Well, it's been another couple of weeks with very little riding. The 23rd winter of the year hit us, with cold temperatures, and a dump of snow (my yard was almost clear of snow, but not now).
Cisco got ridden once this past week. When talking to people before my ride, I had said that I expected it to be a fun ride - as in, hang on, because it's going to get interesting.
I was right. Fresh Cisco meant extra spooky Cisco. Which wasn't helped at all by someone trying to do some repairs on the quad that is used to harrow the arena and is parked in the scary end. Well, not repairs at this point - more like diagnostics that required revving the engine and turning it off and on multi times.
Sucks to be Cisco. I made him deal with it.
He's honestly getting much better about his emotions in the scary end of the arena. He might turn into a llama between K and H, and he might suck back and drop a shoulder if I soften for a millisecond, but he's getting much better about going down there and not actually losing his brain. In the end, we did a bunch of smaller canter circles down there, and if I set him up properly (which meant unlocking his neck before asking for the canter) he gave me some nice moments.
And then we got a dump of snow, the farrier was out for their trim, there was a clinic on and the arena was closed..... and no more rides for the week.
Thus, it's been quiet on the horse side of things.
The non-horse side of things has been a bit exciting though - I bought a new
mobile tack room car!
I had a bunch of problems with my 10-year-old Santa Fe in January that got me looking in a panic at my options should I need to replace it. As much as I've loved driving that SUV, I've been thinking for a few years about finding something that was much better on fuel. My driving had changed since I had bought it and I've always hated having to pay for gas.
I ended up talking with a barnmate about her hybrid car, and was shocked to discover just how good it was on gas. She regularly gets 1000 km on her 43 liter tank of gas. I got 525 km on my 60 liter tank in my SUV, that I had to fill up every 6-7 days. That got me really thinking about my options.
Originally, I was thinking that I would put down a deposit and order one, knowing that with the current inventory issues I wouldn't necessarily be able to just walk into a dealer when I decided that it was time and be able to drive a new car away. I talked with one dealer, who said that it would be at least a 6-month wait, and in fact, I would be put on a waitlist for the waitlist for a 2023 model, as the new models haven't even been announced yet, but the 2022 models were basically sold out.There were only a handful of the current models available around the city.
I also was pondering the expectation that gas prices were going to hit record highs this summer, and that the interest rate would likely go up in March, and decided to just do it now before I got into a situation where I needed to replace my car on short notice and would likely have a hard time getting what I wanted.
So I got me a 2022 Hyundai Ioniq PHEV (plug-in hybrid). And so far I'm loving it!
|It won't be this clean again for a long while.|
It has a small battery that I can plug into my regular outlets in my garage and it charges up overnight to give me about 47 km of electric range. When it reaches 15% remaining in the battery while driving it switches over to hybrid mode. It will still try its best to run on electric while in hybrid mode, depending on what it deems best (ie. on the highway it will likely be using the ICE (internal combustion engine) but in the city it will probably be using electric).
In the 10 or so days since I picked it up I've driven about 670 km - a little less than typical due to the cold and snow. The range left on my initial tank of gas is still 579 km. That's a minimum of 1300 km from a 43 liter tank of gas - and in the end it will be much better as I charge it every night and get another 47 km of range added every day. I'm hoping for at least 1500 km or about 3 weeks before needing to fuel up, but I suspect it will actually be more like 1700 to 2000 km and closer to 4 weeks - maybe a bit more.
Sadly, I won't be saving the money I'm not spending on gas - it will all be going back into the car payments I now have. But between the gas money and the lessons that I've started teaching again I think I'll get to eat something other than Ramen noodles at least a couple of times a week. The horses better not get any ideas though....