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12th May 2010

10:57pm: -

I'm beginning to think I was a lot more intuitive when I was younger. I was much better at life in so many way....and I was waaaaay better at catching fireflies.

Tonight I took my furballs on an evening jaunt- the sunset, which I just missed, was coming to a close and we headed for the woods. First, We made a detour by the river, where the smell of honeysuckles was so tempting that I had to reach out and pick one to see if I remembered how to taste it. I don't. Four destroyed flowers later, and I still couldn't figure out how to get to the nectar. As a kid, living in my grandparents' house, I would always sneak over to the neighbor's backyard to partake of the honeysuckle there with my sister or cousins. The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, and the honeysuckle are that much tastier....

But tonight, nothing. I seem to have lost my skillz. The air was still so fragrant though; so I reached out to examine another flower, and felt a voice urging me to take it. So, I plucked a small bouqet and it immediately occured to me how romantic God is; He's given us not one floppy, cheap carnation (Valentine's day in middle school anyone? *shudder*), not one gas station-side bouqet of roses, but an entire world of flowers. This small little sprig of flowers for some reason was a reminder of God's strong love for not only me, but all of us.

I continued on my walk, grinning by now, until I inhaled a tiny little bug. At this point I wretched so loud that Bart nearly jumped out of his skin, but alas! Too late! Bug successfully ingested. I made a mental note to close my mouth and continued.

A little later on, we headed for the deeper woods. I walk this same trail at least twice a week in daylight, and I know each nook and fork in the path by heart, but my eyes were of no use to me in the increasing dusk. Gradually the colors all faded into darkness and the contrast evaporated. Looking up from the path after locating a rock that trips me up even when I can see it, I spotted a pair of glowing yellow eyes staring at me from across the stream.

Creepiness factor? Check.

Suddenly, eyes were everywhere. EVERYWHERE. I saw them moving in and among the trees and hills above me, crossing the path ahead of me and behind me, watching me and then blinking into darkness again. I twirled the little flower in my fingers and the fragrance was a comfort, as corny as that sounds. Besides, Jack & Bart are totally dog-wimps but I could hear their tags clinking happily along on the path ahead, so I went on. As I reached the waterfall, a place where I usually stop, the opening in the trees allowed for a little light, so my eyes got some respite from the heavy darkness as the stars came into view. Here, where I seek God and pray, is where I rest. Here is where I can see clearly again.

Humbled, I turned around and looked back into the darkness. I had a sudden realization at this point.

The multitudes of glowing eyes that I had been seeing out of the perimeter of my vision that constantly ebbed in and out of sight- they were fireflies. I gazed into the darkened forest and saw hoards of them, moving up into the hills like torches carried by invisible hands. My knees almost buckled. I climbed out of the little valley made by the waterfall, accompanied by Dumb and Dumber, and re-entered the darkness, joined this time by fellow travelers in the night, all lighting up for a few glimmering seconds and then fading back into the pitchblack of the woods. I walked back the way I came and it felt like a dream. It was incredibly overwhelming. Everywhere I turned, they were there- and each time I approached them, they extinquished their lights, effectively vanishing before my eyes. Try as I might, whenever I tried to catch them in my hands to see them, they evaded me.

God moves precisely in this way.

The closer I seem to come, the farther away I seem. And the farther away I seem, the closer I am than I realize. This curious forest full of menacing eyes was in fact full of ethereal pilgrims. I am in a place in my life where I feel so alone, so afraid, and so insignigicant and hurt sometimes. And here God comes and pushes all that pain in my heart aside to say, "You are not alone, you have no reason to be afraid, and I love you." It was so gutwrenchingly intense; all I could do was stand there in the middle of the woods and watch (I managed to remember to keep my mouth closed, so not lightning bugs were harmed).

Finally, I made my way to the edge of the woods, back into the land of streetlights and cars and suburbia and leash laws, and all I could think was "wow. what just happened?" I was, and still am, physically weakened. On my walk back home, I laughed. Bug #2 ingested. Oh well.

I still don't know exactly what God just did in my heart. So often I carry a camera to document the things I love and know. I knew I couldn't capture what I had just seen on camera, and the only way I know how to capture life and capture what God does to me is through writing. When I was younger, I wrote. I felt so close to knowing who God is. Things did not stay that way but this is how I captured life. Perhaps this is how God intended me to do so.

11th May 2010

12:44pm: Gary Rockwell clinic

Saturday, after a little scrambling, I went to the Gary Rockwell clinic, which was VERY cool! Shannondale Farms, where it was located, is absolutely UH-mazing! Gary was really fabulous, I liked him much better than Ron Smeets. Plus, if you closed your eyes, it was literally like Tim Gunn was teaching the clinic.

Make it work, people.
Make it work, people.


I really dug his methodology, too. I took some notes, but not nearly enough. Unfortunately it was a three day clinic and I only caught a few rides... but at lunch I caught up with Tamara, and we were talking about the clinic and she said it really reinforced the idea that the work we're doing is quality work. I agree. It makes me feel good to know that what Tamara constantly busts my chops for is the same stuff that Gary was busting these others riders' chops for... and with far more frequency too. :D I am so fortunate to work with a top notch trainer. No, I don't have a big fancy show horse, no, I don't have a horse at all, no, I don't get to jump, No, I don't get to compete, No, I don't get to ride in clinics, but I have people who let me ride their ponies, I have a solid trainer, and I have a headstart on solid basics. I am very thankful to God for the blessings he continues to bestow on me in my horsey life! It's so encouraging.

In the loft after lunch, Tamara scooted off to talk to Gary about something he'd said in the clinic. I had been taking notes in my book, "Mastery" (which Tam gave me), and I was reviewing them. A man sidled up to me and suddenly asked, "So how are you liking the book?" I was so confused and startled that I turned red ( I was thinking WTF is this guy, the author?!) and said  "Yeah, it's great- have you read it?" It turns out this guy is former dressafe advisor to USEF, and a clincian himself, named Gil Merrick ( I am such a moron- I recognized him and blurted out, "Gil Anderson!!" but he politely corrected me)

The truth is out there; you just can't remember it correctly.
The truth it out there, and it's reeeeally embarassing.



So, Tamara came back and fortunately rescued me by maintainng an intelligent discussion with him. Then we returned to the clinic.

