Don’t shy away: Dressage lesson!

Man, I haven’t had a good dressage lesson in…2 months? Soo many things came up, unfortunately.

Nov we had extreme flooding, so had to wait for the roads/arena to dry up, and there was a gasoline shortage too. Fun!

So naturally I had to get video. Still wish I’d gotten it from the right, it was a touch nicer.

Dec we had abscesses for weeks (not so fun), snowstorms, holidays. Boy that really adds up! We also had extreme cold- a week and a half of -9 so people had frozen pipes, frozen/black ice on roads and a ton of snow. Needless to say, not a productive month.

Jan my trainer got COVID so we had to wait until she was feeling better, and now she is! Yay!

And I was thrilled with how lovely Oats was feeling. Man this guy- 20 years old and he blows me away with how lovely and accepting he was in my lesson. We worked on a little pole circuit, and to the right he was foot-perfect. To the left, we started off really well but managed to kind of blow it to the pink poles. SIGH. Something to work on, as I know going left causes my body to twist in ways I don’t really want, lol. Oh well, guess it can’t be totally perfect, can it?? It was close!

Good boy Oaty, I love you!

Time owes you nothing

And enough with the running, how is the riding? Pretty darn good! I know my dressage these days is…Not great (that’s what happens when I do it unsupervised, it kind of sucks, ha) but each ride I come off my pony thinking, I’m so lucky to have such a great schoolmaster! 

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Oats in his other job- carting my husband back to the barn. 

And isn’t that what it’s all about? Being happy with what you have, the horse you have in this moment of time? Even when it is distinctly non-glamorous work (walk- canter departs yesterday, I have to limit how many I do because it is tiring for Oats).

Yesterday Oats even had a chance to play school pony, for my friend’s adult niece. The young lady had a ride on my friend’s horse and he acted kind of out of character and freaked the niece right out! I was very surprised, this is a horse that I have literally gotten on and like, whaled on him to get him to go! And he’s spooky and acting silly with a beginner rider? Wha?

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Such a good boy 🙂

So I offered up good old Mr. Oats for a pony ride! We felt it was important that she have a good experience with a horse, and I offered that Oats is smaller, closer to the ground too 😉 Ian said why would you say that (hahhh) but it makes people feel safer!

So we got her up on Oats, and I just held him still. She teared up! But I said look, it’s ok. He’s not going anywhere. He stood still for a bit, and then we walked around and everything went totally fine 🙂 I said- you’re in charge of the ride, you tell me when you want me to stop. And everything went fine, and no fuss or drama. Yay! What a good boy.

It just gladdens my heart to see him being such a solid little guy. Not only am I enjoying my rides, but others can too.

And on Saturday I worked on the most boring of things, but it seemed to be a little rusty…halt-trot transitions. Yay?? Ha. Oh well! Such is the tedium of the day-to-day eh?

Pure Joy

I had a ride last night, and I still have a freaking cold, and was feeling suuuper tired and draggy. It’s been chilly here (for us!) close to -1 in the evenings which is quite unusual so I was feeling blah, crabby and cold, coughing and snotty, gross and out of it.

Because it wasn’t a lesson, I dragged out some poles to work on my position in two-point over, and work on my eye. Oats and I warmed up and he was good, quite good. Listening, interested, sparkly.

We went up to canter, and this is where the ‘pure joy’ moment was…We cruised over and over the poles, and he was SO SMOOTH…I loved it. I could go like that forever. I tried staying up in two-point- my default right now is to sit and push with my seat- and we cruised, and cruised, and cruised.

I felt so happy, so alive.  Even though it’s just poles (yawn), I was just so glad about how cool, smooth and cooperative Oats was.

Of course, because I’m being me, I didn’t leave it at that but that is the memory I am left with from the ride- just cruising along, not a care in the world. Now THAT is what riding should be!

We have a lesson tonight – I’m still feeling pretty lousy from the cold I have that seems to be lingering unpleasantly, and I had some very disturbing post-apocalyptic nightmares again (why???) so yeah still kind of draggy, but we’ll see!

Old photo of Oats

Old photo of Oats