The rides have been good. Weekends are for trails. Tuesday evenings are working into my schedule nicely, I am using those as my serious schooling rides. Dressage or jumping, arena or bean field, we are working. Razz is giving me some nice bend in our circles and spirals. I am realizing just how out of shape I am too, with all the riding it takes to get the good stuff out of the boy. I've come to the conclusion that, for me anyway, dressage is akin to micro managed riding. There are too many years of me naturally sitting a horse my way. My seat is really efficient overall, but it's not always the correct dressage seat. I want to work on the boy's top line and in order to be successful I clearly need to bring my riding A game. So I have to constantly THINK. About every limb. My core. Are my thighs loose enough? (prob not) Right down to my fingers. I start focusing on my legs and the fingers go loose around the reins. And of course I stop breathing when in deep concentration, inviting more stiffness. Honestly it gets overwhelming sometimes, thinking about everything so hard. I'm just not wired to ride that way. Or maybe I am just too stubborn to want to change my seat. Or maybe I just don't want to turn my hobby into work. Either way the two of us are accomplishing nothing but good things these days.
We did have another long, nine day break. The trip was five days and I was down with food poisoning (I think) the next four. Yesterday was the first day I've felt like myself in what seems like forever. I got to the barn at 10:45 and went straight out to the pasture for Razz. He was happy to see me. You could tell by looking at him that it'd been a while since he'd had any attention. I spent twenty minutes out there grooming him all over with my fingernails, pulling out crazy amounts of shedding winter coat and letting the wind carry it all away. I couldn't help but think about what a great bonding moment it was for us as well, and I made sure to focus on his withers a little extra, in the same manner a pony friend would instinctually behave. Once in the barn I spent another two whole hours just grooming.
|this was only the first time around with a curry|
The winter shed kept coming and I decided if I was gonna ride the obsessive grooming would have to stop. Razz had some bite marks on him and I feel pretty sure they're from the new paint in the small paddock next to the barn. The two are working out a pecking order, even if it is across fences, and the bite marks are acceptable for now only. I also found a small infected wound on his upper inside left hind. In the area where they get all foamy. The infection had already came to a head and attached itself to the scab. It was only a matter of scraping the scab off and hitting it with some peroxide, followed with some of the all natural healing bee salve I make. Its a 100% organic concoction with a high bees wax content (wax is the first ingredient!!). I found another wound on his left hind heel in the soft area. I treated it the same way, peroxide and salve, but the location of it prompted me to do something completely out of my character.
Normally I align myself with the European school of thought concerning muzzles, ears, etc. I have always kept my horses as natural as possible. That shit is there for a reason, and we hairless, two legged types come along and think we know better than mother nature. I'm not convinced. My ponies have always had hairy fetlocks. But yesterday I trimmed Razz all the way around just so I could doctor his heel scrape better, and so he would match. I admit he looks a lot nicer with the trim.
|much better, no?|
|you keep on knockin' but you can't come in|
Our ride went great. Completely stress free, just what I needed. I headed over to the sand pits alone and tucked in the woods on a skinny dirt bike path I'd never taken before. It ran into a familiar trail. Initially I had to help the boy get his shit together when we picked up the pace. He wasn't thinking about where he put his feet at all. Once that was sorted the two of us carried on just fine. We enjoyed five jumps while out and about. One creek, two ditches, and two fallen trees. Over one of the ditches Razz came into a perfect hunter form, knees equally tucked under his chin, neck stretched perfectly, albeit a little too scopey for such an obstacle. He treated it like a 2'6 vertical. We cruised over it like a Cadillac and I figured that is what real jumping in correct form must feel like every time.
I was out for an hour and a half. Once back at the barn I gave the boy yet another heavy grooming session, and I can actually see the summer coat in places. I drove home with the windows down and the music up, and I thought about my horse and how much I love him for the rest of the day. Us horse girls are lucky to have such wonderful creatures in our lives.