Well, the local Pony Club is located two minutes from my house, at the end of the street, and for years I had watched and dreamed of the day I could be a part of that. Even when I got Penny I didn't join, partly becoz she was too old to be dooing too much, and there was also the expense and lack of a float.
But, seeing as i'm working more now and found a float to borrow, I joined up. I was pretty nervous, as I had been told that most horses get wound up/nervous on their first day, and the fact that Shea's only 6 and a tb and off the track didn't help. I was excited for weeks leading up to it, but the day before I just felt sick with nerves.
So we got there early, one of the first to arrive and Shea seemed calm enough, which was good. We brought Penny along which helped - she'd done pony club for years before I got her, so she was totally unconcerned, as soon as she got off the float she just started eating, lol.
Then more people and horses started to arrive and the more that came the more nervous and hyper Shea became, he would not stand still when tied and kept calling out, and was just generally really tense. To more experienced people this would probably be nothing but to me it was a first, and compared to Penny who is bombproof Shea is a whole different picture.
I got him tacked up and my mum kept him on the lead while I got on and lead him down to where everyone was lining up, as I didn't trust him not to bolt, or just generally spaz out.
He had his head up and was so tense he was quivering beneath me - you know how they say "coiled like a spring"? Well that was Shea. Mum and I could see the people looking at us like "silly girl's gone and bought a young thoroughbred tsk tsk". He would not stand still, was whirling all over the place, rearing a little and spooking at everything. After we had our gear checked mum and I worked with him while the other girl's went and did their activities, and after a while mum let me off the lead, confident that he wouldn't do anything stupid.
I was expecting that we would have to spend the whole day just keeping him calm, and I would have been happy to just watch with him calm enough to walk around. But within an hour I was joining in with everybody else and by the end of the day he had calmed right down and looked like every other horse. He was even standing still, which in itself was a HUGE thing for him.
One of the instructors told me that when she saw that I was in her group for that session, she had thought to herself "oh no! It's that horse" (we'd earned a bit of a reputation as the crazy new horse/ the young ottb), but she and two others told me how impressed they were with him and how much he'd calmed.
He was brilliant!!! I am soooo proud of him!!!
Sorry about the long post guys, I just had to share!