Our Paint mare, Freckles, is literally and figuratively a “husband’s” horse. We put a rider on her, point her nose down the trail and off she goes. She is great on the trails and that is why we have her. Hubby does not have high riding goals but he does enjoy to hack around with me now and then, so he needs a horse that knows her job. It is also nice that we have a horse we can put beginners or friends that don’t ride on and get them out for some enjoyable time on the trail.
While my nephew was here I gained a new appreciation for her. I watched him have so much fun with her and realized that she is more athletic than I give her credit for. I decided I want to spend more time with her. Teach her a little more about aids, gaits and posture than she is used to having to know. I even set a few goals for the two of us to complete by the end of the fall. I am going to take a few lessons on her, bring her to a clinic environment and compete with her in an ACTHA competitive trail ride. They are not lofty goals but definitely outside of the norm for her.
In preparation for this I need to start riding her because it has been months if not a year since I’ve personally been on her. I’m meeting some friends for a trail ride on Saturday and will be leaving my main squeeze home and bringing her instead, so tonight I wanted to put her through an arena workout to see what we had.
The conversation went something like this:
Her: Why are we in the arena? I don’t do arenas! Where is Dad? I hate this.
Me: We are trying something new. I have some ideas. It will be fun…I promise.
Her: Why is your leg touching me. I hate that…stop it. Why are you doing that, is that supposed to mean something. I hate legs touching me. Where is Dad?
Me: Just move off my leg. The leg will go away if you do. You are in control of getting my leg to go away.
A few minutes later….
Her: I gave you “the leg thing”. Why are you asking me to trot, there is a fence, I will have to bend, are you tricking me into a circle? I hate circles, I hate bending, why are we doing this? WHERE IS DAD???
Me: You’re fine. Stop having so much attitude. Be pleasant, be soft and I’ll give you a break
Her: I hate you!
Me: I know, but you are going to learn to love me. Try to relax. It will be easier if you would just relax
The conversation went on and on like this BUT we ended victorious where she started to get comfortable in her skin again and realize that perhaps I was not the vile hateful women she first thought. Clearly we need to mix up her patterns and routines a bit.