Getting ready for our class
With M out of town, I headed to the barn for my first solo ride. One of the barn hands was there when I first arrived, but by the time I had Blondie ready to go, she had left. I was the only person there, and it was a dramatic contrast to the usual activity buzzing around the barn.
I received my final piece of equipment from the online tack store to make myself completely independent as far as owning all of my own tack. Blondie now has her very own bit! I was eager to try it out and see how she liked it. She didn't seem to have any problems with it.
I was able to get the western saddle cinched and she even stood still while I bridled her. She's now a conflicted horse; her saddle is western, but her bridle and reins are english. She doesn't seem to mind that, either.
Out in the arena, I walked her, tightened the girth, and stepped aboard. She stood still while I mounted, which is probably a first for her. I was even able to clamber up with the whip tucked in the back of my jods.
I kept this session short. We walked, trotted, and cantered the first way. Then I had her halt and stand to work on her patience a bit. Then we reversed and repeated. I threw in some figure 8s after than, trotted around a few more times, and then walked her out. She was a little nervous because the ring had just been groomed, and there were lots of lines. The tire tracks down the middle of the arena just messed with her mind; she kept hopping over them when we were practicing the figure 8s, which had me cracking up every time. Silly horsie!
After a very satisfying, though short, ride, I hopped off and took her back to her stall. She managed to work up a sweat despite hardly working! It was rather humid, and I was a tad warm as well.
Having survived my solo test ride, I'm ready to hit the barn every night after work. I have worked for two years to get to this point, and now I'm just going to enjoy being able to ride when ever I want. Just a short time ago, I couldn't even bridle a horse! Or put splint boots on the correct way! I still haven't figured out those overly complicated leg wraps...