Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Learning to ride

As I said in an e-mail today, T is the horse to get me as far as I can go. Maybe Sleipnir would be better, but other than that ...

I had my first lesson of the season today, and it was good and hard and fun and disappointing and different and new.

The new riding area is a wonderful ring that was dry despite all the rain the past few days. We still have the steep ramp, although I am told a better one is on the way. A passer-by didn't think it would work, and he helped us. We would have been fine, but the extra shoulder to lean on was nice.

One of the big differences is that Kate, another instructor who always helped with me, is not working with SPIRIT at the moment. I am far from the only one who misses her. She is teaching at another program and no doubt she will be a success.

For me, this meant that after we got in the ring, only Dada was with me. That was fine. She didn't need to catch me or anything, although I did wobble a lot.

Dada stayed close to me and T -- just as well -- but as usual that means T really follows Dada, not my commands. That is one reason I think I do better at shows. The horses are so despondent that Dada is not there that they follow me. Also, like usual, my first ride of a test was the best.

After that I started having problems with the reins -- we did not have both rein clips -- and they were either too long or too short. Also, I can't really squeeze and release the reins constantly like I need to if they are always sliding on me.

And my feet kept coming out of the stirrups. The toestoppers do not fit on the Western saddle stirrups, and we did not have rubber bands. We will have to decide on which saddle works better: the Western one with the horn or the dressage one with the toestoppers.

We will fix things, and despite the problems, it was such fun. And I am going to a show in a few weeks!


Ro said...

From the piccy, T looks as if she was a bit of a handful! Good Luck for the shows

Matt said...

She is a bouncy gal; it is great!