Saturday, April 25, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
I stopped and stared a bit. I wasn't sure I wanted to share the road with that contraption. So, Brita let me go over into the field and watch from a safe distance. They even stopped to talk a bit. They stared at me as if they had never seen a fancy white horse before.
Then when we went past the dairy barns there were Amish all over taking a lunch break from working on the barns. There was a buggy horse tied to the hay wagon that looked a bit like it had just seen a ghost. Wonder why? When we turned around to go back, we saw in the distance that one of the Amishmen had come out to the road to watch me go by. I wonder if it was the same man who tried to buy my friend Hairy last night? Hairy didn't seem to understand what it would mean to have to go work for the Amish for a living. At least I'm safe from going to the Amish. I'm too hard to keep clean!
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
To start with I was feeling pretty high. I did ignore the dog and the tractors for the most part, but I was having a hard time keeping to a trot. What I really wanted to do was work on my canter. I have heard that the best dressage horses, and even some really good saddleseat horses, have big bounding canters. My back an haunches were feeling pretty good, and I was getting quite a bit of air. Brita said that was OK, but the tail swishing up and down was "not cool". Then the dump truck happened.
I was trotting along in a fairly organised manner when the dump truck came by setting off Lucy the Appaloosey who lives in the paddock next to the arena. Brita pulled me up on the rail and gave me a warning. I made it halfway around the arena before Lucy got really wound up and started egging me on. My bounding canter started to stiffen until it was more of a crow hop. Brita turned me into the rail. I ducked left...I ducked right... so she put me right into the rail and thumped on my ribs with her heels. I wasn't sure if she wanted me to jump over or what but it began to occur to me that I might be in trouble. Then she smacked my neck and asked me if I knew what was wrong with me? Wrong? I thought we were doing pretty good. I'm running around in circles, and she's still sitting on top...My dressage canter was big and extravagant, those Pilates seem to be paying off. Why isn't everybody happy? It's a beautiful day! Lucy got in trouble too. Mom rounded her up and put her in the barn. Poor Lucy. Grounded.
We did a lot of cantering in circles. Besides the one bucking episode, Brita was very pleased with (most of) my circles. She said I didn't cheat and was very supple and upright. Since it was warm out, and it took me so long to get my thoughts in order I got pretty sweaty. I was ready to go back in and get cleaned up. The arena fence is nice an old and crumbly. I got tired and cranky and grabbed a big chunk out of it when we halted. I had wood sticking out of my mouth four inches on each side like a dog with a bone. Brita made me give it to her and said I was going to get splinters in my tongue
When we got back to the barn I got my first bath of the season. Well, half a bath. I was very good even when it tickled. The hot bath made me sleepy and Brita rubbed my face until I could barely keep my eyes open. Yaaawn! Now I'm resting in my cooler sheet drying off so Mom can brush me. I feel so clean and lazy. I hope next time we can go back out on the road though. Improvisational Dressage exercises are a lot of work.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Saturday, April 4, 2009
Today when Brita came out to get me, she first went to the corner storage and began to take out my pallet and the ground poles. The pallet I am using as a prop to learn to stand on a box. I have gotten quite good at it. Today the addition of the ground poles really interested me. I went and chewed on them a bit while she rolled them around and got them spaced to her satisfaction. Then she went and stood on my pallet in the middle of the arena. I remembered seeing those poles a few weeks ago. That was when she showed me how to walk over them. So, as soon as I saw them I knew what to do. I trotted right over all of them, then reported to center ring to get a piece of carrot. Brita laughed at me. She gave me a carrot, but she said poles were an exercise, not a trick and that I wouldn't be getting a reward each time. I went back and trotted over them again, and returned for a carrot. I got one the second time too, but after that, she shooshed me away and made me continue to "exercise". I don't think that's right. I think anything involving a prop ought to qualify as a trick and I ought to be paid accordingly. After I had my work out, she got off my pallet so I could earn some carrots. Here is a little video clip. Sorry it's so dark, but it was a dreary cold day, so it was dark inside.