My lesson last Saturday was cancelled due to my instructor's horse-induced
trip to the emergency room Friday night. Nothing was broken after all.
I spent that Saturday morning cleaning sheaths instead, along with general
Because of *my* foot problem, I haven't been riding so yesterday I reminded
the Paint that he does have manners, some of them are even good manners.
This reminder occured: during grooming, during tacking. Then he walked up to
the ring peaceable as can be with some eyeballing of the propped-open gate
(new path to ring).
Once there, I did some ground work (=manners): backing, yield quarters,
yield shoulders, walk, halt. On to a bit of lunging, peacably, except when I
went up to change the line to reverse direction. Now spooking for cause is
understandable. Spooking for imaginary evils is verboten. Spooking IN MY
DIRECTION is unforgiveable regardless of cause. After a good bit more work
in hand, lunged.
Walk. Halt. Walk. Halt. Walk. Trot. Walk. Halt. Eventually it sinks in that
he's not in charge and he does all three gaits nicely. (He's always like
this when he's not been worked regular-like.) And all this took maybe 10
minutes. But no explosions, which has been a problem in the no-so-distant
Mount up. Back to who's in charge so immediately go into lateral work at
walk, shifting from shoulder to shoulder, leg yield, turns on haunches and
forehand, halt. Back. Figures at walk. Halt some more. Jaw flexions.
Somewhere in there, he really accepted that I won't take no guff from him
and settled down and worked. Nice balanced trot, soft transitions up and
I limp home. Posting, in particular, is not making my Achilles tendon happy.
So we have bad news, followed by good news, followed by a nice ride (I'm
finally accepting what it takes to handle this beast - so much less
*** to *people* that any other horse I've dealt with).
And then my sister calls - there's a *** mass found in her CAT scan (in
the continuing search for the source of her brachial plexus irritiation).
She just had an appendectomy - an unusual problem for a mid-fifites woman.
With all that bodes, I could use an easy horse, much like Corinne wants an
easy dog. I'm afraid the bad news may out-weigh the good news for a while.
Maybe it's a karmic balance and the scales are just evening out.
So enjoy your horses and puppies and family. There are no guarantees about