Getting Ready to Go – Again!

I’m getting ready for a journey to another horse show.  This time just to watch.  I’m so lucky that Dean deals well with my obsessions; he hasn’t really complained once about me being out of town so much this summer (of course, I’m bribing him with a trip to Disney).

I am looking forward to attending my first state fair, as well.  Hopefully I’ll find some entertainment value in it, since I have a feeling I’ll be spending a lot of time there, since I won’t have a car.  I really hope that the hotel is within walking distance, as their website proclaims.  Otherwise, I’m pretty much screwed since the rest of the barn people aren’t arriving until Friday afternoon, and they are staying somewhere else.  I really want to watch the late night training sessions, but I don’t know yet how practical that is going to be. 

M called the lady that I bought Blondie from, and told her that Laurie and I are attending the horse show.  Laurie bought her pony from her.  She invited us to come to their stabling area and meet them!  I was excited about this when M told me, and after watching the live video feed from the show last night, now I’m really looking forward to it.  They had three beautiful First Night Out yearlings in the yearling class, and they finished 1, 3 & 5.  I liked Bingo Night the best (she finished 3rd), and hope I can see her in person on Friday. 

I’ll update as time permits.  Without a car to get back and forth to the hotel, I might only be able to post in the mornings, though.  We are supposed to go to the Louisville Zoo, and maybe squeeze a trip to Churchhill Downs.  Tomorrow there are a ton of classes during the day that I want to see at the horse show, so finding the time to do everything that I want is going to be tough.


 

Bad News From the Barn

I called M today to arrange a ticket swap with her.  I was afraid that if I didn’t get the horse show tickets to her before I left, it would be difficult getting together on Friday.  I don’t know when they are leaving for Louisville, and I didn’t want to keep dragging them around with me.  I learned two things while speaking with her.

1.   Never purchase tickets in advance for anyone again!  Erin is not going now, even though the day I purchased the tickets, she was.  That’s three people that have backed out, after I made the ticket purchase!!  Lee said she would pay me back for her tickets, and she invited my parents to use them.  Since I was going to pay for Erin’s tickets, I am probably stuck with them.  Grrr!

2.    Sunday died over the weekend!!!  Sob!!! When I was there on Sunday, there was a tarp covered heap, but at the time, I didn’t want to know what (who) it was.  It was Sunday!  It’s too depressing to go into details.  This was the ultimate bomb-proof horse; you could ride her through a battlefield and she would just plod sedately forward.   Lunge line lessons will never be the same.  She was 28.  We’ll miss you, Sunday – you were the best lesson horse ever!


Peppy’s Out of ControL!!

 

Since I won’t be able to have a riding lesson for about 3 weeks, M said I could come out tonight and ride one of the lesson horses.  She decided that Pepper would be a good choice, and not being in a position to argue, I agreed.  He’s usually pretty fun to ride, and it’s been a while since I have ridden him.

Everything was great at first.  We started with a nice sitting trot to warm him up, and moved to a posting trot.  He is always fast, being a former roadster pony, but tonight, he raced around the arena.  It wasn’t to bad at a trot.  However, when M asked her lesson rider to canter, Peppy took off, too!  The little ba$+ard!!  He practically FLEW around the ring, totally out of control.  I couldn’t get him to stop, and when I tried, he sped up! 

With M’s verbal assistance, I was finally able to get the little d!ck to stop.  She told me to walk him in circles to calm him down a bit.  Then she asked if I wanted to try to canter him again.  I thought about it while I walked him around the arena two times.  If I didn’t, the lesson would end on a bad note.  If I did, it might end on a worse one.  Since I wasn’t riding again for a while, it was really important to me to end with a sense of accomplishment instead of failure.

I decided to try again, and she had me canter around Harley, who was standing in the middle of the ring with his lesson rider still on.  After a few times around Harley, Pepper was down to a manageable speed, so M had me take him out on the rail, go around a few times, and ask for him to stop.  This all went smoothly, and the lesson ended satisfactorily. 

Silly old horse!  He needs to start acting his age!!

What?! I have to wear a DRESS to the horse show???

 

So, to my utter dismay, I discovered that I am expected to wear a dress to the last night of the horse show.  This is utterly insane!  Why did I have to pick the one discipline of riding where you have to wear make-up, do your hair, and wear a suit to ride your horse??  

Since I have no nice clothes, I ran up to the mall Saturday night.  And spent about 3 hours fruitlessly searching for something that fit, didn’t cost a lot, and looked halfway decent on me.  I finally got the brilliant idea to hit the girls’ department at Lord and Taylor.  Pay dirt!!  I found a black dress on clearance, that fits, and doesn’t make me look like I’m ten.  It also hides the fact that I have nothing up top, and flatters my generous rear.  Yeah!  All that for 30 bucks!!

I also purchased a cute jacket at Marshall Fields and a skirt that matches at Kohls but I’ll be returning them this week.  I wasn’t sure last night if the dress would work, but when I modeled it for Dean today, he said that  it was long enough, and looked nice.  I was worried about the length, but it comes to the tops of my chubby knees, so if I wear spandex hose, all of my jiggly parts should be contained, and everything should look alright.

Now, I have to find a pair of shoes to wear! This is stupid!  I have to wear heels to the horse show??  God, I hope I don’t trip and fall down the stadium steps!!

Sunday at the Tent – Blondie, Keep Your Head UP!

