Monday, July 16, 2012

Maddeningly Unhelpful Monday

Remember when I used to give unhelpful advice *every* Monday? Ah, the good old days. Well, today I'm back with some advice that will be so useless to you, you'll make sure not to thank me.

But first! How about something you might actually want?? Over at Friday the Thirteeners we're giving away a prize package of 13 books. They're books we wish we would've written first. So basically they are thirteen of the most awesome books ever. You should go enter the contest because who doesn't want thirteen free books? Enter here.

Back to being unhelpful. This past week we spent some time in Zion's National Park, Utah. What a beautiful place. The colors and canyons and scenery were AMAZING. But what someone didn't tell me was they set the temperature to SCORCH for our arrival. It was hot. So what did we decide to do? How about spend the day horseback riding? Sounds like something anyone would do on a nice 111 degree day, right? The correct answer is, no. This is what insane people do. Also, more advice--when someone says: Do you want to take the most adventurous horse ride in the United States? You say: No thanks. Can you point the way to 'horse rides for beginners' or 'the strolling horse ride through flat, shady pastures' or even 'pony rides are us'?

You should definitely not say, sure why not. After all we could count on one hand how many times the lot of us combined had ever sat on a horse. So why not spend four hours on the back of one? They assured us this wasn't a problem. Beginners were just cowboys waiting to happen. (Okay, they didn't say that last sentence but I think that's the motto engraved on their very experienced cowboy hearts.)

So off we go. Me, my husband, and three of our children, smiles on our faces, the fear we should've felt far from our minds. I won't go into too much detail, but let's just say by the time we stopped for lunch my husband thought he might have the early stages of heat exhaustion and our sandwiches looked like balls of goo. The rest of the ride involved a run straight up the side of the mountain where the wrangler warned us: "Do NOT let your horse stop on that mountain or it will be bad news for you. You must run all the way up." Um.....yes I was terrified. Along the trail, my husband's horse decided, it too was a bit hot and kept sitting down. SITTING DOWN. With him on it. It was craziness. And my horse liked to be in the front of the pack, no matter where we were in line. And in order to get there it liked to run.

All joking aside, it would've been a pretty amazing ride if it wasn't so hot. Apparently us city dwellers don't know how to prepare for heat like that spent on the back of a horse. By the time we got back, I could hardly walk and I poured a whole bucket of water over my head (kind of like Hugh Jackman did in the movie Australia....except I had my shirt on....and I was a sweaty mess......and I don't have awesome muscles.....okay, it was nothing like Hugh Jackman).

So, my advice restated? When given a choice always opt for the pony ride through the lush green meadow on a breezy spring morning. And watch Australia because that Hugh Jackman scene is really awesome.


  1. I don't think I could even get my husband on a horse! LOL Sounds like an adventure!:D

  2. Did you go through the Narrows afterwards, that probably would have cooled you off? Me and horses don't get along. I haven't been on one since a disastrous YW's camp back when I was 12.

    1. No, we didn't. We were planning on it but didn't realize the horse thing was going to be an ALL DAY thing. When we were done we had just enough energy to plop ourselves into the hotel pool.

  3. Hysterical! (I myself <3 horseback riding) Despite the heat, it sounds like a great trip. I've never been to Utah! (East Coaster here;))

  4. Haha, what an adventure. I was worried about the heat down there for you guys, considering it was around 100 up here. I love riding, and miss my horse all the time. But there's a huge difference between having your own horse that you train and ride all the time and renting a trail horse for a few hours. Trail horses are.... interesting creatures. They usually have some weird or ill-behaved habits. Like sitting down or cantering to the front of the line. Glad you all survived! :P

  5. *Makes sure not to thank you for this advice*

    That sounds like a really horrible day! Still, it would have been an entertaining ride (for spectators, at least).

  6. Dear friend,
    I have never ridden a horse...but won't mind the opportunity if it was there. Love your sense of humor.

  7. Two confessions:

    1 - I'm deathly allergic to horses.
    2 - I still haven't seen Australia.

    Can we still be friends?