I've failed to write about my last two Tuesday Night Lesson Nights.
The first occurred the Tuesday after Lizard Run. I should have canceled, but I was stubborn having pre paid and not wanting to lose my money. My left ankle was on fire even with a brace I grabbed from the office. It still isn't 100% right to this day. Anyway...Leonard was still on stall rest trying to heal his leg wound so I asked EN if she had a spare lesson horse I could use. She did. It turned out to be Baretta - a black pony with a draft sized head.
|Seriously the largest head I’ve ever seen on a pony|
I wasn't thrilled to be honest. I really don't like riding ponies. Sacrilege I know. The cadence of their stride just doesn't suit me at all even though I do enjoy being so close to the ground. But it was what it was so I showed up, tacked up and tried to ride. It didn't go too well.
It turned out that Barretta requires all the leg you have plus ten times more. My legs were done from Lizard Run and I just didn't have a lot in the tank to get her to do much beyond plod along. Eventually EN gave me a set of spurs which helped but the entire lesson was just meh. We did a course of cross rails at the canter. She even yelled “go gallop!” at one point and I did. But. Eh. I didn’t get much out of the lesson to be honest. At this point in my life I don’t really feel the need to ride everything I can get my butt on. Nothing against the pony. She is teaching the kiddo to ride and he adores her. She just wasn’t a good fit for me and I left the lesson feeling like I didn't get much value for the money I spent.
|He looks way better on her|
The following week I wasn’t feeling it so when the kiddo’s Friday lesson got rained out I gave him my Tuesday time for his make up ride. I told him he rode Barretta way better than I did anyway. Which is true.
That takes us to this past week. Leonard was still on stall rest so I texted and asked EN if she had anyone else I could ride. She could tell I wasn’t feeling the pony vibes so offered up Murphy, a 6 yo kinda green QH gelding.
|I have a thing for chestnuts|
This lesson was a lot better. It takes me a while to trust a new to me horse and I think that frustrates EN a bit as she pushed me to do more and I really wasn't feeling it. He was tricky too in that he didn't want any contact at all - like none - but then when we would canter he didn't listen to the leg at all to down transition back to trot. I think that if I rode him a few more times I would end up getting along pretty well with him.
We started with a fun exercise as in the photo below. We used it as two separate lines making sure to hit the center of each pole as we went at the trot in a straight line. I completely messed it up the first time. My mind went "zig zag!" so we sorta drunkenly went down the line going a bit left then a bit right each time. That was not how it was supposed to be done. The next few times were a lot better as I picked my straight line and kept to it.
|Sometimes my brain makes me do dumb things|
We then moved on to doing three different cross rail courses. I was to trot all of it which is good and bad. I love trotting. I love trot jumps. It is my safe space. But I'm getting to a point where I need to start being forced back to canter or I fear I will never do it as my canter fence confidence is dropping by the week.
Murphy was tricky here too as he likes to be very nappy when he decides the ride is done. He also likes to stop and poop before fences. The course was set as a typical outside line, diagonal, outside line, diagonal hunter course but with super tight turns. We reversed the order for the second course and then she did a handy course at the end. It was fun and we managed to get over everything even if it was a bit slow and stalled at times.
|I’d ride him again. With a few more rides I think we’d get along very well.|
By the end of the lesson I finally sorta figured it out. I enjoyed him a good bit. While he had his moments they were very similar to Hamilton's version of being nappy only way more mild so I had his number there. Thankfully though Lenny is able to return to work, so I can have my big grey goof back to work with. I really, really, really missed riding him.