Monday 14 May 2018

Ponying the Pony

As mentioned, baby Sophie got out for her first adventure being ponied off Bridget, and it
A better, fairer version on myself would have patiently set up her outing for sure success. Since this is me, it went like this:

At home:
Me: I really do need to get both ponies out more regularly again. I seem to run out of time tho. I should teach Sophie to pony off Bridget and take them out together.
G: Wait until I have a day off. I'll help you.
Me: Thank you, but I think I need to do it now. It's suddenly critical to me that I make this happen, starting today.
G: I'm concerned you might die.

At the barn:
Bridget: Ewww, why are you tying that yellow pony next to me?
Sophie: OMG! We're going sonewhere! I love it! I love you! I love Bridget! What are we doing? Where are we going? SO EXCITED!
Bridget: Ewww. She's so emotional.

Leading them both down the road:
Bridget: Ughhh...It's too hot! I'm starving! I'm fading here. Look at me, I can barely walk this direction. Lets go home and forget this stupid idea,
Sophie: OMG! Let's go! Wait, what's over there? Can I go see? This is so fun, guys! I love you both so much!
Bridget: Sigh. One foot in front of the other. I will survive this death march.

Dramatic reenactment 

At the ring:
Sophie: NOOO, don't leave me over here alone in this round pen!
Bridget: Ughh. She's so annoying. Almost as annoying as my rider. Can she not feel how weak and tired I am? I can't possibly work under these conditions.
Sophie: No friends, I have no friends anymore. They don't love me, I'm going to die alone.

At this point, we took a time out while I got Bridget tuned up, and waited for Sophie to stop screaming. Once both ponies brains reinstalled, we revisited the whole ponying Sophie from Bridget idea, trying it out in the safe confines of the ring.

But first:
Me: Sophie, you need to stand on this side of Bridget while I get on.
Sophie: Then I come around to visit you?
Me: No Sophie, you need to stand.
Sophie: But I like you. I'll just follow you around Bridget. I can help you get on. Don't leave me alone over here.
Bridget: I'm outta here. You two are stupid.

15 min later:
Me: Thank you for standing, both of you.
Bridget: This is stupid. I'm pretty sure that yellow thing is touching me. Uhhh, GET IT OFF!
Me: That's my leg, Bridget.
Sophie: OMG guys, this is so fun! Like, the best! We're all hanging out together! Let's snuggle super close!
Me/Bridget: Sophie! Personal space is a thing!

15min more:
Me: Well, this is going alright. No time like the present to try it outside the ring.
Sophie: YAY! Adventures! I want to go first! I love adventures!
Bridget: I think not, you're just a dumb baby. I am the best at trail rides...In fact, I am the best at EVERYTHING. 
Me: Slow down, both of you. This isn't a race.
Bridget: Race you home.
Me: Honestly Bridget, remember you were dying 30min ago?
Bridget: That was a false alarm. I'm not dead yet!
Me: FINE. You are not dragging me home. We are diverting up the big hill until you both burn off some energy.
Bridget: I can canter in place. Cool, right? I OWN this mountain.
Bridget, to Sophie:

Me: And yet, you cannot collect even a little in a dressage test? And didn't you convince me to give you a rest halfway up this hill last time when we just walked it?
Sophie: Guys, I'm kind of tired.
Bridget: She's weakening! Time to crush her!
Me: I am so sorry, Sophie. Bridget, I'm going to crush YOU if you don't chill out.
Bridget: FINE. 
Sophie: Please don't argue. I love you guys.

So, that's the story of our first solo outing ponying Sophie. It turned into a 60min hack after our warm up in the ring, and Sophie was a very good girl. We tackled some fairly difficult terrain, and Sophie happily figured it all out. Bridget, though, oh my. She's normally not competitive in any way. You'll recall I tried taking her out for fitness rides with the eventers at EC's and B was all "Catch up with you later, I'm going to wait over here and have a snack" It was painful trying to get her to even remotely keep up. With Sophie though, the dynamic is very different and B wants to "win" the "race" at all costs. It wasn't super bad, but a pretty noticeable difference energy wise from her normal lack of motivation!

There's a very steep 'trail' that is a direct shortcut back to the barn. I had thought we would walk/slide down, like we do every.single.ride. Bridget thought a Snowy River reinactment was in order to impress Sophie and keep things adventurous, so launched herself off the top while Sophie sensibly stopped to check the footing. Fun times. My shoulder is still thanking you, Bridget :)
 Sophie is naturally more forward and curious, so while she's not interested in "racing", her natural pace is a bit quicker/bigger than B's, and although she's very polite about pacing herself and staying at my shoulder, I think B senses she'd prefer to move out more and doesn't like it. We've all gone hiking or running with that person who finds it way easier than you, and you want to make them work for it a little. Or maybe that's just me :)

 All in all, though, a successful outing, everyone had fun, and hopefully it was the first of many more relaxed and peaceful ones (cough*Bridget*cough ;) 


  1. I loved this. Sophie is so adorable

  2. this post is HILARIOUS OMG Bridget. OMG the voices. OMG hilarious. :) Loved it.

    Glad you lived (as I am sure G is too) HA HA HA

    tears in my eyes from laughing...ponies!! RIGHT??

  3. omg these mares and their opinions!

  4. OMG, this made me laugh soooo hard

  5. Hilarious! Glad you all lived to tell the (funny) tale!