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Sunday, October 17, 2021

Girls' Saturday

Recently Brandon and I decided to start having boy's day/girls' day.  Brandon wanted to start doing Boy Things with the boys, so we decided to spend one Saturday a month doing splitting up so that each of us could enjoy doing things that maybe wouldn't appeal to the entire family.

For our first Saturday, held in September, the girls stayed home and did some online shopping for horse show clothes, watched videos of how to do nail art, and then practiced on each other.  The boys went out into the mountains and scouted out camping and fishing locations.  It was a lot of fun, if only because I had four children to talk with instead of seven.  Three fewer makes a difference, especially when all three of them are boys.

This month, the girls got to go out while the boys stayed home and watched Elizabeth.  I had found a couple of stables outside Tashkent that had trail riding out in the surrounding fields, so we decided to go and try one, Конный Дворик, out.  Even though we ride twice a week in town, it's always in a ring, so we thought it would be fun to get out and see some pretty scenery while having a chance to do some fast riding.

We were able to find the place pretty easily, and the the setup was quite scenic, with a nice courtyard with a rose garden and pleasant seating to have lunch afterwards.  The horses looked well cared for and happy, and after a few minutes of meeting the horses, we headed out.  

Fall is settling in here, so the trees lining the field were turning lovely colors, and the weather was clear and sunny - a perfect fall day.  I always love getting out of Tashkent, so it was pleasant to be out in the fields.  The girls enjoyed clopping along and even got to get an invigorating canter in halfway through the ride.  Too quickly, the ride was over and we headed back to the stable.

While petting an amazingly fuzzy pony, we started chatting with an English speaking guide.  He introduced us to the owner and they invited us to come and watch them do some archery on horseback.  We all eagerly agreed, and were treated to a fun show of Central Asian mounted archery.  After they were done, our friend let everyone take a turn shooting, but not from horseback. 

We finished our afternoon with freshly-grilled shashlik, or shish-kebabs.  The stable dogs happily joined us for lunch as we watched a two year-old Fresian stallion being trained by another new friend we had made earlier that morning.  The girls all agreed that it had been a perfect afternoon, and I had to agree.  We're already looking forward to our next visit.

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