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Desk to Derby | July 20, 2015
by Liz Brown
The last two weeks have zoomed past and today I realize that in seven days I leave for Mongolia. It’s a bit surreal that my departure is so close now, having spent the last 11 months completely focused on this one goal.
This past week I met another Derby rider – Michelle Tanaka – who drove nine hours from Arizona to come ride with me in Moab. On the first day of her stay, she got kitted out in her Derby gear (giant helmet visor, camelback, and photographer vest OVER the camelback) and hopped aboard a green broke Arabian named Ozi that Meryl and I have been training. Ozi was a bit freaked out, having never encountered a rider resembling the hunchback of Notre Dame and proceeded to scoot and canter laps in the round pen as Michelle tried to calm him.After only a few minutes she said she was ready to hit the trail.
This girl is a lot braver than I, who bailed from Ozi just a week earlier when he did a big spook and bolt at a man in the neighbourhood who was pushing a bucket and pulling weeds from his driveway.
Her gear preparation is also well ahead of mine. She can pack her saddlebag in seven minutes and seems to have prepared for every eventuality...
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