Sorry I disappeared for a while, we had no class last week. And I got sick. Plus, this post deleted itself before I was able to publish it. But now I’m back! This week, Christina was still not here. We had Donna as our sub and got to choose our own horses. By the time I was able to even see the list, there was only one horse available: Chuck E. That’s how I found myself riding the hottest horse in the class on the coldest, windiest, and wettest day so far this year.
Instead of having the employees mount us up, we were going to mount in the arena. I got Chuck E from a trainee, and led him down into the covered arena. I stepped to his side and shortened the stirrups, whoever rode him last had really long legs. I mounted using a mounting block, and walked him around to warm up while waiting for everyone but one other person to mount up. Once everyone was on their horses, I asked Chuck E for a trot, just quick enough to warm him up, but slow enough for me to be able to sit. We rode around a few times, warming up the same way as usual.
After, we halted in a line and voted on what we wanted to do: stay in the main arena and do patterns, or take a roadtrip up to one of the private arenas. Nobody except for me voted, so we ended up going up to the jumping arena to trot around. I gave Chuck E a long rein and followed the rest of the class up the hill to the jumping arena. When we got there, I shortened my reins and hoped Chuck E wasn’t terrified of puddles. We walked a circle before Donna told us to trot. I gave Chuck E a light cue to speed up to the next gait, and he did so. Sitting his trot while we splashed in puddles wasn’t easy, so I began to post to make trotting easier and to regulate how fast he was moving.
Donna decided we could go walk the poop loop and head back down to the main arena to lope, so we left the arena soon after. While on the walk, we found the vista arena to be empty so we rode in there, too. We walked one circle to get acquainted and were then allowed to trot. I posted his trot again, in another uncovered arena. After trotting for a few laps, we lined up to lope. I decided that in order to keep him under control, I needed to split my reins. So I did. I circled him before loping to calm him down a little bit, and let him go. We went around the arena and stopped at the back of the line. We went again, with two people this time, and I let Centaur’s rider go ahead while I circled Chuck E as he cantered in tiny circles. This happened as we loped in groups of three. We turned on the haunches and did the same thing the other direction. We turned on the haunches once more, and headed back down to the main arena.
Once we got to the main arena, we were able to do whatever we wanted as long as we stayed in our designated lesson area. We could walk, trot, or lope (2 laps at most at a time). I worked on my two point at the trot before loping Chuck E. I practiced slowing him down (and calming him down) while steering, in a more familiar arena that wasn’t slippery and wet. I trotted another lap before loping again, when Chuck E did a slow, calm, and collected lope. Even Donna commented on how calm it was.
What a surprise.
P.S. This post was going to come out yesterday, but as said before, WordPress deleted my post before it could be published. Thanks for the patience!