 

Today was the best ride I’ve had on Blondie!  I was able to keep her head up for most of the lesson, and she cantered for me both ways right when I asked.  She even cantered in a nice little ball the second way of the ring, but then she started dropping her head and falling out of it, so M decided we should call it a day and end on a good note.  

After, I was going to ride Woody, but when M warmed him up for her, he started acting like an utter a$$.  She took him outside, and then Kim asked if I wanted to ride Sammy for a little bit.  Since I haven’t ridden him in a while, I thought that sounded like a good plan.  We took turns riding him, then, working on having him stop when he was asked.  Then I tried to give her a lesson, but since I can’t really tell when someone is doing something wrong, I mainly told her what to do.  Walk down that rail, canter to the end of that wall, stop and walk.  Things like that.

M is going to be out of town most of the week.  She said I could ride Sammy tomorrow, so I’ll stop by after work.  I don’t know if I’ll be able to ride next Sunday, because D had left and we couldn’t ask him.  Then the following week I’m in Louisville, so no riding for over 2 weeks.  Boohoo!  I’m not sure when their next Morgan show is, but I think it’s the start of September.  *sob!*  I’ll be glad when the show season is over!

Lesson 5, Block 5

 

Friday’s lesson was a lunge line lesson on Sunday.  No stirrups, no reins.  Yeah!  Sunday is pretty short, so if I fell off, at least I wouldn’t have too far to fall.

No stirrups lessons are really hard for me.  I post off my stirrups, which is a no-no, and  my form is horrible.   I collapse in the middle, instead so sitting up straight.  I also can’t figure out how to sit back in the saddle without standing up in the stirrups. 

We worked on the sitting trot, then the posting trot.  In fact, we spent so much time on this, M didn’t get to toss balls at me, or ask my to mold things out of playdoh.  Darn!  I’m sure she’ll manage to work those into the next lunge line lesson…

Lesson 4, Block 5

 

I rode in the later group lesson last night.  I find it’s a lot more challenging to try to get your horse to do what you want, and avoiding crashing into the other riders in the ring at the same time.  Since I was riding Blondie, this was even more of a factor than if I had ridden one of the lesson horses.  Sometimes it’s really difficult to steer her!

There were 3 other people in the group lesson, and one boarder showed up halfway through to warm up her horse before taking it outside.  That was a lot of people in the arena!  Blondie and I managed not to collide with anyone, though we came really close to running up Gio’s behind on the canter the second way of the ring.  She goes so much faster that way!

I was able to get the canter both ways without too much trouble.  I was even able to get her going again after she broke, with no trouble at all!  I still pull back on the bridle instead of just giving it to her, but it’s getting better.

The one thing that is not improving is her head set.  We had a constant tug of war during the lesson, and she won. M told me not to worry about her head right now; it’s more important to start getting comfortable riding her.  It was so frustrating to be pulled forward all during the lesson.  I just don’t understand how to have light hands, but keep the horse from walking with her head between her knees!  Argh!  It was especially irritating when I rode her down the end of the drive to cool her out. 

Sunday at the Tent

 

It seemed like forever since I’ve gone riding.  I haven’t gone in over a week!  The horse show last weekend interfered, but since Blondie did so well, I didn’t mind.  I guess the Dayton Horse Show was enjoyable enough to miss a few lessons, but it was good to get back on schedule again.

M told me that Blondie escaped from her stall Friday, and spent the night running around the outdoor.  The people who noticed her out the next morning had a hard time catching her, and she was pretty worn out all day yesterday.  I hope that someone didn’t latch the door correctly; it will be a drag to have to bungee her stall door closed if she’s figured out how to open it.  It will still be about a month before the barn is finished.

She and Bentley have also not been getting along.  They tore a hole in the wall between them, and have have been going after each other.  Bentley wa moved down the row, and now Blondie is by herself.  I think she prefers it that way.

I think I did a better job of keeping her head up, but I know that I didn’t do so well keeping her nose in.  I feel like she’s constantly pulling on the bridle, and I’m losing the tug of war.  Still need to work on getting the canter the second way of the ring; I pull back on the reins for balance, which confuses the crap out of her and sends her into a trot instead.  Things were better the other way.

After Blondie, I rode Pearl for the first time.  I was a little leery of her, as she’s only 2, but M said she’s lazy and doesn’t have a mean bone in her body.  We lunged her first, and I got dizzy walking around in circles with her trotting around me.  I don’t know how people do this, as I thought I was going to fall over when we stopped.  Hope I don’t have to lunge too many horses.

Pearl was pretty laid back, though she veered away from the back gate numerous times, so I had to work on getting her passed it without her cutting into the ring.  I was able to get her to canter on my bad side without too much trouble, though she wanted to fall out of it the whole time.  

I think M said that she’s Harley niece.  She’s also related to Blondie; her sire is Blondie’s grandpa.  She’s pretty, has a long flowing mane, and would make a great western horse.  Too bad they can’t find anyone to buy her.  She might be a lesson horse, now.

By the time I was finished riding Pearl, I was hot and sweaty, so I decided to call it a day.  I don’t think there was anybody else for me to ride, anyway.  Summer went home until next spring, Woody has the day off from the horse show, and Tina was there to ride Gio.  I could have probably ridden Harley or Pepper, but I thought I would catch up on everything that I have let go for the past two weeks.  And here I sit instead, blogging!