Without further ado, here are the brief notes I took from the clinic:

  • Rider/Seat
  • Always be thinking of "letting him up", and lifting the withers
  • When the rider goes behind the vertical, the horse's shoulder gets the brunt of the weight.
  • Pushing with the seat at canter pushes the shoulder down and confuses other aids because it overwhelms the horse.
  • Don't "come on, come on, come on" with the seat. Punch occassionally with the leg when neccessary.
  • Watch for third beat of canter- no downward pushing!
  • Look up, use corners, and see the horse out of focus.
Lateral Work
  • Too much lateral at halfpass kills the lift.
  • If the horse runs sideways, leg yield him back over to rebalance.
  • If you do your corner correctly, the horse is all ready in a shoulder in- don't pull him off balance with the inside rein. Draw the shoulder with the outside rein- knuckles aimed at where your shoulder-in is aimed.
  • Look down the track in the shoulder in to avoid too much bending to the inside.
Transitions
  • In transitions, think of the gait you are in, not the gaite you are about to be in! Ride each stride, don't anticipate or you will mud-up the gait you're already in. Don't overthink it! Just do it!
  • Transitions help with developing suspension in the gait.
Straightness
  • Straight Straight Straight!
  • Ride two different horses - the "left side" of the horse and the "right side" of the horse. Work on getting both horses equally supple and strong.
  • "What is it with you people and bending your horse to the inside! Ride him straight!"

12:16pm: lalala

Well it has been an interesting summer thus far (all two days of it!)- I took my last final Friday and it's so funny (as in strange, not humorous)- I set my sights on certain boys and getting their attention and then once I do, it's kind of like "Now what?"I ALWAYS do that. It's really not okay. It's typical conquest behavior and I loathe guys who do it, which makes me a big old hypocrite I guess. A guy in my class I'd talked to/worked with throughout the semester asked for my number so he could ask me about my  major since I "seemed to have things figured out" (HA!), and his hands were shaking so bad! Poor guy. I gave it to him, we'll see if I regret that later. I managed to dodge giving it out to another uber-obnoxious classmate but accepted his friend request on Facebook only to later realize that my number was posted there. Oops. I don't know. This guy (Zach) seems okay, and it's always nice to have a buddy down at Steate. He walked with me all the way to Piedmont, and I suddenly realized that and asked where he had parked,  and it turns out he had parked about six blocks in the other direction! Ha... Nice guy to put up with that at least. We'll see.

Michelle called me and told me I could ride Caronel!! Wahoo :) So I headed out to the barn, ate lunch in the boys' paddock (Hermes kept me company), and it was so peaceful and nice.

I rode Shadesbelly first, and he did pretty good work! It was super hot so we kept it to 30 minutes and he was still sweating like a hooker in church. I kept it to about 1/4 of the arena, and that helped with balance I think. We also did a lot of slow, easy walk-trot transitions, just gearing up and down really smoothly, and that worked wonders on relaxation and tempo. I wasn't so worried about roundness (just softness), and concentrated more on his responsiveness and my correctness. I trotted him over the trot poles til they were boring. I had them set up in reverse slant pattern before but it was WAY too hard for him:


(I laugh out loud whenever I see this photo) 




I also sat on Hermes and Shay led him around the arena! So very proud of my brave little toaster! I managed to clip 3/4 ( I am all about fractions today) of his muzzle too. Still working on desensitizing him... he's always been twitched.


The midget & me!

I rode Nell for about twenty minutes, she also got super sweaty. I spent most of the ride just trying to figure her out; it was ugly but pretty fun! She's got some good gaits, I got left behind at first! Dad & Cameron came out with los perros, and Cameron got to ride double on Apple with Trinity! 



Trin loved playing with Cam, I think she is used to babysitting a little because she basically had to raise her baby brother when she was in Canada with her mom. Dad was super quiet, but Cameron had a ton of fun. After he rode, he and Trinity drag raced in the golf cart and play tractor.



Cam cried so hard when he had to leave. :( Shay and Trinity picked me some really pretty flowers for the apartment, but I forgot to get a photo!! So cute though!

Shmes and Amber have been duking it out, Leslie has really been kind of sketchy lately but I don't even want to go there...so I won't. I'd planned a girls' night out cause I needed one dammit, and I was gonna let that stand in the way, so I just denied it basically. It ended up being really fun. Kim and the Gates girls came...and sodid Ms. Wendy, which I really don't understand, but whatever. Everyone was late (as usual) so Leslie and I met up at Applebee's  and got drinks at the bar. One daquiri later and I was so buzzed, how sad! My tolerance level was much higher when I was 16. It was nice to sit and talk, though catching up with her made me realize how old we are getting. Afterward, we met at Provino's, where I stuffed my darn face.

Gina found the salad paddles and told me to smack her, so I did. And they were LOUD- the entire restaurant went silent! That's when G decided to smack me back. Loud, and painful.  So that was embarassing. We went to Snellville Oaks but no one could agree on a movie, so I pointed out this little greek restaurant where we could go for dessert. We went, and we were a big, noisy crowd for that little place. Our waiter was beyond gorgeous,  I think I may have drooled a little. Gina commented (loudly) how no one could speak english there. We ordered dessert, and it was awful! Haha, but worth it. I was just worried that they were closed the entire time because we were the only ones there. Gina/Sara/Leslie's friend works there, so our waiter knew him. Finally, we got up to go and I am standing ath te counter paying when Gina smashes me against the counter and pantomines humping me (WTF.) in the middle of our conversation, so that was great. Hot waiter asks if we were going to see a movie and we explain that we can't decide and he said he was going to see one. I said, "Ironman 2, right?" (because it just came out and would have been great, but Ms. Wendy, who wasn't invited, didn't want to see it.) and he said "Yeah!" ,  so I turned to everyone else and said, "see, we shoulda gone!" so Gina of course had to be 9 years old and say, "Well why don't you two go on a date to see it together?" at which point, Hot Greek Waiter grinned and said "I wouldn't mind" while I resisted the urge to punch Gina in the ear. (The next day I got a text from Bobby : "So I hear you have a greek crush?" Um, yeah. as long as you quit texting me.) I didn't go see Iron man with HGW, but it was pretty awesome. :) 

Afterward G and I duelled in the parking lot. 





My dress was soooo short. I looked like a chunkmeister and a hoochie at the same time!

27th April 2010

6:30pm: Too late to change your mind...
Still can't find where home is...

