This week has been a good one. A really good one. The greatness of it all, and probably the only thing I will really write about, is the Fourth of July.
My mom was out of town, so I was planning to spend the day with my dad and "take care of him." You cannot imagine the sense of guilt I get when I think about leaving my dad, or anyone for that matter, by themselves on a holiday. My dad kept telling me that he would be fine... he would just go to the rodeo by himself and watch the firework show... by himself. That was supposed to make me feel better. Can you imagine?
After a lot of thinking, anxiety, and sorting out, we decided that the plan would be to go to the parade as a family (Dad, Allison, and I) and then spend the rest of our day with our own activities, or go to the rodeo and watch fireworks if we didn't have plans.
The parade was great. Of course, the guys from Ray's Chevron were the most entertaining... and the most good looking :) I liked standing with Dad and Allison and seeing so many people we knew walk in the parade. There's nothing like a small town Fourth of July.
At the Parade
Later on in the day, I was invited to go four wheeling and horseback riding with Jenna Davis and Melinda. I was excited to go, but almost couldn't bring myself to because I knew I would be haunted all day long with the guilt of leaving my dad behind, all by himself. But I did go, and I really enjoyed it.
We ended up going to the sand dunes... but not the ones that everyone else goes to. We went to some that were about a mile off the main road to the right. I never even knew there were sand dunes out there. But I was glad they did, because despite the usual busyness on the Fourth of July, these ones were completely empty and calm. We had the whole place to ourselves.
After a ride on the four wheelers, Jenna asked me if I wanted to ride the horses. I, of course, said yes, but just to make sure I would have no problems, I asked if her horses were nice. Jenna and her family assured me, "Oh yeah, you shouldn't have any problems. You've ridden before, right?" I nodded yes, but with hesitation. I didn't want them to think that that actually meant I knew anything. I've ridden before-- I still don't really know what I'm doing. They told me to hop on and everything would be fine.
This calmed me down, and I pushed all my little fears to the back of my mind. Why was I so worried anyway? I love riding horses. What could possibly go wrong? It's not like the horse is actually going to run away with me on his back!
After thinking all of this through, I jumped on that horse (Kip) with confidence. After about two whole seconds of comfortably sitting in the saddle, what do ya know?
He takes off.
No, he wasn't running, but yes, he was walking with a purpose. He knew where he wanted to go, and he was not about to listen to some inexperienced stranger sitting on his back. I grabbed the reigns and tried to steer him back to the rest of the horses. But he had other plans. He shook his head in the opposite direction. He headed straight up a pretty steep hill, over sagebrush and lava rock. I kept trying to get him to turn around, and he kept shaking his head. This went on for a few minutes. All the while, I had an audience of about eight people that I didn't really know. Great.
Finally, I took real control and told that Mr. Kip to stop! I said it really forcefully, like someone who has a lot of authority. I said to that horse, "WO!"
And that horse stopped.
He still wouldn't turn around, but at least he stopped. Finally Jenna's dad came and led me back. I was surprised at how calm I stayed. After that, Kip and the other horses that I rode listened to me. No more problems. It was so much fun to ride through the sand. I really loved it!
The only thing that could've made it a little better is if the sand we were walking on belonged to a beach in North Carolina :)
Jenna, Melinda, and I
I'm really good at going off baby jumps...
These two on the other hand... Not so graceful.
Don't worry, they didn't flip or anything :)
Horse back riding
Me and Dapper Dan. I loved this horse!
That's me riding the wild one, Kip
The sunset was so pretty!
This was my favorite picture from the night! It was so gorgeous!
Anyway, all in all, this years Fourth of July was a success. Everything went well, except I didn't spend it with my dad. I went home around ten to spend time with him, and guess what...
He was sleeping.
Guilt, guilt, guilt...
Until next time,