This weekend marked the weekend my bank account had a heart attack. Yes, there was a bingo sale on at the local tack shop and I was feeling lucky. While I only scored 15% off (ok, its better than the 10% minimum – or most common) I went home with some pretty fancy things. I went in with the expectation of buying a curb chain ($10) and came out with a fancy new pair of breeches for myself and a beautiful breastplate for Bentley.
Lee was taking pictures as I was tacking him up. So I said, “arent you going to take a picture of his new breastplate?” and he responded “yes, I will in the good light outside”. Bentley speaks english very well, and bounded out the door as soon as I was ready, stopped just outside the door, and posed like this for a good minute while Lee followed and fumbled with the camera. I think he likes looking so fancy! Darn it, my horse is a diva… this is going to start to get expensive!
On the plus side, he gave me a wonderful ride that night, we worked mostly on canter and had lots of beautiful canters around the ring. Soft, relaxed, and oh so beautiful. Just about perfect! Lee even was convinced he wouldnt die from riding and hopped on for 10 minutes to cool him out (despite the fact that he wasnt hot at all, not even puffing in the least).
Sunday we opted to have a playday instead of ride. This was mostly because I was tired and stressed from the weekend at work (one of the horses had a bad eye infection which had me worrying over him immensely) and I needed a good play. I could tell he wanted this too because on our way out, Geisha the super attention hogging barncat was bugging me, and Bentley chased her around trying to catch her tail.
We ran around the ring a few times, practicing transitions on my word. He never has a problem with that, so we moved on to something more challenging – jumping. Hes been ditchy when we jump these days (probably because I am so nervous to jump and he RUNS at them) so I decided it would be good to build up his confidence on the ground. I set up a small jump along the rail. Teeny tiny! But he kept ducking out of it. Eventually after a few tries, I was able to better guide him into it, and he got the message. After that, no problems whatsoever with the bitty jump. We worked the height up bit by bit, and added another rail to make an oxer. Each time I raised, he would duck out first, then come back to it, take a look and sniff at it, then jump it fine the next time. He also kept improving his distances and would start coming around the corner looking for the jump, not looking for a way out. I was very proud of him. I was also very proud that even though I didnt direct him to other jumps, he would finish the one I asked for, come around the arena, and find more things to jump (as I stood by jump 1 catching my breath). It was very funny, the first time he did it, I had my back turned and just saw the lingering dust. I said “Did you do that yourself?” and he snorted, and trotted back up to the jump I set and flew over it.
He actually easily worked his way up to 3’6″ before I told him he had jumped enough for one day and we werent going to push our luck (this close to ride season) He jumped it one more time, landed, found a pigeon in the centre of the ring, and chased the pigeon a good half the arena (then the pigeon flew up into the rafters) I was almost in tears it was so funny. I lowered the jump back to baby size, and made it skinny (about 4′ wide with no standards) for a few more jumps which werent a problem because now that hes figured out his distances, hes loving it.
After all that, he decided to pose for some more pictures. Look how beautiful I am ma!
The light looked beautiful on him, but it didnt photograph so well!
You are doing it wrong! Let me show you how this camera works!
Teenage girl pose.
Hmm, how does one become a “Lap Dog”
Showing off his buns of steel.