Two of the rated (Recognized? What do you people call your sanctioned shows?) shows I' doing are going to be at this facility, so it was a great opportunity to get down there and scope things out while also clocking some volunteer hours. The weather was perfect, the people were great, and the college team did a really fun quadrille performance to break up the monotony of a whole lot of lower level dressage tests.
On Sunday I finally got back in the saddle for the first time since Wednesday--BM did her training ride through a very tricksy grid on Thursday that Bobby positively rocked--and did a little dressaging of my own.
We started off in the outdoor, and Bobby was feeling very agreeable. His walk and trot work were exactly where they needed to be, but right when I went to pick up the canter, trying hard to avoid puddles (Will it EVER stop raining?!) and jump standards, another rider walked in and Bobby broke to the trot in astonishment at the appearance of a horse.
|"zomg, never seen horses before!"|
I booted him forward, but he just tripped and almost fell on his face so I brought him back to the walk. He was surprisingly unfazed by this and his walk was really nice...until a person sat at the picnic table. Never seen a person before!!
Knowing there was at least one more rider coming out, and with how limited the space already was with jumps set out, I opted to bow out and move to the indoor. Again, Bobby did not care! He went right back to work, and I was able to school him through everything I wanted with zero issues. It's so nice when your horse is being agreeable; I almost forgot what it felt like!
|bobby psa: trying to yawn in a micklem is impossible.|
As I was getting my dressage gear around this morning, BM swung into the tack room to talk about the show the barn is going to Sunday. I was like, "Wait. That's this weekend?!" Dudes, how the fuck is show season suddenly upon us? I feel like we were just riding the struggle bus while it snowed outside a couple weeks ago.
Oh, wait. We were. But that's just because we live in the WORST STATE EVER.
So long as it doesn't rain, Bobby and I will be heading around the corner to participate for funsies, then our Second level debut is next weekend, followed by our first rated show the weekend after that, and then another rated show after that. Then break time and hunter pace time provided I haven't eaten all my funds using up that much gas. Fingers crossed, right? Blog fodder for
|"ok, but when is it snack time?"|
Anyway, back to my ride this morning. I'd gotten my dressage shit around, but as I was grooming Bobby, he was in such a pissy bitch mood that I felt like I was asking for a fight if I went that route. Instead I swapped things out for the jump tack and walked around outside on the soaking wet trails for fifteen minutes first.
Bobby was Mr Periscoping Dinosaur Head the whole time when left to his own devices, but if I asked he'd come right down and walk on the bit. Sadly my original plan of getting him out there for a bit of a romp was foiled by shitty footing, but I was able to pop him over two little log jumps in a different field which he was very polite for and came away feeling very pleased with himself.
We wandered into the indoor since BM was dragging the outdoor when we got back and worked on some hunter style flat work just in case for this weekend (!!). Mainly go long and low and forward without motorcycling around the turns because flat work isn't as easy in a jump saddle. Then we popped over the X and the gate topped with a rail that were already set up, both of which were fab.
|i will never run out of stupid pictures of my horse.|
You guys, Bobby is like butter to jump now. He's almost too adjustable and listening too well. Any little squeeze of your finger or sinking of your seat and he's coming right back up to you. I have to stop being such a chicken and let him go forward because I'm so bad about micromanaging, that if he messes up it's one hundred percent on me now. "But you said to whoa and add in ten more strides, lady. I'll whoa all day long." Only he also goes forward when you close your leg, and he just calmly jumps from wherever you tell him to now. Such magic. BM really is the Bobby Whisperer.
I figured all that was enough to take his mind off Bobby Problems so after a walk break, I dropped my stirrups and did a little dressage school after all. Shoulder-in, haunches-in, leg yields, rein back, canter-walk-canter transitions, all super round and relaxed. I wrapped that up quickly and gave him the rest of the candy in my pocket.
It's funny that the closer to shows I get, the more relaxed I become in my preparations. I know the horse is solid in this stuff, and while I'm going to keep working on polishing all the movements, at this point I feel like if we don't know it, we don't know it. Of course that just pertains to everything covered under First and Second. After this block of shows, I'm going to start back on the