There is a joke that says that there is only one thing two horse “experts” can agree on (and expert is used very loosely here) and that is that the third horse expert is wrong.
We can agree on breed but disagree on discipline, or we can disagree on discipline but agree on colour or disagree on colour but agree on tack. We can disagree about just about every manner of husbandry, training or any other thing remotely connected to our beloved equines.
There is one thing, however, that we can probably all agree on. What goes in one end, must come out the other end. Our gorgeous, powerful, dainty, impressive, cute, old, young, tired, playful, strong, timid, fearless equines are all, without exception, perfect machines for turning green stuff into brown stuff. And that means someone has to clear it up, and it is never them.
That is why they have us a body slaves.
More than you need to know? Why am I telling you this?
You can treat it as a mindless task. A mechanical picking up and clearing up whilst your mind wanders off to think about the argument you had with you boss this morning, or how you can attract the attention of the cute bloke at the feed store. There are a multitudes of tasks like this that we do in a day; and so the day slips past, half unnoticed and we wonder where all the time has fled. So I have started applying a form of mindfulness to “poo patrol”. It has its practical side of course, you can tell a lot about the health of your charges by considering their poo. Does it look different today? How many little piles and so on. That is not what I mean however. I mean being fully vested in the process and aware of my surroundings . Instead of think about the emails still to attend to,the bills to pay, the shopping list I keep my attention on the sun on my back, the feel of bending and straightening and lifting and tipping. Of the sounds of the birds, a car in the distance, even the faint sound of a train.
Surprisingly having my attention on the now of what I am doing seems to make the job go faster but the time is not lost, instead it expands. I can move on to those other tasks without the tail chasing feeling of never catching up because I have experienced every moment as it occurs.
And of course it can be applied to everything we do, not just picking up poo. Living life to the fullest does not have to mean a bottomless pocket and a candle that burns at both end as you grasp at more and more experiences, but rather getting more and more out of each experience you have by being present to it.