10 July 2008

I am not kidding about the dirt.

Dirt night takes on a whole new level of dirt in the summer.

On hot days, I spend all day at work sweating, and getting coated with layers of dust and dirt. It goes along with the job. On Wednesday nights though, I run straight over to another barn to teach agility class then run my dogs once it's dark and cool at the end of the night. So this barn is a dressage barn. The dressage people, they see dirt different than us hunter people do. Instead of good old fashioned water to keep their dust down in their arena, they use this Stuff.

The Stuff gets sprayed down over the arenas and the dirt road. I guess it's a polymer, it feels like oil. Like salad dressing, is a good way to think about it. Spray down salad dressing over your black dirt that already has nice black and oily tire particles in it. The dressage people, they don't have to walk around in it setting jumps, they just sit up on the deck to teach their lessons and for the most part don't have to walk in the dirt. Must scrub the heck out of their horses' legs every day. So don't have to deal with sprinklers and water all summer because of the miracle Stuff.

So when us dog people show up on Wednesday, first thing we have to drag the stuff out of the trailer and set up in the dirt. I teach class in the dirt. Beginners have dropped out because of the dirt, now salad dressing coated black tire dirt. We're used to it now, just slog through it, clumping on boots and coating pants legs. White legged dogs? Black by the end of their class.

Last night, it was muggy. We don't really have muggy as a season usually. Was kind of muggy all day. Ran my dogs at the beach on the way to work, in the muggy. Got nice and sweaty before work. Rode too many horses at work in the muggy and dragged too many jumps around in the muggy and got nice and sweaty and coated with dirt layer number one. Regular dirt though. Went to agility in the muggy and did the fun begin. By the time I was ready to run my dogs and Hobbes, you could barely see who I was through the dirt coat. All clothing now dirt colored. Ran 3 dogs on a bunch of runs, they were all nice and fast so I was running nice and fast in the muggy and sweating up a storm. Getting coated with more and more dirt by the minute. Every inch of skin somehow now coated, every inch of clothing sticking and dirt coated.

Topped off the evening by tearing down the course and dragging the black salad dressing tire dirt coated equipment back into the trailer in the nice muggy evening, now turning foggy so a cooling version of muggy. You've torn down a course. You've made salad. Imagine tearing down the course inside a salad bowl which is black ooze while you're standing in the black ooze and dragging your heavy stuff through the black ooze.

Salad dressing coated dirt stays nice and oily like this for months. Gustavo ran around in it for a few minutes between classes, ran a few steps, clumps attached to him like velcro within seconds, he has some nice dirt attracting fur apparently. Doesn't clump up on the other dogs. He's so little and the dirt oh so close. Sort of what happens to him in burrs and stickers. He kind of ran, clumped, sat down, declumped, ran, clumped, like that.

We all drive home like that. Dirty and clumpy and it's dark so you can't see. Considered taking off dirty sweaty work ensemble in car to drive in underwear then can't bear the pain of this thought. All options equally bad. Walk in the back door and black, oily footprints immediately dancing everywhere on the laundry room floor where I don't even care because all I can do is tear off the dirt clothes and consider burning them then just try to forget about it until next Wednesday night.


Anonymous said...

I don't know why I wore light colored shorts. At least the salad dressing comes out!
Hey, Project Runway is coming! How will you make it home in time?

Double S said...


It's good you don't cook-- I'm not sure I'd want to try your "special" salad dressing (g).

Yeah, us dressage types, well, we don't like to touch the dirt. We're kinda wussy, not like you hunter/jumpery folk. There's a reason we're called Dressage Queens, you know ;-)

OBay Shelties said...

We also train and trial in alot of horse arenas. The variety of surface is amazing. The worst is at one arena where this oily black rubber with dust that sticks to the sheltie fur for days! You cannot wash it out or even brush it out; it refuses to budge. You need to wait until it falls out and that usually means there is a black ring on the ground wherever the dog is sleeping that night. I don't train there anymore! :-)
What we do in the name of dog agility huh?
Bernadette and the OBay Shelties