Saturday, February 2, 2013

Our horses are smarter than us.

I know I wrote that I wouldn't know when I would get out next because of the weather, but the weather was all, "Let's be friends!" Thursday. Sure, it was chilly and still wet from all the melted snow and the downpour from Wednesday, and the wind was gusting at 40mph (legit wind advisory), but there was SUN!!! Sunnnnnnn!!!! Damn right we'll be friends, weather.

There was an apparently impromptu lesson going on in the indoor and I really wanted to do more than avoid people for once, so I threw on Bobby's jump tack and slopped through the mud up to the outdoor. It was sloppy, but totally rideable. I rolled two ground poles together in the middle of the arena to work over. I really wanted to set up an X, but sinking up to my ankles convinced me the footing wasn't that good.

not even close to representing the slop.
also, we lost a bell boot.
Bobby was a super star. I don't know if it's that he just finished up his ulcer treatment (which did wonders for his weight and general pissy attitude about touching him anywhere near his belly), or if he's left his Terrible Sevens and his brain has clicked over to Work Horse Magee, but he has been so focused and.... pleasant to work with. He didn't get turned out because of the ice (and he's used to 17 hours of turnout a day), the spreader was running in the field next to the arena, the tarp was whipping around by the gate like a horse-eating blue flag, and horses were racing each other. He didn't glance at anything. "Time to work? Oh, okay. Move faster than a snail? Oh, I guess."

We had a really nice w/t/c, collecting and lengthening his canter from half seat. Sane, happy work over the poles. Some no stirrup work. Leg yields. Nothing ground breaking, but all easy peasy. Well, easy peasy on Bobby's part. Holy shit, do I lose fitness fast. Too much time in my dressage saddle has made my calves feel very, very sad doing two point. Very. Fucking. Sad. I feel a trail ride in two point coming on.

giant dopey donkey head.

Today I read two blog posts when I came home from the barn. One from Savvy's mom, one from Shyloh's mom. I point these out because they both carry the same message: I underestimate how awesome my horse has become, and how much of a bad ass she is. I was like, "Dudes! You don't say. I was just telling Hubby the same thing!" Only I wasn't because I was just reading a blog, but I'm saying it now, Savvy and Shyloh's moms.

I wanted to set up a couple of jumps in the outdoor today, but when I went up there, the ground was literally cement. Something about wet stone dust freezing? Who knew? So I very begrudgingly went down to the indoor where there were some trot poles and two lines of jumps set up. Bobby warmed up a little sloth-like, but I had my spurs on and he eventually went to work.

As we were cantering along, I got ballsy (and bored) (and mad I wasn't in the outdoor) and went over the tiny X while on a circle. Bobby went over it in stride, landed on the correct lead, and carried on like it hadn't even happened. We switched directions and went over a little vertical the same way. Uh, what?



Hubby was like, "Is everything going okay?" with a look like, "Are you about to have another crazy person melt down?" Fair enough, Hubby. Fair enough.

Basically, what it comes down to is that I'm trying to be a little more Zen in my approach to Bobby, and a little smarter. Since he's such a dope, and so slow in general, I just expect him to lope around a stadium course like a hunter. Well, he's not a hunter. He's actually a very similar ride in stadium to Red. Give him his head, if he rushes, he rushes, and move on to the next. No picking at his face, no hauling on his mouth, no running him into the jump. While Red didn't always find his own perfect distance, he was the tidiest jumper I've ever sat on. I think Bobby, while a giant awkward doofus, can be the same way. He doesn't like to hit the rails, and he goes out of his way to get us over without touching anything.

That was a very long, rambling way of agreeing with Savvy and Shyloh's moms. My horse is awesome. My horse has confidence in himself. I need to have confidence in my horse because he is awesome.

favorite face rubs.
A trail ride is on the docket for tomorrow first thing in the morning so I can come home and park myself in front of the t.v. and drool over Joe Flacco all day. Football? There's a football in this game? Hmm....

9 comments:

  1. I personally have never understood the attraction to a game that (from my perspective) largely involves people standing around and commercials. The football-inclined friends that I mentioned it to discounted my theory, but according to the Wall Street Journal article a friend of mine directed me to the average 3 hour football game contains a total of 11 minutes of play.... in a 180minute game.

    Anywho, glad to hear Bobby's doing so well. He looks adorable as ever :)

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    1. I'm not going to lie--I love seeing people get leveled. But I do spend most of a game wandering in and out of the room. I don't think I miss much.

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  2. I used to play football and loved playing it but gave it up to ride in stead! Glad that you feel that Bobby is going well he is totally awesome!

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  3. I'm glad the ulcer treatment cleared up his tummy issues! Sucks about your bell boot getting sucked off lol!!

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  4. Glad the Ulcer treatment helped. Bummer about the bell boot... I am almost certain Hue would have to be in quicksand for his to even think about being pulled off - those bad boys have had to be cut off before because of his saucer feet... Yay for realizing your horse is awesome. I have had some of these moments lately too.

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  5. Love watching the helmet cam!

    Yes your horse is awesome.. and he is lucky to have you!

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  6. A very important message we must all remember! Our ponies are awesome!!

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  7. Glad others can relate! It is sometimes hard to see them for who they are now. Even tho Savvy is a hunter I know what you mean about how to best treat a jump course. Being picky and over controlling really backfires with Savvy and I struggle to just let her go (she isn't going to take off and who cares if she rushes a bit, she will back off with just a couple if schools). Again, I think it has to do with trust...at least for me.

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  8. I went to a show yesterday and found out the same thing. My horse is awesome :-).
    Yay for a helmet cam video.

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