What a fun but totally crazy last few days it’s been. Work is getting super busy but I still find what I’m doing rewarding and interesting, so I can’t really ask for more. Though it would be nice if I didn’t have to work and I could just be a professional Armature. Dreams, yes?
I had a lesson on Friday which was, I think, really productive. Even though we’re forced to work in the indoor because it’s dark so early now, I got to do a little pole work and jumping. Over the trot poles I really worked on tunneling Dandy straight and keeping the forward momentum, not letting him slow down through the middle. Same thing with the canter poles. JLE had me not worry at all about where Dandy’s head was and how collected he was, and just to worry about the connection and the forwardness. I think this helped a lot because we weren’t constantly getting in arguments over how we should look.
Finally JLE put the jump to a small X and I just kind of lost it. I was throwing myself up his neck and letting him run out to the side after the jump instead of continuing in our straight line. JLE was a little confused and probably annoyed with me for just giving up over the fence and she had to really pound it into my brain that if I’m nervous (though I shouldn’t be because it’s just a little 18 inch X-rail and I’ve jumped way higher), I need to be thinking harder, be tighter in my core, and solid in my seat. Of course she was right but I just haven’t had anyone remind me of that in a while. She hiked the jump up to just a little 2’ vertical and this time I did my best to sit and wait and be tight over the jump. It was much improved.
The hardest part about this exercise wasn’t the jump per say, but the fact that I was supposed to jump and then do a 20 m circle at the end of the arena to get Dandy collected. Dandy is having a really hard time with this because his neck is just way too long for his back. I had to really sit down on my outside seat bone and lift him up with the inside leg. I wasn’t feeling much that night but on Saturday my ass was SORE.
Anyway, we talked about it afterwards and JLE wants me to take a few lessons on Archie who is one of her schoolies that used to jump GP levels and is a similar build as Dandy. Unfortunately he’s got a pretty busy schedule but I think we can work out something… I hope so because JLE and I definitely think it’d be good to get on a horse who will teach me what it’s supposed to feel like. It’s frustrating working with Dandy who just can’t put himself together like I’m asking.
Saturday I got up early to go to a tack sale and was very glad I did. I found a great maroon wool coolor for $25. Granted, it was mislabeled (which I suspected at the time) and is really probably a 75/76 instead of an 80/81 but it covers all but the last inches of Dandy’s butt and you really can’t beat that price!
Finally on Sunday it was Dandy’s favorite day ever: clip day! Okay, not really. I got to the barn bright and early to take advantage of the sun trying to peak through and gave him a bath. I honeslty thought about skipping it, thinking that he wasn’t too dirty. Really glad I didn’t because without any soap the water was just coming off him brown. Ugh.
While I waited him to
dry get less wet, I reaaranged my tackbox, changed the clipper blades and had some coffee. Finally I got too bored and it was getting too late so I had to dive in and start clipping. The only part that was really tough was the belly and that was probably more because Dandy was having a temper tantrum then because it was still damp. The damp hair on his side did make it hard to get the line I really wanted though.