Thursday was awesome! Thursday started out with about 15 minutes of longeing in the chambon and surcingle, and he was forward and soft and lifting his back and all good things. Then I tacked him up in the ring and we rode and zoooooooooom pony. I had a forward, sensitive horse with a warmed up back who had a few glorious strides of a higher self=carriage than he’s yet achieved.
I tested the waters with some shoulder-in and haunches-in and it quickly became apparent that wasn’t the ride I had to do. Instead, we worked on half-halts and using them to collect, not kill the motor. We did leg yields one step at a time, half-halting on the straight parts, and rode every step of the shoulders through circles.
We finished with just a few circles at the canter, and he was more maneuverable and balanced than he’s been in months. Whooooo! I’m not thrilled he had two weeks of just free-longeing but they actually seemed to have done him some good both mentally and physically. I think we’ve finally reached a tipping point for his muscle development, in that we’re layering good on top of good and now that there’s definition it will only increase.
My hand was pretty much fine; right now it only hurts if I bump the cut or make a tight fist. Just a little while longer and it will be all healed.
Even better: HOUSTON, WE HAVE SHEDDING!
Then, there was Friday. Friday was an insane sprint at work from start to finish and I was so much in the zone that as soon as breathing space appeared, I packed up, changed into barn clothes, and headed to the barn, only a little bit later than I’d hoped for.
Then I stepped outside my car, sniffed the air, and realized crap, it’s really cold. Checked my phone: yep, 8 degrees. No riding for me. So I thought: I’ll make the most of it! I did Tristan’s topline exercises, did carrot stretches, fussed over him generally, and then started to get excited about the prospect of a quiet night of getting home early and maybe watching a movie and getting to bed at a reasonable hour, something that hadn’t happened in two weeks.
Got in the car, headed up the driveway, and put my hat down on the passenger seat. I glanced down to see where I was putting it for just a split second and as I did that, I could feel the right front wheel of the car catch in slightly deeper snow and then a split second later…