It was nice and cool this morning, and may stay so for the bulk of the day....which might tempt me to ride just a little.
BUT, and this is a big one, those B 52's are a plague. Hopefully the bug armor would keep the Boys feeling secure about them, but I have never testing it with this many huge bombers about.
At any rate, all three Boys have already had a workout. I lunged everyone, combining a trotting pole and the little jump for some variety.
Tucker was first. Again, I have to admire his absolute relaxation about jumping. He has a casual approach, a confidence about going over, and a quiet landing. As I've said before, he'd probably make nice hunter if I wanted to pursue it with him. Perhaps if my young rider comes over to teach him the changes, I'll have her take him over a few little fences just for fun.
Chance had his work next. Interesting. He trotted and cantered just fine on the right hand. But he kept trying to canter over the pole on the ground instead of trotting it, treating it as a jump. The, when he did the jump, he was very good about it. Then I put him on the left hand and he simply would not stay in a trot. If it was a result of being excited after the jumping, it was the most relaxed excitement I've ever seen. Finally, I brought him in to me, then sent him back out and asked for the canter. I figured if that was all he wanted to do, he might as well do it because I told him to. After his little jumping session on the left, I went back to the trot work and he was just fine, so we finished on a high note.
Since Toby had been observing the whole thing, I "asked" him if he was interested and he let me slip the halter on. I gave him a short workout as he really hasn't done a thing in weeks. It is clear though, as I watch him, that he is by far the best trained and, in many ways the most athletically adept of the Boys. He has a nice bouncy trot, and when he jumps he really uses himself well. Today he did not get overly excited about jumping as he sometimes does, which was good as I didn't want to overstress him. Because of his more level build--his neck is set lower on his shoulder than is ideal for dressage--he would be a really nice show hunter. I curtailed his dressage career because I felt it wasn't fair to force him to lift his front end as much as the upper levels needed. And, the work did cause him some soreness in his hind end because of it. I would much rather see him now, at 19, looking absolutely sound, than have a broken down dressage horse who had been forced to work beyond his physical comfort.
Since Tucker had some hind end soreness too, that may be a limiting factor for him as well, but we will see. I don't really have any ambitions for competition at the moment anyhow. I still want to progress with the training, but if I don't end up in the show arena, that's just fine.
Essentially, after all these years, I've kind of "Been there, done that." Since I cannot afford a true Grand Prix horse, I will just see what I can do with the Boys I have. I still think it's possible to teach the upper level movements to an average horse, provided you do not expect them to strive for "10's."
Now, the question is. Will it be too cool out to go for a swim? Bet the water will feel warmer than the air!