Monday, August 13, 2007

Lines and Fences

And FLIES!!!

Had a chiropractor appointment and physical therapy in the AM, but it was already getting fairly hot, so I decided to work the horses later.

I also went to school to talk to the principal about my teaching schedule--I am not a happy camper--but he wasn't there. So I gossiped a bit, complained a bit, connected with the technology department--since I have a computer lab, I have good friends there-- then went to the post office to send off some mail and buy some stamps.

Home again, I fed the Boys and waited until digestion was complete.

Then I went out to lunge. I set up a little jump at just about a foot and a half high.

Since Chance was the only one who didn't run out to the pasture, I lunged him first. Pleased to say he took both leads nicely, with a few little mistakes taking the right one, but one he had it, he stuck to it. Then I sent him towards the jump. What a little angel! No hesitation, no questions, no panic, just nice smooth jumps, three times in each direction. What I loved was how quiet and honest he was about it. What a great attitude! I hope it sticks as I start back into training him more seriously.

I went out to get either Toby or Tucker next and the clever Toby pulled a trick on me. When I called he came over right away to get a treat, but when I started to halter him, he bounded off, still chewing. Sneaky boy. I did have to laugh because he knew exactly what he was doing and had planned it from the first.

Far less dishonest, Tucker let me halter him and then took the treat. I lunged him as well and then set him at the little fence. He too was quiet about it. The nice change that I saw was that this time, he was really lifting himself off his hind end instead of jumping off his forehand. He did run out once, so his overall grade lost a few points, but he was great otherwise.

The biggest flaw in our lunging session was the darn B52 horse flies. At least four of the darn things kept buzzing him. He did have the fly sheet on, but they kept looking for bare horse to attack. Twice I pulled him in and tried to swat them. I did finally kill three of them, but number 4 was too fast for me. They are nasty, persistent pests, and I can attest they REALLY hurt when they bite.

When I took Tucker back in, Toby was looking for some attention, so he graciously let me halter him and out we went. Well. The lone B52 had stuck around and Toby made it clear he didn't like the critter any more than I did. His trot started off fine, leapt off into several bucks, turned into a canter, deteriorated into more bucking and I eventually lost count of how many rounds he'd done. The fly finally gave up and I asked Toby to jump the fence as well.

Of the three horses, he is the most experienced over jumps, so his style varies between complete nonchalance to total exuberance, depending on just how he decides to take the obstacle. He really is an athletic jumper and could probably take a huge fence with ease. But, my jumping days are really over except for the occasional fun session. Still, I love to watch him go over.

I finished up, fed everyone a nice juicy carrot and called it a night.

I will ride at some point tomorrow as I have a lesson with Gabriel on Wednesday.

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