Saturday, October 22, 2016

Double or Nothing

I have spent most of this past week laying low.  I ended up developing what I am guessing is a sinus infection or a mild respiratory infection of some sort which peaked in actually calling into work on Wednesday, which is a rarity for me.  By Thursday, I was back at work, but still bushed.  Apparently not breathing does that.

But today is one of those lovely Midwestern autumn days.  Leaves falling, weather is pretty darn nice, and the blasted bugs are all but dead. 

So I decided to finally get my act together this afternoon and wandered out to the barn. 

I rode Chili first. The other horses were being turned out from the drylots onto grass, so they were quite boisterous and Chili was pretty convinced she was dying for a few minutes.  I decided to be on the safe side, so I tacked her up and long lined her to see if we had tiny squirrel brain or regular young horse brain on board, since it's been a week since I've ridden her.

She was actually fairly lazy in the lines, so I hopped on board. 

-Standing quietly for mounting as she usually likes to walk off
-Picked up both canter leads quietly from the trot without trying to run into it.  Bonus on the correct leads

-Decided to be a crab and balk and not want to work after I stopped and did some basic turns on the forehand and then asked her to go back into trotting.  Apparently I like to cool down a little too often doing TOF and sidepasses, so that I need to vary this a little.

We then wandered outside to enjoy the pretty weather.  She was a little forward and hot, but nothing too exciting.  It's been a couple weeks since she's had consistent exercise and the fall weather does liven them up at times.

I also decided to take my whip since I need some reinforcement when she decides to balk.  She's not a horse that takes happily to a major correction since she gets light on the forehand or likes to kick out, but just carrying the whip is usually enough incentive to keep moving if she gets stuck.

She was really quite good.  She hasn't had too much experience about traversing through all of the fallen leaves, so she was a little worried that the trees & landscape had changed from the typical route we take.  I am pretty sure that a bush could disappear and this horse has a mental map that would know exactly where that bush should have been.

The only hiccup was that there was gravel laid in the path where a rut had formed from a truck driving back there.  The gravel had changed the dark mud to obviously gravel colored and was accented by a couple of road cones.  I really have no idea why the road cones were there.

Chili was worried about this change and was stuck for a few minutes, but after some quiet patience, she moved along. Too much pressure causes her to get anxious and act out in some way, so my goal is to be the best wife ever and nag enough that she doesn't know she's being nagged.  That's my analogy and I'm sticking to it.

I finished up ruining Chili's evening by clipping that ridiculously long bridle path as seen above.  She's good for the bridle path, but why not finish the evening by working on clipping her ears.

Let's suffice it to say that having a root canal is more pleasant than clipping her ears.

But it's on the list of things to accomplish this year is being able to clip her ears without restraint.  We'll see.  I don't think she'll ever be "OK" with the process, but not using a twitch and/or drugs in high quantities would be great.  To be fair to Chili, she is getting better and we were working on just accepting the vibration and having her lower her head and lick and chew with my hand on her ear and the clipper next to it.

Small steps.

After finally letting the horse free on grass, I contemplated just going home to never move again.

So I decided to go and get Donni off the pasture instead. 

Donni hasn't been in much work and is more or less basically retired except when friends come to ride.  I am just starting to see if I can find a part leaser for her, since she's still sound and useful, but I just don't have the time and energy to keep two horses in solid work.

I didn't work her terribly long, but it is such a change from Chili.  Despite the fact that Donni is Chili's dam, they are quite different to ride in a lot of ways.  Donni is much more forward and about ten times as wide.  She's a lot more steady and easier to keep between the reins.  Donni probably has a better work ethic too, in the fact that she is always ready to keep going. 

But all in all, both girls were excellent, despite their time off. 

A great gamble for sure: double or nothing.
One of the barn owner's Fjords.  Beyond cute. 

1 comment:

  1. Fair play for doing so much with your gorgeous girls when you you self were not 100%
    I am so glad they were both so good, I still can never believe how grown up C is 😍😍😍


Please leave a comment if you like. I love hearing from readers and would like to know that I am not always talking to myself. ;)