14 July 2011, 9:30pm
Short one tonight, I have to be up early for work.
I finally got off my butt and rode today. I've pretty much decided that I don't actually hate the saddle fit as much as I thought I did. I can feel him and he can feel me and I'm riding pretty well. Not 'pretty' but definitely effective. He is responding from my seat alone for downwards transitions, except of course walk to halt (he has always been a bit sticky with that and yes, I try to work on it, but it doesn't really make that much difference). I keep forgetting not to use my reins to slow him down - it is a habit of nearly 10 years that no coach has ever told me was wrong before my current one - but I'm getting there and I don't slip up as often.
The baby was pretty good. I'm supposed to be riding Monty in a lot of straight lines so riding in my work paddock is therefore pretty hard so I had to take him out, and I'm not allowed out on my own. Can't leave the baby home alone, she goes completely berko and I don't want her getting hurt (will do some show hunter with her and therefore need unblemished legs, so can't have any injuries), so I had to pony her, which is a good thing to do with her anyway. It was interesting, she took a while to get the idea but that's ok because she's only a baby. Took her back towards home and got very frustrated because both were being rude and it's really hard to handle two rude horses at once so handed baby to Mum and concentrated on Monty.
We got home without event after that, though Satin needs a lot more work on desensitising to traffic. Every single car that passed was apparently terrifying and that set Monty off because he's so sensitive. I did some work in the paddock after our ride out with Monty and then had to give the baby a bath because she had a pooey bum (just all the green grass, I think, but we have the vet coming while I'm at work tomorrow to drench her for sand and check her teeth to make sure nothing's going awry) - THAT was an interesting exercise. I don't think she's ever been washed before. She took a while to settle about the water and every time it touched a new part of her body the circus started all over again! We did some backwards/forwards/sideways work, and then called it a day and took her back to the paddock, and she was EXCELLENT to lead after the leading reminder. No pushing, no trying to go fast, none of that silly baby rudeness.
Foals are hard work, and of course you've got to get it right or you spoil them. When they're this little (she's only about 12.2-13hh) it's not such a big drama but we're all pretty much expecting her to hit 15hh+ and when they get that big, bad behaviour is kind of intimidating. I've been lucky that the worst I've ever owned was a biter (the pony, and he never REALLY stopped nipping). Satin's difficult about her feet (she is supposed to be good about them but it's new people in a new place so I understand why that's scary), sometimes rude, can be bitey, and has baby reactions to 'scary' things that are only scary because they're new. And she's a quiet, bold type! I like them bold and cheeky though, don't really get along with timid horses.
Still got my flu-ish thing but now it's just a cough and sore throat with a bit of a snotty nose so I'll probably be ok for work tomorrow as long as I take some cough lollies. We'll see in the morning.