Le sigh. I hate this "wait & see" crap. I feel like my whole life has been "wait & see" and it's really getting on my dang nerves lately. :( c'mon, can't we move on to the next lesson? or the previous one? or any other lesson in the whole world but this one?

I donno. Gonna switch gears and talk about ponies.

T has left. Which totally bums me out, but he was such a blessing to me. Not a lot of broke newbs like me get to sit on horses that have had SO MUCH training like he has, and not to mention he's supremely talented and a big puppy dog who was happy to teach me and didn't mind taking care of me when I totally effed things up...which I did...with considerable frequency. I am very grateful to have had that opportunity.

Despite my whining about the other stuff, God has kept me in a constant state of gratitude when it comes to the horses these past few years. I don't get to do a lot, but I get to do enough. More than enough. And I am fortunate. I am starting Hermes, and really really trying to get Shades. I think we're doing okay. I've introduced groundpoles with Shades because that was such a big help with Roman, and I think they are going to come in handy. I am going to start him over fences... I bet he'd be a good little hunter horse. I also incorporated the poles with Hermes when I lunged him the other day. He wasn't as enthusiastic about them as Shades was, but he'll be a cute lil jumper one day too. :) I am really excited I get to jump again. Even if it's in baby steps. Shades seems like he'll be really game for it, and once I get a tree to fit the Hermster I am going to sit on him. So... feeling good there. I am also teaching Trinity and Jaden lessons on Rosie...maybe will be taking them to a horseshow sometime this summer. Walton Co. Fairgrounds is really close to there and it's always a good place for kids to go. Rosie will clean up- she's an auto-pilot hunter pony.

So, horse life is good.

Social life, no. Spirtual life, no. Academically, well- I won't hold my breath for now. I just want to be done. I love school, but I can't afford it. I had my last day of my argumentative writing class today and I am LITERALLY so depressed!! hahaha. I always have one class per semester that I get really upset about leaving. I like my major, even if it's viewed as fluff.

Hmmm... maybe I will come back and whine later. Right now I just want to maintain the endorphin high I got from my feeble little run(stumble/walk) I got in from earlier.

7th January 2009

9:47am: January 7 2009

 

The winds in my life are shifting direction; there's promise of the storm on the edge of this breeze. Growing up.

When I was a kid, the phrase 'growing up' was chock-full of promises and dreams - it was a cup full to the brim of hope. Mainly a hope for escape. A hope for freedom, of fulfilled dreams and love and happiness and of a future overflowing with possibilities. 

Now I am a few years older, and the contents of that cup seem to be evaporating exponentially faster. 21, and no plans. No plans for plans. I’m young now!  I should be having an adventure somewhere, not keeping track of bank accounts, school, rent to pay, work schedules to adjust, team duties to fulfill, advertisements to sell, errands to run, figure-out-what-classes-to-take-so-I-can-get-the-hell-out-of-school-and-get-a-job-I-probably-won't-like-anyway, meet my soul mate so my parents end their suspicions of me being a lesbian, fix-the-toilet mundane lifestyle. I don't want this anymore.

I want adventure, I long for adventure...but where do I go to find it?
I'm sick of bullcrap answers like, "look around". 

Yeah,yeah, they tell you "you're young and it's all going to come together" - well they told me that I'd lose the “baby fat” when I was 7. Didn't happen. They told me that I'd figure out what career path I wanted in high school- I still don’t know. They told me a lot of things. I don't want to be 50 years old stuck in a job I hate wondering what happened to me.

I feel sometimes, like I am about to jump out of my skin.

 

This is nothing new. It's a dull, insistent, terror that is always lurking in the back of my mind and manifesting itself in obscure Freudian nightmares, but here I am, freaking out, clacking away at my keyboard in horror and hoping some solution will come about this way.

 

For a time, I went through this rebellious little phase where everything the government told me was a total lie. I refused to believe in the moon landings. Nothing would convince me, until three undisputable pieces of evidence came about:

 

  1. Radar images taken by a satellite reveal matching landscape to the photos taken during the original moon landing.
  2. When the space shuttle lifted off from the moon, the force of the expulsion disturbed the dust on the surface of the moon- since it has less of an atmosphere, not all of the dust settled, leaving a visible pockmark on the moon’s surface.
  3. There are footprints left by astronauts there; since the moon has virtually no weather, and there’s no life out there to mess with it, the footprints will remain for hundreds of years.

 

 I am deeply terrified that my life will amount to nothing, and I will leave no mark on this world. I am no Mother Teresa or Gandhi; it’s safe to say that people like them left craters. I just want to leave a footprint.

I've lived a pretty good life thus far: I've seen the vanishing glaciers in Alaska. I've been to New Orleans several times and experienced New Years on Bourbon Street, and the ghetto on the 4th of July. I've been touched by Katrina. I ride avidly and I've met some interesting people, lived in interesting places, and had interesting jobs because of it. Homeless people have shared with me their stories. I've prayed all night with a group of strangers. I've slept in the middle of the field with 1500 other people in protest of using children as soldiers, and I've given a speech about it and had the honor of opening minds and activating people. I've experienced a wonderful horse for six years who trained me as I trained him. I've spent hours playing with homeless kids. I’ve broken the law. I’ve kept secrets for friends. I've stage-managed plays. I've been broken down by God and built back up. I've walked away and come running back (again and again). People have taught me. I've taught people. I've trained horses. I harassed John Linder enough to get a response. I've let go of things.  Past and present relationships have turned me inside out. I've lived in the city, in the country, on a farm, and in the 'burbs with friends I've traveled state to state to compete in horseshows for free that I would not have been able to have paid for, ever. I've spent time with friends who will never, ever, ever leave my heart. I played hackey-sack with strangers. I get to experience communion with the creator of the frickin universe. I've been blessed.

I have not: swam in the English channel, ridden an elephant, fallen in love, backpacked - anywhere, worked as a trail guide in Colorado, seen the grand canyon, hiked the Appalachian trail, seen Europe, eaten spaghetti in Italy, eaten pizza in New York, been to the opera, worked in a shelter for trafficked people in South America, Africa, or East Asia, danced at a ball, ridden a bike around the French countryside, been to the leper colonies in India, seen Australia, seen the aurora borealis, seen a whale up close in the wild, touched a tiger, learned Ballet, learned to play an instrument (well), hung out in China, performed grand prix dressage, shown over fences, written a book, been on a safari, been in a real rainforest, worked in the zoo, worshipped in Israel, visited and stayed with friends/family for a long period of time, spent the night on the beach, lived with abandon, loved recklessly, and et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

I could go on and on about what I want to do. But my painkillers are kicking in.
I am deeply terrified of life passing me by.  I am deeply terrified of not trusting in God and using the gifts I have been given. I am deeply terrified of blowing yet another worthy man away out of fear and never falling in love.

