Monday 8 February 2021

50 First Rides

Bridget continued to be a little ball of fire all last week, leading to some interesting rides. We had one more parting of ways. She uses that big neck against me where she'll slam to a stop, get me tipped a bit forward and get her neck down and buck. Sneaky pony. Even at my strongest I’m pretty helpless against it (especially on down banks, lifetime memories from that xc clinic lol) - if she gets my shoulders forward and can pull her head between her knees I’m done. Thank goodness she’s usually not inclined to pull out that particular trick and the technique she uses involves slamming to a halt first and depositing me fairly gently over her shoulder, lol. 

Non dramatic reenactment of the view from the ground :)

By Saturday she’d pretty much tired herself out and we were back to normal rides. Even though she’s obviously feeling fantastic and cheeky I’m still trying to be cautious with her and build up her fitness gradually. I’m so grateful to have her around, it’s a treat to have a relatively well schooled pony I know inside and out. The plan is obviously still to breed her this spring, but I’m working to build up my fitness again and bringing hers up too will hopefully ensure an easier time for her once she’s in foal.

We had a drier week, so the girls had some much appreciated pasture time.

On to Sophie. Sophie. Oh my goodness. The mood must have been contagious because she’s been an absolute nut all week - as the weather gets colder, the ridiculousness increases. By Saturday I’ll admit my patience with her was wearing thin (and that unfortunately just feeds more drama from her.) She was a bit much for the shared outdoor and her energy was affecting the other horses, so I ended up moving over to the indoor and just tying her in there while I rode B and contemplated S’s sale ad ;) 

Sophie dancing to the songs in her head

I did hop on S eventually this weekend for the first time since Christmas. My husband (G) and I were joking my life with her this winter should be titled  50 First Rides. It did indeed feel like a first ride on a baby,  she was overreacting because I’d been on her case all weekend about remembering her ground manners - it’s kind of a negative spiral where she pushes and pushes and I calmly correct over and over while she tries things every different way. Then, eventually, I break and she gets a bigger reaction, and then she’s sure I'm out to get her. It's a game, I know it is, and yet some days I still get sucked in to playing.

 It’s the same type of thing she does with other horses (and she has the scars to show for it) - she pesters them all day long and she lives for the exciting moment when someone finally chases her off and she can then be super dramatic and gallop around and play. That's usually immediately followed by over the top repentant, can’t-survive-without-your-friendship mode. I don't think she has any desire to be the boss of anything, I think she thinks it's all just fun and everyone should want to play and then she's upset when no one thinks it's funny...she's 4 years old and still does that funny lip smacking 'I'm just a baby, don't be mad' thing they do. Anyway, at the very least, she is definitely going to teach me to be better. 

"Help! Bridget is mad at me!"

On paper I guess it looks like there were a few frustrations and negatives this week. I’m actually feeling pretty happy though - B is feeling great, which means the world to me, and it feels really good to be be starting to put Sophie back into work too....the days are getting long enough now that even on week days if I plan well I should be able to fit in a short ride or outing before dark.



  1. Sorry to hear about the unscheduled dismount off B! I am glad she is feeling pretty dang good though - that's got to count for something, haha! Excited to hear about your breeding adventures!!

    Oh my goodness, Soph, hahaha. It reminds me of 3/4 year old kids when they want a candy or something - very persistent and borderline annoying and then when you *finally* snap at them, they're offended. Sounds like you got a good sense of humor about her and her silliness - I think her and Presto (Amanda's guy) would be fast friends.

    1. Bridget being Bridget does the bare minimum to gently deposit me on the ground. It's so premeditated and pony like I can only laugh. I like Sophie in spite of herself so it's easier to keep a sense of humour. I suspect if she wasn't mine I wouldn't be a fan of her at all, lol

  2. I love that picture of Sophie and her dancing giraffe moment!
    Bridget is just making sure you remember how to ride and prepping you for riding the green (and I'm gonna say more athletic) horse. She's doing you a favour!

    1. Exactly! She's perfect for getting riding fit because she makes you work for everything :)

  3. awesome that B is feeling so good tho!