Jumping on the bandwagon so late there might not even still be a bandwagon. That’s just how I roll lately.
1. Mares or Geldings? Why?
Geldings. Mares and I do not work. I’ve only ever enjoyed one.
2. Green-broke or Fully Broke?
Aspiration: fully broke.
Reality: green broke.
Tris was basically still wild when I started working with them – he did not know how to be groomed or pick up his feet. I helped put him in a squeeze chute at the rescue to get his shots.
Training him has been a remarkable experience but every time I sit on a trained horse, I feel so much better about myself. I feel like I do actually know how to ride.
3. Would you own a “hotter” breed (ie. Arabian, Trakhener, etc).
Nope. Not my style. I prefer a kick ride to a pull ride.
I mean, I would like to do a little less kicking, TRISTAN, but I am not mentally built to enjoy a horse with a bit of an edge.
4. What was your “dream horse” growing up?
Black mustang stallion. I had it all planned out, you guys. He was going to be untamable by anyone but me and we would go on moonlit adventures and I would spend hours crying into his silky mane.
I got the mustang and the crying part right, I guess?
5. What kind of bit(s) do you use and why?
I’ve gone over the bits of my past before.
Tris currently goes in a loose ring double-jointed snaffle for dressage and trail riding, and a full cheek double-jointed snaffle for jumping. He hasn’t needed anything more in a long time.
6. Helmets or no helmets?
WHY THE FUCK IS THIS EVEN A QUESTION?!
WHY WHY WHY.
Or, really, secretly I think we would all answer this question as that lovely dappled iron-grey look but as we all know grey horses are all about getting your hopes up and then getting gradually disappointed.
8. Least favorite horse color?
Paint. Any variation. Meh.
9. Dressage or Jumping?
Dressage, no question. It has the kind of problems that my brain likes to solve.
10. How many years have you been riding?
Ummmmmm. 20+, I think, on and off.
11. Spurs/whip or no spurs/whip?
Both. Every time I go without, I regret it. See also #3 above.
12. Your first fall?
Big rawboned QH lesson horse; I was in a semi-private lesson with another girl, her horse took a nutty and my horse did a patented little hop and twist. I landed on my feet, directly next to his head, facing backwards, still holding the reins. Still not sure how. I ruined the effect when my knees buckled and I then sat down on my ass almost immediately.
13. When was the last time you rode and what did you do?
Last Friday night (goddamn it); worked on loosening Tristan up and then on his canter, particularly getting better quality up transitions.
14. Most expensive piece of tack you own?
My dressage saddle, for sure. But even then it is way less than what most people consider expensive for a saddle. I paid $1,200 for it. It’s a used Albion.
15. How old were you when you started riding?
I’m honestly not entirely sure. 10, maybe? Middle school.
16. Leather or Nylon halters?
Personally, I prefer leather for their oh-shit-breakability, but I have nothing personal against nylon.
17. Leather or Synthetic saddles?
Leather. Again, nothing personal against synthetic. I owned a Wintec saddle for a while that I still wish had worked out. It didn’t fit Tristan, but it was great to bomb around in and not worry about.
18. What “grip” of reins do you like?
Hm. I have yet to see a webbed dressage rein with stops that didn’t get all crappy after a while. I love my rubber reins on my jumping bridle, but not for every day use. I really kind of hate laced reins. I like the idea of plain leather reins but not the actuality of them.
I wish you could still find plaited reins. Actually braided, not laced. I loved those.
19. English or Western?
English. Western saddles make me feel like I am trapped and give me panic attacks.
20. How many horses do you currently own/lease?
Just the one, thank God.
21. Do you board your horse? Self-care/full board? Home board?
Boarded at a barn I love.
22. Have you ever had to put down a horse that you loved?
Not personally, but I was a strong advocate for the first horse I ever truly loved to be put down. He was in terrible pain and no longer comfortable even in a field, and he stayed too long before his owner was able to make the call. Someday, I’ll decide for Tristan.
23. How many saddlepads do you have?
Ummmmm…three? Four? Three in regular rotation.
24. Slant-load trailer or straight haul?
Straight. I buy the argument that slant loads are uncomfortable for most horses.
(Really my ideal is open & loose in a stock trailer, but that is a semi-rare thing in the northeast.)
25. Why do you ride?
It keeps my brain on an even keel, and when I ride, I can’t think or worry or stress about anything. I just ride. It’s like when I sit on a horse there’s a minute adjustment and all of a sudden all the tiny watch gears inside my body are well-oiled and run smoothly again.