Literally. Today was long. I kept working and learning all day. I was in the tack room learning until well after dark, but when I’m learning horse stuff, it’s invigorating. I just soak it in.
Tarrin took some photos of me riding Drew at my lesson, which was late in the day, thanks to a crowded schedule (all that rain messed things up for everyone). The sunset was pretty, though.
The photos are useful, though, because they help me see where I’m doing well and where my techniques could use some work. Drew and I both are leaning too much sometimes! No wonder the saddle slipped at one point!
That’s the thing, though. Even if I keep bringing up my age (the autumnal years, riding into the sunset), I know I’m staying younger and more mentally astute by keeping on a learning path. We all need to have something that keeps us engaged and active, right? Studies have shown…and all that.
I’m glad Tarrin and all my horse-loving friends share their knowledge so we can all learn from each other. Off we go looking for the next sunrise.
I’ll never forget the day, myself. It was Easter and Lee’s friend, Matt, was with him. Matt said he’d take some pictures of me riding, which I thought might be useful for identifying things to work on and such. I wish.
Instead of me working on Apache’s inability to jump, me learning to leg yield, or anything remotely calm, I got a series of photos of Apache having one of his stress meltdowns.
I’ve decided it’s pretty educational, though. You can see my technique issues, my poor posture, Apache’s annoyed disconnection, and more. Matt already posted 51 pictures on Facebook of me and Tarrin working on this, so I’ll make the best of it and turn it into a fun picture story for any readers who are interested in what was going on in the photos.
All that took about 20 minutes of our lives, which are seared in my brain. But, by gosh, we did it! Apache made it to the trailer. Now you know why yesterday’s approach was an impoverishment.
I’m proud of myself for being patient and willing enough to move through this and make progress. I have different goals from many of my equestrian friends, but by gosh, I’m getting there.
Well, I’m back where I was a few months ago, but with a healthy horse to ride. Sara isn’t here for a few days, but I wanted Apache to keep getting the exercise he’d been getting lately, so he will have more muscle and less fat.
So, this evening I went out to release Apache from the dry pen and took his beautiful groomed self out in the round pen for a lot of trotting. That’s also good for his muscle building.
Then, well, I got on, even though I hadn’t done so since the winter, when we had our last scary ride. Luckily, this ride went pretty well. He did his thing where he tried to turn around, but not too many times. After that, it was a nice ride.
Apache and I even walked by the two younger cattle dogs and a bunny with no issues. It’s so good to have him feeling good and focusing on what we are doing. Maybe I do have a future learning more with him.
Also, for your information, Fiona is also being a superstar. I no longer have to go get her and halter her when we’re done riding or exercising. I call her, and she meanders my way. I stick my hand out with a treat in it, and she happily follows me. My stress levels are so low now with these guys.
And that’s really how I’m back in the saddle again. Just having fun with my animal buddies.
I’m never going to be a great equestrienne, and that’s fine with me. I started way too late, ran out of money for lessons, and don’t have enough time to really get to be great. But, I’m better than I was, anyway!
One of the things I’ve always wanted to be able to do when I’m out riding Apache is to take pictures of some of the interesting plants, wildlife, and scenery I see when I’m out riding around the Hermits’ Rest. Up until recently, I haven’t been comfortable taking my phone along on rides, because my phone is a good one, and I could break it if I fall.
Sara has an inexpensive phone she uses, so that if there’s an emergency she can let our spouses know to come help. I just relied on that, until a few weeks ago when Sara ordered us some really nice holders that have a water bottle and a cell phone pocked in them. They attach to the front of the saddle and can be secured really well, so they don’t bounce and irritate our mighty steeds.