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...Balinese for "sore ass".

sunny 31 °C
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Yesterday, Mike and I went riding at the Umalas Stables in Seminyak, Bali. We opted for the 2-hour package, which was a ride through the rice fields and out onto the beach. It was really fun...but I think we oversold ourselves going into it.

Mike emailed them last week to set up a ride, and when they asked what our riding experience was, he of course said "expert." I'm pretty sure they saw this as an opportunity to get their "special" horses out of the stable for a change...mine had ADD. We took off from the stables in single file, as I expected. It seems that the horses had done the trail before. When we got to the beach, the leader asked if we wanted to canter for a bit, and we said yes. So he took off, and my horse immediately started to buck. Yeeee haaaaw! Did I mention that we're riding on Hunt Seat saddles? Nothing really to hold onto except for your own ass, which by the end of the ride was raw and numb from all the bucking/cantering/kicking. He finally started to gallop full on...there was no controlling this horse. I've been out of the saddle for quite awhile now, but it's the sort of thing you don't really forget, like riding a bike. When presented with the option to canter, this horse could either 1) jump and buck in place or 2) run headlong down the beach like a maniac. It got scary when he started veering from side to side of his own accord. I looked over at just the right moment to see Mike's horse go from a full on gallop to a sliding stop in the sand! He was lucky to not go over the front.

Aside from the near trampling of a bunch of little kids on the beach, and almost falling off and getting dragged by my stirrup, it was all gravy. The beach was sprawling and beautiful with lots of palm trees and huge rough waves. There was a nice sea breeze to keep us cool.

On the return trip, we passed by an open bit of short green pasture with 2 wooden frames, one at either end. I realized that it was a soccer field when I saw the kids with their ball, shooing a cow from the middle! Watch out for the cow patties! Also along the way we saw lots of baby chickens, a pig, and lots of cows with their calves. Now I see why the hamburgers here are so terrible - the cows are VERY thin...I wonder if it's the heat? They seem to have plenty of pasture.

We arrived back at the lovely stables just in time for the blisters on my hiney and inner legs to burst - luckily I was mostly numb by that time. The stables were really quite impressive. The walk way to get to the horses pastures and stalls was all stone with several bridges over little koi ponds, lined with tropical flowers and trees. We passed by the surface tension pool next to the restaurant on our way to drop the horses at the washing station. They have the most beautiful stallion (named Zorro) I've ever seen. I'm not sure what breed he is, but he was pretty small, black as night, with feathers (long hair on the lower legs and around the hooves), and the longest mane and forelock...the hair was about 3 feet long! I'll try to get some pics up when I get to a spot with wifi...too slow here at the internet cafe! We had the option to take a dip in the pool and stay for dinner, but we were too wrecked, sore and tired, so we headed out to nearby Kuta for a lobster/snapper on the beach.

The Ganesha Restaurant was lovely...lots of tables out on the beach, so we sat near the water and watched the sun set while enjoying our meal. There are several huge restaurants nearby, so there are tables on the sand for as far as the eye can see. Also nearby is the Denpasar International Airport, where we flew in 2 weeks ago, and we watched the planes land and take off into the night.

I had to keep shifting my weight from cheek to cheek...ouch! ...we got out of there just in time to avoid being serenaded by the onsite 4-piece band...if I hear "No Woman, No Cry" one more time....

Posted by kmpossible 20:00 Archived in Indonesia

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