I woke up about 4 AM today with a nasty taste in my throat and a runny nose. Yes, the seasonal cold has seized me! By the time I was taking the pup out to spend and getting ready, the rain had started to pour down. If I was a person who believed in omens, I may have stayed home. Or if I was a real old wimp, I would have fed the dog and myself, loaded up with cold medicines and gone back to bed. But it was my second riding lesson of the week! I could not miss it! Not with all the threats of snow and ice. The more lessons I get before its time to be forced indoors, the better!
So I called the taxi as Sunday buses are as reliable as, well, they're not reliable in the least and had to be at the yard for 10:45. After the taxi eventually arrived, I was asked who I wanted to ride today. Cliche or not, I truly don't mind as every horse teaches me something different. As it happens, I rode the gorgeous tall, bay who after the three times I've ridden him, I am falling in love with him.
We got on our horses and headed for the road route. I don't know about where you are in the world but in this part of the UK, it's done nothing but rain and snow all week so the ground is soggy!
My usual instructor was off and we had another girl who I don't remember taking us before but I was pleasantly surprised on how much she knew I knew how to do.
My first trot was rather funny as I almost forgot about that slight bounce but soon was lovely rhythm with him. We found a few pieces of ground to canter on and I am pleased to report, my first canter was lovely. Stayed in my seat so well on this first which I have not managed to do on this horse who of course is relatively new to me.
My second canter was not happening but I'm feeling what is going wrong more each time so the third came and it was good. Not as in my seat as I would have liked but went to trot and managed to get him back into a canter again.
I know my second canter lacked seat whereas my last I hadn't pushed all my weight into my heels as I had on the first. However, my position with my back was much better again and I don't feel like I'm going to fly off as I have in the past. I'm pleased on how fast I've adjusted to this lovely bay and hope I continue to make improvements.
On the way home, as the rain was pelting down, the girl walking with me and I started singing Christmas songs to him. His ears went forward so either he was trying to block the sound completely or he liked the festive sing-a-long.
He was slightly restless but the last few trots were controlled and consistent. I had to use a fair bit of half halting on him today but it was good he was slightly fussy as he's always been so good on my previous rides. The one thing I was ultimately pleased with was I felt, finally like my heels are in exactly the right place to give him the good squeezes he needs. I have the concept of heel and seat in my head, I just need to work on it when in the saddle.
My right stirrup kept slipping but it was so wet, I can't say that surprised me.
Once back at the yard, I jumped off, and slipped, yet again, clearly not used to the extra hand I need to adjust my landing skill. Thankfully, didn't hurt myself, laughed it off and led him into his stable. He did stand on my foot,but that was my own fault for not being as bossy as I should have when leading him in.
Untacked, put a cooler and rug on, fed him a few polos and gave my tall, bay friend a huge hug and left his stable. As I stood outside, clearly knowing where the polos were, he kept nudging me and giving me kisses so who can refuse a cheeky, charming horse who asks so nicely?
It was a fantastic lesson so I'll hopefully have more to report next Sunday as we're moving to weekend rides until the weather improves. So a double ride next Sunday, providing England hasn't descended into the world of white. Fingers crossed it holds off until Christmas Day!
Thanks for reading,