I want to look back on my life and smile... if I don't make it to old age, that's fine. I won't let myself settle down until I've lived it up a little. God, don't let me settle down until I've made this life worthwhile.

2nd January 2009

2:29pm: Low Expectations lead to Big Success.
My New Years Resolutions for the Year:

hmm...

well, okay, so I haven't written any yet. I gotta have something, though! I mean, I am slightly ambitious deep down somewhere in my subconscious. I always want to change and get better and I have changed... I do n't know about the latter though because I keep looking back at the old me and I think the new me is a little  bit jealous. It confuses me. I don't see the changes but I know they are there.

Seriously though, these are them:

1. Lose weight.

2. Take Shades to a dressage show. 

3. Jump 2/9 courses efficiently, confidently, and comfortably.

4. Maintain a balance between dressage and hunter jumper riding.

5. Maintain and strengthen relationships between myself and my loved ones.

6. Save over $1,000 dollars.

7. Better manage my money.

8. Be a better student.

9. Be a better employee.

10. Regain the presence of Christ in my life;  learn to kneel and follow.

11. Do something reckless and dangerous.

12. Dye my hair.

13. Serve others.

14. Be more like the old me.



we will see!!!!



2:27pm:

 

Everyone who really rides, really falls off. All equestrians, at some point, come to terms with the fact that injury and death are not beyond the scope of things that could happen to them. It's not a fun discovery to make. You've got to put fear and worry on the back burner and focus on riding - if you think you're going to get hurt, you're right. You're going to get hurt. You get over it.

But sometimes, you get your confidence broken. My confidence has taken quite a beating lately. For the first time in eleven years of riding (and riding stupidly), I had to go to an urgent care center. I am lucky for this. Eleven years! Of riding like a moron, falling off like a moron, somehow defying all laws of physics and staying on-  and this is the first time I've had anything put me out of commission.

It's an old wives' tale among equestrians that falls come in three's. Someone jinxed the bejesus out of me.

A couple weeks ago, I was jumping an old hand around during a lesson. She's a typical hunter mare - knows her job, but full of piss and vinegar; and she had not been worked in about a month. So, not taking her previous empty threats seriously, I went for an oxer and she pulled a dirty stop. I came off, right into some instructor's chairs, but was able to continue the lesson a few curse words and bruises later.

Two days afterward, I was riding a filly I've been trying to get started, and who has every bit of the typical "chestnut mare" attitude people love to harp about. I cued for a canter too strongly, she bucked, and I never stood a chance. I came out of the saddle first try. Usually, bucking is not an issue with me!!

So, I am feeling like a crummy rider. That's fine. Monday, I was excercising Luke, a draft horse who is a total doll and loves to be in work. He's the type of horse that will jump anything you point him at - just not very well. So, I am riding him around and trainer says. "Jump something!"

Knowing my confidence had been rather shaken lately, I knew I had to jump as much as possible to get my groove back. (what little groove it was to begin with) I took him over a small, easy line- 1st jump: fine. 2nd jump: I didn't keep him forward enough, rode him in way to deep, and then jumped ahead. The result; he jumped THROUGH the jump and jumped me right out of the tack.

It's a long way down from Luke.  I hit the ground, heard something pop, and almost threw up.

I've never felt that amount of pain. Immediately, I tried to get up, and realized with another surge of horror that I couldn't move. Was my back broken? I wiggled my foot. Success. I tried to get up again. No such success. Bill was at my side in a moment, forcing me to stay down. By now, I was covered in mud. I had a handful of sand and I was squeezing it, trying to make that stupid sand feel like I felt. I opened my eyes, startled by the wheezing noise that I kept hearing, and as my mind cleared up, I realized it was my breathing.

After a couple minutes, I glanced up again. Both stablehands (one is my stalker, glad he was there to see me spread eagle on the ground) were standing there scratching their heads. One of the barn owner's kids was heading toward the arena in a golf-cart at full speed (a breakneck 9 mph). It felt like hours before I could move, but finally I was able to get to my feet.

Long story short, I got to an urgent care unit, covered in mud, and proceeded to filthy up their office and give my parents 9 consecutive heart attacks by trying to tell them what was going on over the phone. This was the most humiliating physical examination ever. It made public scoliosis screenings in middle school feel like a walk in the park.

So, first off, Doc checks my spine. My whole spine. Did you know that your spine goes down to your buttcrack? I do now.

 As he sticks his hands down my pants, (soaked through with mud), he goes, "hope you don't mind!" uh, well, I guess not? As he's poking my back, making me lean around, he goes "aha!" right as I go $@*%!!!(!!!!

Later on, the nurse comes in with a shot of Tordisol for the pain. Hallelujah! Then she says, "drop your pants and bend over." Dammit. Why do they always go for the butt?

Then, more rapturous joy, as they tell me to strip down and get in a hospital gown. I'd like to, if I could bend over far enough to get my half chaps unzipped, my boots pulled off, and my now stuck-to-me wet breeches peeled off. Somehow I managed - remembering in horror that I hadn't shaved my legs in... um, a long time - and so I waited for my x-rays, dirty, hairy, and resigned to my doom. Only the promise of heavy narcotics was keeping me motivated at this point.

So, the man came to x-ray me. Complimented me on my big hips (??!!!!!!) and told me that he had seen no fractures, but would be sending the x-rays to a radiologist to double check.

When I got back into my room, my trusty dad was there waiting for me, having driven down to Suwanee from Canton. I was prescribed Loritab, Reboxin, mega-Ibuprofen, and three hot showers a day.

And no riding for 2 weeks.

:(

I suppose I can use this time to work with Ho-ho on the ground; there is much to go over. And I guess maybe these pills aren't so bad; I feel like throwing up all the time and so hey, maybe I will lose some weight? Whatever. I'll be back in the saddle in a few days (or whenever my back wants to stop screaming at me), working on getting my mini-groove back. Hopefully it was there to begin with.


