Saturday, 25 February 2012

The Dutch Gag Makes an Entrance

My Beautiful Boy!

Oh my goodness!  What a difference. I never thought Santana could look like this.  He looks like a different horse.  Is this really my Santana?  I can't quite believe it.  

Lovely horse - shame about the rider!

Loving it!

This was the first time riding in a Dutch Gag and, it would seem that he loves it.   He just 'got it' as soon as I started to take up a contact and separated my hands he dropped straight into the contact.

I still have a whole heap of work to do on my position.  My weight is way too far forward which sends my leg back.  I still nag nag nag at him with my legs which I must stop doing.  He has so much potential - I can see that now, after only one lesson he's looking fantastic.

We even cantered several times round the track and on a 20m circle.  I had no worries that he was going to shoot off.  Mind you he was pretty tired by then - we haven't worked this hard for ages!

 I really think he enjoyed himself though.  He felt relaxed and happy.  I am still flying high and I can't wait for next Saturday now because I'm going to keep this good thing going while I can.

I can't believe that my humble cob can look so good, not only that but even with me rocking about on his back too!


Thursday, 23 February 2012

Pelham's Swan Song

Oh yes!  I have removed the Pelham from the bridle.  The Pelham has now left the building. Yikes!!!

On Sunday, I rode out with Jasmine.  I had loosened the curb chain so much the last couple of weeks that it was now dangling around his chin and probably annoying him more than it had been when it was tight.  So, off it came.  (I put it in my pocket while we rode - just in case.  I could hear it jingling comfortingly).  Anyway, the ride went without a hitch.  I have to admit that there were no incidents where I could really put my brakes to the test, but he generally stopped or slowed down when I asked him to.  I can't ask for more than that can I?

So, I was offered the loan of a three ring gag as a mid-way step between the Pelham and hanging cheek snaffle so I took the opportunity.  I also booked a lesson for next Saturday which will be the first time trying it out.

Here is the Pelham, "sans curb", after our ride.  Do you think Santana has a cheeky glint in his eye - like he has something up his sleeve?  (Please don't look at the muddy socks!)

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Another year passes by...

I had a nice day today which is just as well as it was my birthday :D It started with mucking out Sonny and Santana on my own as Jasmine is living the high life skiing in Austria. I did think it was going to be stressful and hard work doing both of the horses on my own but I have found that it is quite the opposite and have actually enjoyed 'doing my own thang'. I put the horses out and went off to work. Someone randomly brought a large box of Milk Tray in today so I claimed them in honour of my birthday :p.

Back to the farm after work to bring horses in (in daylight - what a novelty!). Took their rugs off and gave them each a brush before putting on their pj's and giving them dinner.

Next stop to my very good friend's house as she was taking me out to dinner. Now feeling stuffed with nachos, enchiladas and key lime pie washed down with a half of lager.


Sunday, 5 February 2012

A Quiet Walk ...Not!

On Saturday, as the ground was so hard from the freezing temperatures over the last few days, we thought we'd just have a quiet walk around a couple of fields on the farm.  We knew snow was forecast for Saturday night so we were not likely to be able to ride on Sunday and Jasmine goes off skiing next Friday so it was the last chance for her to ride before then.

We tacked up with frostbitten fingers and set off out of the yard.  All went according to plan until halfway around the second field when we met a yard mate coming the other way.  She took her horse to the side of the track and waited for us to pass.  Well, by the reaction from our two you'd have thought she was riding a dragon or something.  Jogging and giraffe impressions went from bad to worse until Santana could take it no more and shot off across the field.  He didn't get too far before I brought him back (remember, I have no curb chain anymore - yikes!). 

Once we had passed the horse-eating monster we thought they would settle down. Unfortunately not.  Sonny was so lively Jasmine had to get off and make sure there was nothing wrong with her tack.  While we were waiting Santana was dancing on the spot.  Having checked all was okay Jasmine got back on and we danced and pranced our way back to the yard.  So much for a nice quiet relaxing walk!

Jasmine was quite upset but I tried to point out the positives - nothing had really gone badly wrong, although both of them had been very full of themselves and lively - Sonny didn't rear or do anything else untoward - they were both just uncharacteristically energetic, and they were egging each other on.  We congratulated ourselves on coping and getting back home with both of us in one piece and still on board!

No pictures I'm afraid, I rather had my hands full!