The magic magic-ness that makes Bobby happy to flat around in circles.
In his hackamore and running martingale, we do a very exact warm up:
Walk on a loose rein with lots of changes of direction. Forward trot on a loose rein with lots of changes of direction, occasionally asking to actively stretch down instead of just stretch out. Walk on a loose rein. Canter in half seat three twenty meter circles, one full lap of the arena, and then a simple change of direction if going from left to right or a flying change if going right to left. Repeat canter figures in opposite direction. Back to walk, now working on connection and roundness. Introduce a little lateral work. Begin any and all badassery because now he's like buttah.
We finish our flat sessions by walking up the hill that borders the two front paddocks. It's a long hill with a good grade that really works the booty, and there's absolutely no gravel. It takes us about ten minutes to go up and back. Next week we'll start doing it twice in a row.
|and we get to visit ponies!|
|and play bobby's favorite game: "bite my face!"|
I had a fun time yesterday flatting around the indoor with K1 and her OTTB mare who also recently went barefoot, and then hacking up the hill with them afterwards. Her mare and Bobby are serious twinsies. Giant, bay, and really awkward looking with their size XL ears. They're also both totes chill and happily marched up the hill together on the buckle. Bobby was in love because Bobby loves the ladies.
Today I made my way over to the barn early without any serious game plan. I groomed Bobby and volunteered to longe Adorable Pony for his lesson kid. ZOMG, AP I need you. He's probably not going to stick around for much longer though. He's only three (or four?), still pretty green, and barely makes medium height so he's not very versatile for a lesson program like our barn.
Then I stuck around to watch the lesson which K2 rode Pilot in. I could go into an entire post about that situation--and go on and on and on--but let's keep barn drama in the barn where it belongs, right? Let's just say I'm really glad I stepped in and told her I'd clock her upside the head if she changed his bit to something bigger than the french link I set him up in, and I'm really glad BO is back to teaching lessons and was able to tactfully make the corrections I wanted to yell at her. Urgh.
An hour after I got there, Sarah pulled in and the lesson was almost over, so I went to finally get on my own horse. Sarah suggested the cross country field so we went up there and puttered around before going over the cherry log a few times. Bobby was a nutter. He left out an entire stride the first two times to launch himself over. I finally wrangled him back to a normal canter and got the correct distance, but that made him sassy, and he did a little crow hop and neck snake to show his displeasure.
We weren't up there for very long--but managed to do a few more jumps--and decided to end with a run up the hill. Sarah originally declined, but when do we ever do bad ideas on our own?
Then she was all, "I'm not going to let him run all out" (because he was being a nutter as well, as Blackberry is prone to be when faced with wide open spaces), but really? B was going to go when I let Bobby loose whether she liked it or not.
She had to stay right next to us since the far side of the hill was sloppy from not getting any sun to dry out the ground, and the ponies went flying. The sad part is, B had a little bit of a head start (being a Quarter Horse, he gets the jump easier than my gargantuan "I don't know where my legs are!" Thoroughbred), and while Bobby caught up to him, I smacked him twice on his shoulder causing him to accelerate both times, and he still lost by a head to a 22yo. Really, Bobby. It's no wonder you never broke your maiden.
Both boys were quite full of themselves afterwards, and it took me the full length of the top of the field to get Bobby pulled up to a canter. Yeah, forget the walk. He was in his hackamore and I obviously didn't want to pull on him, so I was left with my feet on the dash and pulling on his neck strap. I guess it was nice of him to respond to those things alone.
This post could keep going for another ten paragraphs, but I'll refrain. It's a fucking rambling novel as it is. I even rode another horse after all that, but I'll write another novel tomorrow. Maybe with better pictures?