29th November 2008

11:37pm: On the train to funky-town

It's my livejournal, and I can do whatever I want!

 

 Small group had thanksgiving dinner Tuesday night and to wrap it all up, we decided to rent a movie.


Jesse had given me a free movie rental pass for driving him down to the airport so we decided to rent Tropic Thunder. Two words: not. funny. But, it reminded me of this video, which WAS funny. Ben Stiller: bad dancer.  Jack Black: I knew he'd be half-naked by some point in this scene.  RDJ: Smooth as heck.

 

14th November 2008

10:10pm: I feel that adding a description would only take away from the hilarity that will now ensue:


Who needs standards when you have e-harmony??

2:40 Get down with yo bad bad self, Mr. Base Guitar!

8th November 2008

9:20pm: Completely boring, jumbled, and long.
I am writing this while half frozen and half asleep- I just like to keep up with my own life for some reason. Things don't always register for me, the first time around.
 So this is nothing intelligent or insightful.

Last horseshow of the semester was last weekend, up in Clemson. I still don’t know which of the Carolinas we were in. It turns out that Bill, our trainer, is from the area. F.E.N.C.E was hosting City League at the same time it was hosting our IHSA show; so needless to say, the place had a lot of activity. As soon as we got in, we immediately changed into our Halloween costumes for the Halloween party Vic was throwing at the showground. I changed into my Greek goddess costume (goddess remaining a loose term, considering the “gown” was 90% polyester) the others in costumes that didn’t reach past their knees. Kathleen forgot her costume, so she proceeded to call her mother to blame her for the whole thing. We pieced together a costume for her out of Emilie’s boyfriend’s field jacket.

 

We stayed at a Bed and Breakfast right out of a movie- probably a horror movie- the owner was of course a very old, kooky lady who was nothing but hospitable to us (though Emilie swears that at one point, when the woman went behind a swinging door, as the door swung back around, she saw the woman standing there staring eerily at us). We found out later the place used to be a funeral home.

Which, you know, just adds to the charm of the whole place.

 

We arrived at FENCE and there was a big closed off tent adjacent to the indoor, with lots of tables and lots of rich folks inside. We got there just in time for the award ceremonies of a grand prix we’d just missed, but there was still a keg and some chili left. Bill knew everyone there ( or everyone knew Bill ) – it was his son “Lil’ Vic” putting on City League, and Billy and Liza were there too. Joanquil and Maddy were both there- dressed as naughty schoolgirls- a novel idea, really! I think I was the only female under age 30 who wasn’t wearing a costume name with the prefix “sexy” or “naughty”. Ray stayed long enough to get us beer and then left in a huff for some reason only beknownst to him. Peter, Katie, and Devon were also there, being cute as usual. Peter kept walking up to us with fake limbs and rubber body parts and asking, “Does this gross you out? How about this?” while we were eating.

 

The kid will no doubt be an Olympic hopeful in 8 years or so, but right now, he’s just a kid.

 

It wasn’t really fun, but it was interesting. Some kid kept hovering nearby, and Bill asked him if his dad was riding yet or if he had all ready, but I don’t know if he was a Russell or not. For the rest of the weekend’s events, every time I looked up and around, he was looking at me. It was kind of odd. A weird guy came over and waited for Bill to introduce us, but after he didn’t, he skulked off, at which point, Bill turned to us to give us advice about the men at City League: Don’t talk to them. We left after a while and went back to our haunted little B n’ B.

 

The next morning, after an awkward and unpleasant breakfast, we went back to F.E.N.C.E. Emilie is nice enough, and even Jackie isn’t bad 35% of the time, but the other 65% of the time and Kathleen’s nasty attitude pretty much make me withdraw completely and pretend not to notice their rude remarks and petty backstabbing. It has been draining me, so I have got to put up some serious boundaries and learn how to manage them now or I will be insane, or worse- just like them- by next year. They pour out to me and tell me about their little lives, and I listen and try not to pass judgment internally and I try to give sound input, but I don’t reveal anything about myself. It works well, since they don’t ever ask.

 

I had a pleasant surprise when Aunt Helen, Samantha, and Aunt Helen’s mom came to see me. It was so great to see friendly, humble faces among vultures (Bill and Emilie had been gone all day). They got there in time to see me come in dead last on a miserable, angry pony that gaited instead of cantering and pitched at least 3 random fits. Oh well; luck of the draw! After that embarrassment, I drug them over to another arena (the girls took the golf cart) to watch one of Bill’s other students ride. I unfortunately only had 15 minutes to spend with them and they drove 45 minutes both ways to basically watch me lose! Jackie came over with the golf cart to inform me we were leaving and to get on the cart, and nearly blew a gasket when I said “No, I will meet you at the van after I walk them to their car.” I hated to see them go, especially knowing the company I would have to keep for the next 36 hours. However, to her credit, Jackie did feel bad after I told her I hadn’t seen them in six years; that’s proof that she at least kind of has a soul.

Fortunately for me, Emily Heidt showed up with Andrea, and they were both good company. We returned to the Bed and Breakfast o’ death to shower before heading back out to a pub for dinner where more old men (probably horsemen) hit on us, but to make up for it we had the cutest waiter ever. Afterward, we went back over to F.E.N.C.E for a grand prix. We got in free because of Bill. He went around introducing us to everyone as “his girls”. He even snuck us into the $1,000 per table tent party, which was fascinating to me. By the end of the night, he was completely sloshed and kissed all of us on the head before sending us home. It was really quite amusing! Anyway, in the tent, while we were waiting in line to get drinks, an old man came up behind us.

He immediately started in with the “Hey, you college kids! What are you doing here, college kids?”

I didn’t know how else to respond, so I said, “ Waiting in line. What are you doing here?” while carefully covering the wristband I wore that was proof of my plebian identity.

“I’m old and rich, I belong here! What are you doing here?” He kept on with it, but he was friendly enough and we were able to change the subject by talking about his horses (works every time with horse people).

It felt so strange, being in that tent. Before the grand prix, there was a “Wild West” show where trick riders came in and shot exploding balloons from their mounts. When the announcer introduced a mustang who’d been broke for under a year into the ring, I felt the “Oh!” rise up in the crowd around me and it felt like, I don’t know, like I was an orphan at the opera or something. We finally came out of there and Bill introduced us to Lincoln Russell, his nephew. Nicest guy in the world! We finally went and sat down in the bleachers with the rest of the middle class, to watch the Grand Prix. When the announcer brought in Lincoln Russell, the entire place went nuts. Apparently he’s pretty famous in the area, and he’s among the top riders in the world.

