Not much time to write too much, even though I can't stop grinning from ear to ear. So here's the quick skinny. I had not been to the barn since Monday due to work stuff. We unveiled a new online store and everything went as wrong as wrong could be. The usual computer mess. So the pony had not been worked for three days.
It was sunny. Finally. It's been way too long. I needed the sun.
So I get to the barn and throw the pony in the arena. Snort, blow, gallop. At one point, she is trying to do her OCD thing and only run the ten feet between the door and the corner and I step in her way. There was a definite "Oh crap" moment on her part, where she realized she was going to run me down if something didn't change. I raised my arms (one conveniently holding a lunge whip) and Tess tried to do an about face. Only it came out more of a face-plant. She tried to turn around but she was going so fast that her legs got all tangled up and she fell. Then she tried to get up as fast as she could and sort of half fell again. Then she snorted and spun around and ran the other way, checking in to make sure I hadn't moved again.
She was puffing pretty hard even though she hadn't done *that* much running. Probably a combination of scaring herself and working hard with her winter woolies still on. Into the cross ties for a quick grooming session. Five minutes later and I was wearing a sweater of white horse hair. Glance at my watch. Crap, my lesson starts in two minutes.
She's still got big nostrils and is huffing a bit. I saddle up and get to the arena. Here's where it gets magical folks. I did not lunge. Yes, it's true. My pony had three days off and I just let her blow a little steam off in the arena and then got on and rode her. Hell yes, I'm brave like that. A few times, Laura had to remind me to stop getting in my head and saying "Maybe you should have lunged her!".
We had a few spooks (sunshine creates shadows and in case you didn't know this, those shadows are horse eating shadows) and one time where she went left and I was still riding a circle to the right, but I somehow managed to adjust accordingly.
The lesson was spent working on trot, canter, change direction. Forward, forward. Using what Linda showed me last week about trotting tiny circles while reinforcing my leg, we got the most forward trot. And then there were moments where her back lifted and her head dropped. There were also a few kicks out and a buck, but they were in the middle of going forward.
What's up Mona Sterling? Who's that MoFo riding large and in charge? Yeah, bitches, it's me. Mona Effing Sterling. Am I kind of pumped up and sassy right now? Oh, you better believe it. 'Cause I rode that pony without lungeing and I rode her forward and when she argued, I said "Oh no you did NOT" and we got down to business.
Coming in April --- my quest to ride in the ENTIRE arena, not just 3/4 of it. Also in April....back feet. I'm tired of avoiding them. It's time to conquer the back feet.
|Shaggy, wet pony. I hosed her off she was so sweaty!|
|Grass! Sunshine! Is it spring?!|
|Hairy girth. Seriously hairy.|