Monday, April 11, 2011
It was a long week for me last week. Our office finally moved upstairs to the third floor. And although the new office space is nice and new, the actual move was horrendous. Add in the fact that I have come down with a bad cold, well I was pretty miserable. I did actually consider staying home from the barn Saturday morning, but well I just can't stay away. I rolled up to the barn about 9:00, just as Bonnie was finishing up with feeding. Someone was possibly coming to look at Naughtie, so I pulled her out of her stall to clean her up a bit. Katie had given her a bath a couple days before, so she was relatively clean, she just needed a bit of grooming. Well no one showed up to look at her so Bonnie had me tack up and ride with Rachel. What a great ride we had. She actually hasn't been ridden since sometime last fall, but Bonnie was the last one on her so really couldn't tell that she had so much time off. Naughtie was ready to get back to work and happily moved out into a forward, marching walk once I was in the saddle. She was soft in my hands and very responsive to my legs. After lots of circles of various sizes at the walk, we moved into an impulsive trot. A little warm up at the trot and it was time to shorten our stirrups to jump. Bonnie had set up a low cross bar in the center of the arena and we popped over that several times before she had us jump another cross bar that was set up to the right at a slight angle. The trick though was to trot through the other jump standards only making the right turn about a stride before the fence. We did that a bit and then Bonnie added another fence in front of the first fence in the center of the ring as a one stride combination. We jumped that a few times and then jumped the first fence and turned to jump the angled fence. First time through doing that wasn't very pretty. I actually didn't make the angled fence as I was waiting too long to turn Naughtie. Thankfully she is very athletic and managed to jump over the center fence even though she wasn't at all straight for it. It took us a couple of tries but we managed to get the idea. Then Bonnie added a third fence to the middle so that we had a bounce to a one stride. Jumped that a few times and then Bonnie set up another angled fence on the left side of the center line. This one she put back a bit further, giving us a little more room to make the turn after the bounce. Then we started alternating, first jump the bounces turn to the left then loop around and jump the bounces and turn to the right. Finally we ended on a small course; straight through the center, bounces to the left, bounces to the right and finally finish through the middle. It was a fun lesson, and even though we only jumped small fences it was something new to Naughtie.
After I finished with Naughtie, I gave her a quick bath and then tacked up Fanny-girl. Fanny was a super little pony. headed right to work on the rail with minimal screwing around. I did have to get after her a bit once when she kept giving the roundbale the stink eye. After that she was as good as gold. We warmed up at the walk and trot and then Bonnie had us go down on the circle and try the canter on both leads. The goal was to try and slow her canter down to an acceptable western pleasure pace. Much easier on the right lead than the left. But the left is her harder side as she does have a bit of a stifle issue there. we don't usually canter her too much on the left lead, definitely not as comfortable for her as the right lead. Then it was time to jump. We started out over the single fence in the center and then added the second fence to make the one stride in and out. And then finally we added the two angled fences. Fanny was having so much fun! She's really enjoying herself with getting to play with the big kids. And she much happier then when the little kids get on for their lessons.
Ari had tacked up His Poniness for a lesson and she rode him on the flat in the same group as Fanny and I. She's doing a really good job with him. He's looking very happy with her riding, the same cannot be said for some who have been on him in the past, so that's important to me. And she's having fun. At first they were going to have a lunge lesson, but then Ari just sort of worked into the group and rode him on the rail. But she still worked on things like riding without stirrups and posting without stirrups. Heather came to pick Ari up before she had a chance to put X away. And so rather than immediately untack him I decided to hop up for a little. We didn't do too much, just trotted a little bit and then picked up the canter. He's still tossing his head at the canter which I don't like, but overall he wasn't too bad considering he really hasn't be worked other than on the lunge in a while. I had planned to ride him a little longer, but then Miss decided to escape from her stall and come running out to the arena. I guess she had enough of waiting around for me to get to her and took things into her own, well hooves. So I put X away and tacked up the Moose.
Miss just got some flatwork, a lot of walk and flexing and then some trot work too. By that point I didn't really have time for too much else. But Miss was breathing a little heavy, kinda rumbly, so it was probably a good things that we didn't do too much. She gave me some good moments at the trot though. And then we just had some fun walking around and playing a bit.
Good day at the barn, although I think I overdid it a bit seeing as I was coming down with a cold. So I was pretty miserable at work that evening. At least I only had to work till 10:00 rather than midnight. I'm taking Wednesday off for my appointment with Dr. Connelly, but that's not till the afternoon so I should get a chance to go ride in the morning.
Still have some super secret Rolex news to share soon. And another post that I'm really not looking forward to writing. I seem to be doing too many of these suddenly...