stretches of time at canter when I felt completely in control and in the right position, a wonderful, if fleeting, feeling.

I had my first scary moment on horseback yesterday. Huey got spooked by someone coming out of the barn while at canter and pushed into a gallop with a little buck, just for a second. It was enough to send me soaring up out of the saddle and I came down hard, leaning way forward and grabbing at his mane. He calmed right down and I was able to regain my balance without falling, but my heart was in my throat. My teacher congratulated me for staying on the horse and attributed that to my balance. I attributed it to good luck and my deep desire not to break my arm or my back or anything else.

Speaking surrogate California family have had a run of bad luck lately, in which Mom has broken both an arm and a leg (by falling off the washing machine in the garage), Dad has had a pacemaker installed and Aunt broke her arm while ice skating. Today I got a call from J, he was in the ER with 5 year-old Wonder Boy -- he broke his arm and dislocated his elbow falling off the monkey bars at kindergarten. I can't tell you how thankful I am that I've avoided this trend.

Sorry, I lied before, there are no rainbows or ice cream in this post. I hope you will forgive me and keep reading.


  1. Hi Donna,

    I'm finally catching up here! How wonderful that you are cantering and good for you for staying on through a rough spot. That says a lot about your ability. It's a scary feeling, that out-of-control moment. Think about where you started from as a beginner and now you have succesfully ridden through a few bucks at a canter then gallop.

    Go girl go.

    Pax. Kimberly

  2. Just been catching up, and had to go and read that amish article which was horrible. I had no idea.

    I'm glad the riding is going so well. You sound like you're very adaptable on horseback now, which is the sign of a great rider. And I love that photo of your aunt!

  3. Gawd, I love to shop, but am increasingly torn between looking hip and not looking like a hipster. I mean, I just can't do gauchos for god's sake.

    I used to ride when I was a teenager and loved it - glad you're having a good time.

  4. Shopping... you already know about my vices in this regard.

    And hey... I LOVE the subtle additions you've made to your page... very Goth Glam... the raven, the ragged edges and stuff... very nice.

  5. Yeah, we are still going to have to go shopping. For what? Who cares. ;)
    Glad you stayed on Huey. Silly horsie.
    Ok. I can handle no rainbows...but PLEASE, don't tease me with ice cream!

  6. Ummm... can I just ask how you fall off a washing machine in the garage? Just a question.

    Yay for shopping - and you ARE worth it! And Huey sounds adorable, if somewhat frustrating.

    As for Stevie Nick's closet - you are right. But it still beats muffin-tops hanging over too-low jeans and bare bellies at work (no lie.) - Kym

  7. Donna,
    I save each of your posts in Bloglines, loving them and wanting to give them the comments they deserve. I keep failing, but I want you to know that I have very much enjoyed your writing lately, even if I haven't commented.
    Take care.