I haven’t ridden much lately between some trips and the weather. It seems like every day that I’m scheduled to do something non-horse related that weather will not impact it is sunny and lovely out, but as soon as horse time is possible, cue torrential downpour.
Last Tuesday I brought Copper in despite the rain and he was a little on the stupid side. I’m convinced that it was 90% herd bound, 10% “I am a horse that is eating lots of high test grass, let me be wild.” My reaction was a mixture between ugh and Oh Jesus depending on whether or not he was physically attached to me via lead rope at the time of the crazy. The crazy was basically him neighing frantically to the mares (who didn’t respond) and tossing his body around in fury at being tied. Copper ties well. It’s one of his good skills, so the foolishness was annoying. Anyway, since I’d walked out in the rain to retrieve him and since I had L there to scrape me off the wall if he was stupid, I went ahead and rode him. I did a good bit of ground work before getting on him to settle him and get his attention, but it was pretty obvious that he was more relaxed/less crazy if he was in motion. He wasn’t perfect when I rode him, but he listened to me pretty well. He was kind of fussy about sidepassing and threw his head around, but that’s not his favorite activity generally anyway, and it involves standing still, so I wasn’t surprised about the lack of enthusiasm. I wasn’t going to ride long, it was more for the sake of riding him through the crazy than anything, so once he did everything asked of him satisfactorily I was done. We basically did lots of trotting, stopping, backing, circling, etc.
Since last Tuesday, I only rode last night, so he went a week without work because of my being out of town Thursday-Saturday, then rain Sunday and Monday. On Tuesday I just cleaned around the barn and brought him in and groomed and lunged him to see if all the gray matter was functioning. Yesterday L came up to ride with me, so we brought Copper in for me and Paige in for her. She generally prefers Robin, but since it was so windy we thought Robin may be a little silly and with Copper being a touch on the spooky side here lately, it put my mind as ease more to have steady Paige in the mix instead.
L rode Paige hunt seat and Paige did fine. Was kind of “potatoey” which is how we describe lazy-unenthusiastic Paige. It was her first ride since before winter though, so we can’t blame her much. Copper was good once he started paying attention. He was mildly concerned about all the horses who were still in the field, or more likely his crazy donkey friends. Apparently Chloe is in raging heat and is doing her best to seduce him, which is quite honestly hilarious and disturbing at the same time. She follows him around with her ears pinned and mouth open and will occasionally squat and pee. At first I thought there was something wrong with her because of the gaping open mouth, but L mentioned that she must be in heat and it all made sense then, though it is still bizarre to watch.
After riding Copper, I crawled on Paige, mainly to see how horribly my HDR fits me. Well, the fit isn’t ideal, but I’m not flowing out of it as I worried. More unusual is how accustomed to Copper my body is. Sitting on Paige and Robin just feels weird. Of course, Paige felt super weird since I was in a hunt seat saddle for the first time in a long time. I forgot how annoying it is when the buckles on your stirrups leathers rub your thighs in a hunt seat saddle. Ouch much?