To ride dressage is to dance with your horse, equal partners in the delicate and sometimes difficult work of creating harmony and beauty.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

New duds

Just in time for fall!
Lance's replacement SmartPak Ultimate High-Neck Turnout Sheet arrived while Rick and I were in Canada last week. They've been out of stock since he tore up his first one; SmartPak sent me a different model to tide us over but he damaged that one, too. (Good thing I invested in the Ultimate, which has a "10-year Indestructible Guarantee"!) This one is a size smaller than the original, and it fits perfectly.

Since we don't turn our horses out in the rain and (slippery) mud, why does Lance wear a turnout? It keeps him cleaner, reducing grooming time, it protects his mane and tail head from rubbing, and I think he grows less winter hair, which makes it easier to cool him out.

After getting ready for our trip, being gone on our trip, and coming home to rain and work after our trip, Lance had quite a few days off and I was anxious to get back in the saddle. Yesterday I went down to take advantage of a break in the rain showers, but the dry spell only lasted long enough for our walk warm-up and a little trot work. Lance made it very clear that he didn't like the rain in his face, so we trotted back into the barn. While Lance ate some lunch, I tidied up his mane, shortening the thin section between his withers and the rubbed area, and shortening and thinning the bigger section between the rubbed area and his bridle path. By then, the rain had passed and we went back to school awhile longer. We finished with the above photo shoot, Lance looking spiffy with his new 'do and turn-out sheet.

We had a better weather window today and had a good schooling session. While I'm trying to remember and practice what we worked on in our last lesson, I find myself wishing I'd written better notes and wanting another lesson to confirm things in my mind and muscles. I was thinking of entering an ODS League show at the end of this month, but have changed my mind. First, I'd rather spend my time and money building on the progress we're making with Julie's help than show at a level at which we've already demonstrated competence. Second, I've just learned my MIL is having eye surgery a few days before the show, then coming here to recuperate for at least a day and night. That throws a wild card on the table; better to not plan anything else in close proximity.

But the week before that looks feasible; off to email Julie about scheduling!

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