Jealous.

            Anyway, so I sat there, alone with my cranberry and vodka and my envy because the other girls were whispering among themselves. My night brightened when during the jump off, the fastest rider thanked God silently and publicly after an amazing round. He ended up winning later on, but the act itself made me glad. We ended up going back to the pub and demanding the same waiter. As we all poured back into the streets and simultaneously regretted not saying goodbye to him, he popped out and waved goodbye.

Then we returned to the B n’B.

         The next day was the second day of the IHSA competition, and go figure, I placed first with no one there to watch me. When I exited the ring, I looked to my team mates, and none of them said a word to me. Bill excused himself to get back to the other horseshow, and I just chucked the ribbon into the van. It was worthless to me. I rely so heavily on other people’s approval and recognition, and when I don’t get it, it eats my lunch. The next day, I went out to ride Holly & Bill congratulated me about the ribbon and pointing out of my division and told me I’d deserved it- by then I had all ready sucked it up and forgotten and didn’t even know what he was talking about. Later on, though, he told me he was proud of me “and my little horse” (he probably has plans of making me fall in love with her and then making me take her- he’s all ready offered her to me for free; too bad I am broke.). That simple statement made me feel ten times better, especially after the negative drive out to the barn with the girls and Marcela telling me “she didn’t even know what I did” for the team after all the hard work I do.

 

After I turned Holly out that night, I waited under the stars and breathed God’s fresh air while I waited for them to come pick me up. He reminded me of how beautiful the world is outside of my little problems and how He gave me great gifts and made me a truly beautiful person- I don’t need to prove anything to anyone- God notices me, God loves me, and I am here to glorify Him, not myself. I’ve been listening to Mutemath a lot lately and “Chaos” has really helped to ground me in God’s truth.

 

 



Plus, the band just rocks.
 

29th October 2008

11:57pm:
I found myself strolling through the aisles of Party City this morning, looking for a last minute (very last minute) halloween costume for the exhibitor's party Friday night...apparently you must dress up to get in, and we must attend because Bill's son is the one throwing the party. It's always a grand event, evidently.

All I know is, if some other chick is wearing my cheap felt costume too, Ima get kuntry up in thur.
Or, if no one else is dressed up!

Anyway, so I am strolling down the aisle, looking at "Sexy cheerleader", "Sexy cop", "Sexy nurse", oh and let's not forget the ever original"Sexy playboy bunny" costumes, and thinking, every single one of these costume models looks like they belong in a porno. Seriously. One step away from modeling at Starship enterprises. Someone let me on that money train!

Not.

Coincidentally, when I got on my laptop to get some homework (facebook) done, I happened to notice an article's headline reading "Guy's guide to Halloween: What a woman's costume says about her." So I thought frantically, Oh God, what does "greek goddess" say about me?! (back off. It's the only costume that didn't make me feel like I was going to get picked up off the street) I clicked on the article, and what are the first few lines?

"You may be more concerned with the economy or the upcoming election to really worry about your own Halloween costume. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't pay attention to the outfit a woman's wearing on the 31st. You can use her costume to figure out what she's really about!"

ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME?!!!?!@?!@?!!??!

Not that I care about freaking corporate bail-outs, international affairs and mudslinging fools shimmying up the political ladder. No, the only thing occupying my pretty little head is the message my Halloween costume (which will be worn for a tortorous 4 hours and then shucked off and probably burned) sends out, and who I should hook up with based on costume compatibility.

Wgergjopwewerjrq213914-12i-141i2i12i412124fkosav;sVMAB

27th October 2008

9:53pm: I am
I am so dreadfully exhausted.
I know I am running. I'm trying not to. I'm trying to keep my chin up, trying to remain calm, trying not to fly up and out of here.

I'm having thoughts of fleeing the state. Changing my name, starting fresh. In a small town, with a mountain somewhere nearby and a close close net of friends, and God, and lots of horses, and someone who loves me, and no one else. No one else to blow up my cell phone (speaking of cell phones, if there were an ocean nearby, I am sure mine would be waterlogged by now), no one else to tell me what is required, what they've done and what I should  be doing, that I am wasting my time with this and that and the other, no one tn'o laugh condescendngly at me and completely misunderstand the very nature of who I am.

I just want to ride.
I just want to love and be loved.
I just want to ease and erase the stamp of suffering.
I just want to worship God and have joy.
I just want to change things.
I just want to remain apathetic toward everyone else's opinion about me that doesn't matter.

Is it that much to ask?
The twisted part, is that I can do all of these things.
I beleive some sort of lie that someone else, something else is stopping me.

but it's just that
I'm
so
tired.



I am feeling so E.E Cummings right now. I just want to sum up my feelings with an 'et cetera'...





23rd May 2008

3:50pm: shake shake shake shake sh-shake it

For your viewing pleasure:

shake it

I have been meaning to get photos of Leslie's place because it is a hop-skip-and-a-jump away from being my dream home, but I keep forgetting. One day. :) 

Holly has officially gone insane. 

On my way home from psycho-mare, I stopped at the Westin to have lunch with my dad because I haven't seen him in about a month. He'd been away in Jordan; he came back a week ago but has been living at the Westin south of ATL for some airforce conference. Arcent (whatever that means) deals with middle-eastern allies only, so I have met a lot of interesting military figures, Jordanian princes (figureheads mostly) and all that jazz. Today, as I walk into the hotel, stinky and hot and dirty from riding in the muggy heat, Pop deems it fit to inform me that I should comb my hair or something because he will be introducing me to people. 

And the water was off, also, so I was pretty much a hot mess.  

Nevertheless, I met all these important people in my horsey attire (part of horsey attire includes a thin layer of dust, by the way) and tried not to embarass my dad. The first man was from Jordan, and he was the most talkative- he told me his children's name and what they mean: Ayaat, sign of God; Abdula, servant of God; and something something, servant of The Merciful. He was very excited about Allah; it makes me want to crack open the Qu'uran and just take note... I wonder often and heavily about the parallels between Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. Just different versions of the same story, or more than that? 

