Sunday, December 20, 2009

A warm-weather weekend

This weekend was gorgeous, sunny with highs in the 40s and 50s — a real treat after the cold weather we just recently had. I spent a good amount of time out at the barn both afternoons.

On Saturday, my mother-in-law and I went out to the barn around mid-afternoon to meet Voodoo's owner. We turned him and Panama out together, and they ran around for a bit. Then Panama's other buddy, a little gruella mustang affectionately named Spaghetti, joined them. Spaghetti and Voodoo played together, leaving poor Panama out! I tried to get them all to run together, but Spaghetti and Voodoo only wanted to bite at each other and rear up together, and Panama followed me around forlornly, like the outcast kid hanging out with the playground monitor at recess.

Today I turned Panama out for a bit by himself, and he quite happily rolled and sunbathed, but didn't want anything to do with running. So I groomed him and grabbed his bridle, and hopped on for a bit bareback. It was a bit of a cheater thing to do, because it meant that I didn't practice much of what my trainer wanted me to work on (leg yields and circles that get gradually smaller and bigger again). I did work on it a little, but being bareback, I only worked on it at a walk.

I did practice trotting bareback a little, but I still feel fairly unsteady about it. I'm getting better about my balance, but today I kept riding forward on his withers (OUCH!), and I think I'm clinging to the reins a little bit too much. I'd like to learn how to post bareback, which I've heard is possible, though I don't know how well I'll be able to manage!

I did ride for a long time today. About halfway through, Panama's other girlfriend, a striking 5-year-old piebald named Flash, came in with her owner. She was riding bareback too, though with a bareback pad, so we walked our horses together and chatted for a while. Toward the end we parked them side by side to talk, and both stood quietly, occasionally sniffing one another's noses, but in general being very calm and quiet! It was a lovely, long, relaxing ride!



At December 21, 2009 at 4:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice horse moments!

Posting bareback is fun - and it'll really improve your posting in the saddle. The trick is you can't grip with your legs - if you do it won't work - you just have to let the horse push you up a tiny bit on every other trot beat, and if you can get the rhythm it just comes along.

At December 21, 2009 at 5:19 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

Kate, they were indeed some nice moments. :o)

So at the risk of sounding dumb, what happens if you try to trip with your legs to post bareback? Upper legs, obviously, since I don't want to send Panama into outer space. :o)


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