Monday, August 26, 2013
Turns out tomorrow was another day. Alex and I went back to work on Thursday. It was another stormy afternoon, but at least this time there wasn't as much wind and the temperature hadn't dropped. After working on the lunge, I climbed into the saddle ready to rock. Fortunately, although Alex was more tense than usual, there was no bucking and only a few head tosses. I wasn't elated with the ride but I was satisfied.
Friday night was a quiet one at the farm, for which I was grateful after two stormy nights. I decided it was time to put on my "big girl breeches" and ride in spurs. Alex did remarkably well with the spurs, although I think he was a little put out :-) Our actual ride was actually very good, he was much more forward with the spurs and I didn't have to work so hard to keep him forward which was great!
Our Saturday lunging session was a little wild, thanks to a horse running around in the paddock next to the arena, but fortunately that didn't transfer to our ride. Alex worked pretty well and even managed to do a few turns on the forehand (not the best ever, but good) and a satisfying way to end four days of riding.
Sunday Alex had the day off and had his fall vaccinations, so I just cleaned his stall, fed him treats and gave him kisses.
Tonight, I have to admit, that I was tired and not exactly enthused about riding, I tacked up and headed out to lunge Alex and found another person riding in the arena. After asking if it was ok to lunge in the arena while she rode (which it was) I started working Alex. He was surprisingly calm working on the lunge even with the other horse cantering around at the opposite end of the arena (this usually sets him off).
Right after I climbed in the saddle, the other horse came trotting by which of course meant that Alex felt the need to make a little leap and groan (he always groans, it's so funny!) setting the other horse off a bit (oops!). Tried this a few more times whenever we got close to the other horse, but eventually after being made to continue forward, he settled, and I was never at any time worried he'd do anything really bad which is fantastic! I hope I didn't bother the other girl too much. I'm really happy though because I so rarely get to ride with other people in the arena and it wasn't terrible! Even though we had a little change of game plan, I'm happy in my decision to start exposing him to more. It never hurts to ask if it's ok to ride with someone else, all they can do is say no, but if I don't start asking, Alex will never get over his tendency to get wound about other horses.
Despite our struggles, I really do love my horse. He's never going to be easy, but I do really think he's going to be spectacular. Just have to be confident, persistent and patient :-)