|that swag tho|
I woke up that morning to sunshine, and I couldn't believe they were still calling for storms. I stalked the radar over Buffalo all morning, and instead of blowing off, the storms kept blowing up. It looked like they were finally going to clear out over the show grounds right when my first test was going to start, but the storms were travelling in a direct line over the interstate into Rochester which meant I would be driving the entire time under severe thunderstorm warnings. Not fun, especially when the running lights on my trailer don't like working on a good day.
It worked out for the best anyway, as I was talking to a girl who did end up going for an earlier ride time who said that it was wet and sloppy, the ring they got moved into wasn't standard size, her trailer had to get pulled out with a tractor, and driving down 90 was awful.
Plus I ended up riding my horse at home anyway and he was quite the little shit.
|wow so pretty but so bad|
We're going through another cycle of "This is hard, I don't wanna." We hit this is in the spring as well, when I really ramped up the show prep to come out at First. It wasn't new information, I was just asking for it to be cleaner and bigger. Now that we're gearing up for Second, it's the same thing. He already knows how to do all the things, but I want the things to be better.
That's hard. It means he has to sit more, and be steadier in the contact, and we don't quit until he softens over his back. On Saturday that meant riding through three lessons until I got what I was looking for. There was much rearing, a heavy side of spinning, and a few bolts thrown in for good measure. #ZenNinja sat there and didn't change the rein length, didn't take my leg off, didn't stop asking for more forward.
Finally, FINALLY, Opie figured out there was no evasion he could try that could make any of that go away and melted into my hands. We floated down the long side, I halted him, and then immediately got off and shoved candy in his face.
Stepping under yourself without inverting is really the worst thing in the whole wide universe, guys. The. Fucking. Worst.
The one good thing about all the storms was it blew the suffocating humidity out of the air and we had the best weather for the barn's hunter pace the next day. I threw a borrowed jump saddle on Opie in bout thirty seconds to sub in for a girl that got hurt right before she was about to get on, and had the best time with my partner.
|good old oz took opie on many of his first trail rides|
Opie started out popping over everything right out of stride, being super soft and smart. Then his partner went behind a bush and Opie thought the Horse Black Hole Vortex had swallowed Oz and he lost his shit. Nevermind that Oz reappeared in all of fifteen seconds. He had a few jumps of landing and trying to bolt back towards the barn, but we had a little timeout and he went back to being perfect.
|throwback to trying to exit because all alone|
He jumped pretty much everything on the property, and only had a few of his hysterical, "Wow, what are legs!!!" jump forms where he twists the front half one direction and then lands by twisting the back half in the other direction. Grids would for sure fix that, or just teaching him to jump in general, but LOLZ, who has time for that?
|"it's okay, i'll get us over somehow!"|
|"not sure what to do with these legs, so i'll just throw them over here!"|
I had Oz lead us over the big 3' log stack since it was his first time jumping it. Opie cleared it by five feet and I was sooo proud of him for getting his legs out of the way. Only then he thought the fun game was chasing Oz over jumps and almost plowed through the next one when he barely lifted his legs at all because he was too busy galloping after Oz. So no more leads over jumps after that.
He got a quick break in his stall to pee and grab a drink, then went right back out to escort my favorite tiny barn child around. Her Haffie was being a sass machine, so he got shoved up Opie's bum the entire ride to slow his roll.
Opie might have Opinions about doing the work, but he is A Very Good Boy most of the time. He went from romping around jumping things with his giant OTTB friend, to jogging on a floppy rein with a pony attached to his hind end. Plus he got our tiny partner another blue ribbon, and we ended up with a second for our round.
He gets the next four days off while I