I also met a Pakistani man, and three american female captains- one of them told me she didn't know what her job was for the week, except to "be a girl". I thought, "wait what?" but didn't have time to ask her what the heck she meant by that. It took me forever to eat lunch because I kept being introduced to all these people- finally my dad brought me over to a table where three men from Oman were sitting in white robes and when I went to shake hands, one of them politely declined;they were all very nice but when one of them told my dad I was 'beautiful' the others looked embarassed. I think it may have been disrespectful of me to shake hands but the same one who called me beautiful asked what I was studying, and remembering the awkward pause after answering "english" to another person, I said " I think I'm going in to be an english teacher" and he said "Good, teaching is a good job for the ladies." 

And in my head I was like, really ticked off, but in response I just said "So when is your plane leaving tonight?" with a big old cheesy grin on my face.

Still though, that is the exception. There were other people at the hotel gawking unabashedly at all of the people we were eating with; you could just see the wheels turning in their heads. It's funny how that works. The first Jordanian colonel I talked to kept telling me to come to Petra; I wonder if people there would gawk at me

The woman I had talked to earlier who said her main job was to 'act like a girl' accompanied my dad to Jordan (along with 9 other women) to do a symposium for Jordanian women who wanted to join the army. It's just been opened up to them. It's a strong contrast to the story I heard recently about a woman in Saudi Arabia: Saudi gang-rape victim is jailed which really, really, really really really really made my stomach turn.

Before I came to lunch, I was talking with the stablehand at Leslie's,Querrino. He had been in the mexican army and apparently left after a couple years because it was SO crooked- the army there is not used for quite as imperialistic purposes as ours; however apparently you can buy them off and send their men to Iraq, too- but anyway, he said that his main job was drug raids on cartels coming up from South America. He had to flee Mexico because they knew who he was and drug dealers would have his head on a plate if they could. 

Crazy. 

I guess everywhere is crazy.

15th May 2008

3:35pm: Wow.

I have returned...actually this post probably signifies a return less than a random blip in the tiny little area of my brain called 'attention span' but nevertheless, I am on LJ. And much has changed. For instance, there is a hell of a lot more russian people than before.

At least it seems that way.

Reading back over my old posts have made me feel nostalgic and somewhat melodramatic. I have changed...good and bad. I may have been overdramatic back then but at least I was honest. Getting me to talk now (about anything of substance in my life, idle chatter is my forte) is like pulling teeth.

Shall we catch up?

Let's shall:

I finally followed through with finding a home for ze Poochmeister. He never really got sound again. I don't want to talk about it really, I have talked about it too much. 

I have also moved from D'ville- Heifer went to villa rica, Monty was given to a young rider; and Chris as well as a couple others went with Barb & Nar to Missouri. I got into GA State, moved to Canton for a few months, then headed to Downtown Atlanta. That was fun for about a year, and now I am here (as of 2 weeks ago) in Lawrenceville living in a house with 5 other girls. It's a ministry house type deal... people are in and out of here all the time. We have a lake in the back, with crazy ducks, geese, turtles, and other little woodland creatures. If you park your car here for more than 3 consecutive days, it's pretty much guaranteed that you will drive away with "Covenant Scum" or "Master Cheif 4-ever" written at least somewhere on your car windows.

I have continued riding; in fact I started jumping again (at a super swanky place, my new trainer has connections) and I have been riding about once a week out at Serenity. Jubils is gone :( So are other horses and people, but I still get to ride Shades, Corona, and occassionally a super nice mare named Allure. I started a TB/Hano filly named Holly a few days ago...thus far she has taste-tested my back as I was handling her front feet and tried to cowkick me, but she is a cutie. 

On a more interesting note, I fell off Monday night :) As usual, it was hilarious. They got a new mare in who had been stopping at jumps, named Ally. They told me she was great on the flat though. So I rode her in a lesson with Dayna and Mr. Bill- lo and behold- she stops at jumps. I am a pretty weak jumper anyway (hel-lo, dressage rider) and it had been a few months since I'd ridden huntseat, so I was wobbly- but her 4-5th refusal of a jump (2'6 for Petes sake) packed a whallop, and I flew off to the outside (I don't reall understand the physics of it all) and proceeded to bounce- no lie - for several feet. I actually had time to stop and wonder when I was actually going to stop bouncing. 

I twisted my knee but it was pretty funny. I proceeded to get back on, crop in hand, and call her a plethera of cuss words I am not entirely sure I knew before I rode her. I rode her again yesterday, no prob bob. 

I am going to Augusta this weekend to visit my preggo friend and her husband...i cant beleive i am really this old.

17th December 2007

7:01pm: *sigh*
Damn it. 

he's been driving me crazy since June. 

i hate my life.

27th June 2007

10:19pm: Oh, Shit.
Here is the part,  where I dive into a bed and scream as loud and as long as possible into my pillow and kick my feet and bang my fists.

but I have no bed.
nor do I have a pillow.

So I'll just scream.

31st May 2007

4:31pm: No offense to anyone really; friend me and I will friend you back. 
Billy, get a livejournal. :D



30th May 2007

6:31pm: I had a lesson today on Jubilee, and...

I am disgusted. Ugh. In the worst way.
UGH. 
People disgust me. 
And I don't know why I tolerate them sometimes, honestly. But I do. 
I'm retarded.

And by the way, whoever said horseback riding isn't a sport, has never ridden dressage, and should be shot and then buried and forgotten about because they have never attempted to acheive a collected canter on a bucking, bolting, leaping FREIGHT TRAIN thank you very freaking much. 

EVERYTHING hurts.
Everything. 

Current Mood: hissy-fitty

27th May 2007

1:02pm: There is a little mess on the window of blood and feathers where a bird flew into it.
I can't tell whether to laugh or cry. 

I probably won't ride today; I rode Apache and he was brilliant as usual, I think I can canter him again by the 15th. I wanna go trail riding but no one is around to ride with me, this place is gorgeous and I ride all alone. 
(it's all your faults) 

The other afternoon I showed up, and I found the hose lying on the ground from where I had bathed Apache two days earlier- his water bucket, bone dry. Full of sticks and dirt. He hadn't been watered in two days. Right as I saw this I heard laughter, and two of the woman's daughters come strolling down the long driveway swinging shopping bags in their hands. I went around, checked all the other water buckets. One bucket had two inches of sludge in it. 

Oh, the friggen irony. You'd think that girls who have it all, have 15 horses and a beautiful place to live with woods and pastures and 15 HORSES, would maybe think to water their 15 horses.

