Sunday 1 March 2015

All In A Muddle

This morning's lesson came a bit early for me. I was travelling yesterday and felt a bit run down when I got up this morning. Luckily, G volunteered to come prep the horses if I would buy him a coffee and a donut.  My groom works for cheap lol.

The lesson started with some ground poles. Long term readers will know Ginger and I have had some interesting times when there are extra items in the arena, so you can imagine the look on Ginger's face when she saw this:
Circle of death with a penalty box square in the centre.
S was present on the sidelines for Ginger's epic meltdown over a ground pole a couple of years ago that ended in me having a bad fall. She knows my fear is real. She was quick to offer to start out on Ginger and take her through the poles a few times. I happily accepted. And Ginger happily set out to prove to us that she is now a big girl and the boss of all the things! Seriously, she was wonderful and made it look easy and after not too much time at all, S was cantering a pole here and there.
Today you just get a bunch of recent randoms of Ginger that I (probably) haven't posted yet,

Midget, on the other hand, had a meltdown. So discouraging after our productive trail rides this week. Forward was again a huge issue, as was bending. We got it done, but the pony had her ears pinned and her nasty face on the majority of the lesson. Not exactly fun for anyone!

We switched up and I rode Ginger and had a decent ride. I'm still struggling with tension and not having the right 'feel' on her - I want to be too passive. S encouraged me to ride Ginger "like you ride Bridget!" which was exactly what I needed to hear and we had some better work at the end. And we totally kicked that pattern's butt and had fun. Goodbye, pole phobia! I've been feeling a little down about my riding so it was nice to have a big (for me) win.

After talking with S about the upcoming clinic, she encouraged me to take Ginger rather than Bridget. Her logic was that I'll learn more on Ginger, could use more help with Ginger, and will have more fun on her. Ginger is the more established horse and the one that could benefit the most from fine tuning. She is worried Bridget is still green and there isn't much a pro is going to be able to teach that we aren't already working on. Bridget is also so hot and cold she also might not bring her "A" game on the day and I'd be paying a very large sum of money to put on a demo of what a very stubborn pony looks like. 

 Logically, I know that all makes sense, but I've been practicing so much with Bridget I'll admit to being super disappointed about S's thoughts re Bridget not being 'at that level' or even worse, possibly not putting in an honest effort for me. It's not that I don't think she's right, it's just discouraging that it's not just me thinking it! We're going to keep playing around with some ideas to try to get Ms Bridget convinced ring work can be fun, but for now I think she is right in worrying a clinic with Bridget isn't the best use of my dollars.

So that leaves me scrambling a bit mentally. I wanted to take the easy way out and keep the fear demons at bay by bringing Bridget. I'm starting to feel fairly comfortable again riding Ginger in my own little bubble, but the big bad world still feels a little intimidating! Since we need to trailer in and spend a couple of nights away from home, it would be all around just easier to bring the laid back and adaptable Bridget! S is right though, Ginger is the one I need to 'cowgirl up' and take if I really want to take advantage of the opportunity. I'm anxious, but pretty excited at the same time.



  1. Interesting ☺ When is the clinic?
    Great news on Ginger being a brave big girl and showing those poles who is boss. That pattern looks like fun. If i can get enough saddle time in week after work i will try to set that up for us on Saturday. I love playing with poles and never thought of doing that!
    Naughty Bridget, hopefully this moody mare is just a passing phase and you'll have your happy camper back sooner rather than later

  2. I don't want to put a novel in the comments section of your blog so I'm going to try to summarize :)

    After a few incidents a few years back (nothing major) I stopped trusting Apollo and he stopped trusting me. Now every time I hop onto Apollo's back I have a saying I think of before I swing my leg over: "I trust my horse." and then I swing my leg over and off we go. It is my little mantra and I swear it helps me so much.

    I think you should go for it and take Ginger to the clinic! Just trust your horse and remember to breathe :)

  3. It's tough for me to change plans last minute too but Ginger and you are going to do so well at that clinic! I can't wait to hear updates :)

  4. Go with what your gut tells you!

  5. seems like Bridget chose a bad moment to remind everyone that she's the green one... but it's a happy coincidence that Ginger took the same moment to prove that she's a big girl now!

    sorry your plans got thrown thru a bit of a loop... hope the change of horses doesn't completely change your excitement about the clinic into something else. good luck!

  6. I would go with your trainer's advice and take Ginger. Push past your comfort zone surrounded by professionals that you are paying to help you :)