Lessons in Raking and Over a Jump....
Danguy and Dr Wicked have been working tirelessly to fix this Blogger Picture Problem, but it is not yet there, so we are going sans pictures, except for this picture of trash bags that I was able to download during a freak INage last night. Go figure. And now for yesterdays Jumping Post....
(Edited to add: Pictures are BACK!!!!!!!!!!)
First off the cleaning party was a fine event. I had a great time, believe it or not. Worked really hard, as you can see from the Very Small percentage of bagged up leaves and pine needles and pine cones here. I am no longer as fond of pine trees as I was before today, but I have to admit, it really did look nice when it got done. And it was great to hang out with everyone.
It's kind of a full service workout program, this stable. Not only can you ride, you can get a wonderful upper body workout raking. I will get fit. And want to. This summer is about getting back my FIT. Today may have even inspired me to get my own personal rake out and do my own yard. There will so be before and after pics of that, it is a MESS. Kind of like my FIT at the moment.
I did find out from She Who Owns It All (Whom I call "Poetry in Motion on Horseback" for short) that Trainer Mel may be selling MY horse Tess, So I may be getting a new horse soon. At first I was somewhat indignant, but then I realized it may be time to move on and up, and I told Poetry that was fine, I could ride HER horse. Seems like the next step to me.
(To put this in context for you readers out there: Me and my horse just published our first short story. She and her horse are #1 on the Times list with a novel. Get it? My goal is to ride well, not go to the Olympics)
I was watching the kids jump today, which I love, and one of them was riding my Tess, so was excited to see her jump for the first time. I got even more excited when Trainer Mel said to come on in and jump her myself.
Ok, so excited was not QUITE the word. More like "You are SO &^*&! kidding me!!!!!!!!!" Well, no, she wasn't. So I got my hat, and my half chaps and thought, well, you wanted this. With a few high fives from the kids (Those are the BEST kids, really, truly supportive, everyone there is) I went to the ring, and leapt up on my steed. (Ok, walked to the three step mounting thing and got on with my usual grace.)
You start with poles on the ground, getting used to a position called "Two point" Which is sort of a jumping maneuver, where your heels are DOWN, you grab the mane with one hand, so hold ON with your knees. It is very important to look where you are going, and not at the jump, too. I learned you will go the direction your toes are pointing. If they are DOWN, that's where you will go. If they are up, and your heels are down, you will stay on the horse. This is a huge incentive to keep your heels down.
You start for your first real jump at a trot. This is scary enough, there is so much to remember, and first and foremost in your mind is that this horse is going to leap this thing and it is in your best interests to stay with her. I did it three times, and if it was not done WELL, I did stay ON, which is one point for me. It's a pretty amazing feeling.
Then Mel said to try it at a canter. DOH!!!!!!! It's kind of amazing how all of a sudden the canter part was no longer any sort of Big Deal, and I cantered like a Pro. I went for it, and she stopped, I didn't keep her going at it hard enough. I went at it again, and circled her out. Could't do it.
I don't think it was nerve failing me. I think it was wisdom prevailing. Wasn't ready for it. Remember it was just last week I felt ok about the cantering in the English saddle bit. I think I can ride most days next week, and I will. And put everything I have into it.
And next week. I will canter over that jump. Or the week after. However long it takes.
And I will be fit again. I will lose this "Been spending WAY too much time on the couch with pizza weight" and I will find my muscles again.
However long it takes.
Love and Goals,