Less than 24 hours after posting my intent, I found the barn through a bizarre long-distance connection I have, and I went right out Friday to have a look-see. We moved Monday. It was totally stealth, which is great for me, but begs the question of security at the old barn. I mean, anybody could have just drove up any old time, picked out a horse, and drove off. After all, I did. But they were legally my horses. The new barn fits most of my criteria.
- be 10 miles from my home or less
- be Parelli all the way
Not officially. But judging by how my horses were trailer loaded, I've chosen the right place. They did exactly what I would have done, with only a couple of minor things. Parelli Practitioners stand outside the trailer and Send the horse into the trailer. They got in the trailer and tugged on the lead rope (barely). That's fine. Everything else was perfect. The bonus is that the girl who runs the barn expressed a strong unsolicited desire to learn Parelli, and to go to Parelli Events with me. This may turn into a PNH barn after all. She's already a very Naturally-based person.
- be advocates for natural health and hoof care
And then some! She gave me the number of the holistic vet who lives just up the road. This vet can "see" inside the horse. I know it sounds crazy, but I've had strange enough experiences that I know it's possible.
- have no more than 12 horses including my two
Eight total, counting my two, with plans to build four more stalls and no more.
- be run by people who support what I choose to do for my horses and oblige my requests
Absolutely. They're very nice.
- cost half as much per horse as my current barn
Ehh, it's a little less. It's not more, that's the main thing. Unless it was a very fancy show barn, I would not expect to pay more than my old barn charged because the old barn had 30 acres, an outdoor arena, a round pen, and instant trail access to the metropark trails. This barn is on 13 acres. That's it. Barn, acreage, house, and pastures.
- have a round pen and arena that are actually open and available to be USED by the boarders as a round pen and arena to ride in
However. Not yet, but she plans to. They just bought the place last year on foreclosure and are working to make it the way they want it. The round pen is going up this summer, the indoor? Someday. More pastures will be fenced off and four more stalls added. So it WILL be that way if I can be patient.
- have two open stalls RIGHT NOW.
This is how nice they are. They didn't have the stalls all built yet. But the stall parts were "in", so she and her hubby spent all day Saturday moving stuff around and building more stalls so they'd have a place for my horses because she understood how concerned I was for their safety.
It feels like an enormous weight has been lifted. I feel lighter. I really do. Now I can go watch all of the Liberty & Horse Behavior course and actually start practicing it again! She has a truck and trailer. She's very interested in PNH. Who knows? I foresee play dates, a Parelli Playground, and possibly some clinics in our future. Even if I'm the only official PNH student, it feels better.
It feels like "home".