I was driving up toward Athens and Amber Fellows was in her car very far behind me, so I was going about 40 mph on 78 waiting for her, and suddenly this car comes screaming past me; the engine obviously going at its fullest capacity. A minute later a cop drives leisurely by with his sirens on. I thought it was kind of cool; I can picture myself just getting fed up and speeding away from the cops.

I wouldn't. Because I'm usually too low on gas and bravado, for that matter.

Horsies to work, horsies to work.

24th May 2007

9:40pm: Target >>>> Wal-Mart. Thanks.
Apache accidentally smushed me today. It was totally my fault, I actually pity him because he was absolutely horrified with what he'd done. 

So I moved him, I donno if I posted that, but yeah, I moved him to this woman's (H-H-HUGE ) house and it's actually a great place, perfect for getting him sound again, but it's just her personal property and horses. She's doing me a big favor. So I was riding him around watering all the pastures.  

There is one pasture that has a creek that runs in front of the fenceline. There is about 2-3 feet of space between the fence and this creek, not enough room for Apache so I dismounted and was standing between the fence and the creek, trying to drag the hose to put it into the water bucket, and I had Apache's reins in one hand, encouraging him to get a little closer because he was standing on the other side of the creek and my arms/reins weren't long enough to reach the water bucket AND him.  He was like "Oh I'm not so sure, I don't know..."

And I was like "just step a little bit closer" and he was like "OKAY I'M COMING" and I saw his little wheels turning and I watched the thought pop into his mind "I'm just gonna jump it" and before I knew it he leaped OVER the creek, smack into me, I got smashed into the fence then fell down and his hind leg landed on MY leg. 

On top of all this he pulled his stifle because he fell backwards again. Only a little bit. But still.

He tried to take care of me, took his weight off my leg as soon as he could and tried to get out from over me, his facial expression was "OHMYGOD I JUST KILLED BETH" Poor Apoochy.

My leg hurts. And my shoulder. Mostly my leg.

Christian has been behaving well; the other two are on an antiBeth kick.

I am in a heated debate with my film art teacher.
The reason:
He's a butthole.

That is all.

17th May 2007

12:19am: mmkay.
I'm about 5 minutes away from a temper tantrum.

14th May 2007

1:56am: I did it.
I was an evil bitch.

And now I feel sorry for myself. WHAT in the world is wrong with me? I think I may be the most indecisive person I know. Or maybe I just like to destroy things that I shouldn't destroy.

I am writing in this LJ to stall on going to bed and having nightmares. It's the strangest thing. It's people I know, but they're all scary and stuff. And I wake the whole house up screaming.

I am becoming my mother...

Heifer has made a lot of progress. Monty is wonderful (I think he thinks he's Fonzi from Happy Days though). Christian is indignant. Apache is lame but he tries so hard. I haven't gotten a call from the people at Cavalry, or at Moira's, to ride their horses, and honestly I really don't want that call.

Heifer's owner has no intention to pay me for the work I have done. I don't think she ever did. Apparently Heifer's not for sale.

Burn...

8th May 2007

9:40pm: raaahhhhrrrrrr.
I had to come back to Lilburn, AGAIN. No one will take care of the dogs and that worries me.

My dad is currently swearing at the TV. Very angrily. My sister is cackling on her cell phone. I hate it here.

I rode Apache, mostly walking on the hills, about 5 minutes worth of trotting. I haven't ridden him in a week, because last time I did, he went lame, and I was so disgusted I just vowed off riding him forever. But that's not gonna happen cause I like to ride him because he's fun.

Monty was doing great and I was so happy the whole week last week with him(beautiful gaits, shoulder ins, leg yields, half passes). Barb came to watch and he was a flaming butthole. I literally thought he was going to take us through the fence.

Heifer's owner is beginning to piss me off. I am fixing her mess, and she continues to put us back at square one sgndgdfnTHREE TIMES. Then she pushes me to push Heifer into things she is not ready for. Whatever. I'm not going to sacrifice Heif's mental well being or safety for that woman's vanity.

Christian is fat and sassy.

My dad is very depressed about this whole pregnancy thing (not mine). He doesn't want to live in the place that they are moving to. He's about to lose his job. People kick him around like he's a soccerball. I feel very sorry for him.
Current Mood: aggravated

3rd May 2007

1:10pm: look what I found.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1G470rfJQCI

(I fixed the link.)

DFGJKEGJKWhwh
pegjgfsdgjdkg'dhkbj'dfbadfbknafdb
10:30am: Oy Vay.
I think I just made a terrible mistake. And to correct it, I have to be an evil bitch.

I wish I could talk like those people in 1945esque mob films. They got style. And they all sound so mad. I just sound drunk when I talk.

Um, so yeah. The plan was to be out of this house by June but my mother just sped up the process, REALLY quickly. Most of my stuff is all ready in Dawsonville now; I've only got a few things left here. I am not going to tell everything that happened because some of it, I have no right to tell, but my mom told me Sunday evening that she had the cops on the way to this house, where I was alone.

All my stuff was packed by 4 AM.

It's a little hard to beleive, that I won't live in this house anymore. I could open my window and there was nothing but trees and greenery for about a mile (well all that changed courtesy of an expanding urban population). And when I was little I used to dig for diamonds on the bank of the little stream that went through the woods, until it became strewn with sewage and garbage. And my sister and I used to catch waterbugs and tadpoles and keep them in jars full of leaves and sticks and mud. They always died though, so I guess our little biosphere jars just didn't cut it, but we thought they did. We used to ride bikes with a couple other kids in the neighborhood, and I thought I was a bad mamajama because I could ride down a steep little hill, until I faceplanted and got a hematoma and a sprained ankle.

But everything's changed now, there are houses now instead of hills. And rednecks on ATV's where we used to go and eat picnics.

It's gone. It's okay. There is a creek in Dawsonville, that ISN'T full of human waste. And I will be able to look out my window and see Apache.

Though Jenny and Shay don't want him to go, I just can't afford to keep working my butt off at training barn, when my horse is too lame to train half the time. It doesn't make sense. This woman told me I could keep him on her property for free (she has 69 acres) and that sounds about right. He needs a month or two with LOTS of room to stretch.

I hope to keep training at my barn, and to keep seeing people (that I like) from Lilburn. The social life in Dawsonville, well... no.
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