Saturday, October 17, 2009

First Saturday at the new barn

I've been curious how weekends would go at the new barn — whether it would be considerably busier than it is during the week, and whether I'd have to compete with other horse owners to use the cross ties and the arena.

Today seemed like the perfect day to find out. It has been a gorgeous afternoon: sunny with temperatures in the high 60s.

At the other barns I've been at, on a day like this all the regulars would be out at the barn. To my great surprise, the new place was pretty much dead — I saw a couple of people in passing, but the cross ties and the arena were completely empty.

Of course, I'm not about to complain. I love having time to myself and not a lot of chatting!

Today was also one of those rare days when Michael agreed to accompany me to the barn. Naturally, I forgot my camera so I couldn't capture the moment.

As I've been doing every time I visit, I groomed Panama and then turned him out into the arena. He has taken to turning it into a run-fest every time, which he has never done before — but then again, this is the first time in nearly two years I've had a real arena to turn him out into. I also think he likes the sand footing. He loves to really dig in and race by me.

I hadn't made it out to the barn Thursday or Friday, so this was Panama's first time being turned out in the arena in several days. And it showed! He raced around and around. He must really be bored living with two older horses, because he acted like he'd been cooped up in a stall for two days, instead of a spacious corral.

We also seem to be making some progress regarding the tie stalls. Panama walked right in on the first try this morning. After turnout, he was much more hesitant, but once I got him past his initial block, he walked in and out for me several times without a problem.

I've decided to focus on getting over the outdoor tie stalls for now — once we get past that, I'll start working with him on the indoor barn (which he is much more nervous about, and actually froze up walking past it today because he thought I was going to ask him to go in).

Also, pretty soon here I'm going to have to break it to him that the arena isn't just for playing in. I think I'll lunge him in the arena tomorrow, and ride him briefly on Monday.

So much still to do!

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