Lesson 8.6

Despite the rain, the temperature was rather pleasant. I didn’t even take my sweatshirt to the barn. I did stash a hand warmer in my vest, because I’m always afraid that I will be cold.

Wednesday was a small class. There were only four of us, and M had me ride Sammy since Kim wasn’t there. D (who also wasn’t in attendance) wanted to see how I handled him, now that I am sitting back and in better control of the horse.

After the lesson, M said it’s the best I’ve ever ridden Sammy. I concentrated on sitting back and keeping him slow. He likes to jig forward in a trot when he’s supposed to be walking, and likes to be fast. M asked if I wanted to canter him alone, because he can be really strong, and I definitely felt better with that idea.

Just before I was going to canter, a boarder showed up with her horse and a lunge line. This is so annoying! They’ve been holding the group lesson on Wednesday nights for at least two years, and with the small size of the arena, I’d think that the boarders would have enough courtesy to plan their horse time around the one hour lesson block. Nope! There’s always at least one boarder that insists on bringing their horse to the arena to create additional traffic while we are trying to have our lesson.  It is distracting and can also be dangerous if they aren't paying attention to what they are doing.

Actually M said something to the boarder, because we only had about 15 minutes left, but she didn’t take the clue and insisted on clogging up the far end of the arena. I cantered Sammy in circles at the other end, and then when we changed directions, M wanted everyone to canter together, but I would remain on circles. That was the plan, at any rate.

Sammy picked up the canter, but he grabbed bit and dropped his head, and off we went. I would have picked up a circle at the far end, but the boarder was down there with her horse!! Instead, we raced around the arena, and I couldn’t pull him around in a circle until we had gone a complete circuit around. By then he was strong and fast, and I had a problem getting him to turn in a small circle. The idiotic boarder had stopped her horse by that point, which was a good thing, as we probably would have run into them!

It took a couple of circles to get him under control and soft on the bit again.   He slowed to a nice, easy canter, and it was the best he's been for me.  He was pretty much the perfect gentleman all lesson.  He does have one annoying habit; his head doesn't bend to the left.  At all.  I tried turning him on circles when we were walking the horses out, and he was twisting his head into of bending his neck.  Kim definitely needs to work on that!

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