This horse is now famous at my barn for wanting everyone's attention all the time and begging people to take him in. He has total "pick me" face when someone comes to change his blanket, feed, or just walk by.
|He has it standing in a stall too|
So while most of the other horses were happily hanging out in their runs all weekend wishing they lived somewhere spring didn't equal snow, mine was mugging over the gate, waiting for me to take him in and play. It's hard to maintain an appropriate pout over the weather when he is so cheerful.
Saturday he was able to play in the indoor some first which he fully appreciated and then we had a great ride. It is tempting to say his trot has plateaued some at the moment, but that is probably inaccurate. I am sure he is improving, but we are working on the same concepts every ride. First, you will steer horse even if you would prefer to chase your friends around and second, you will carry your own head.
This is another thing that is great about trainers. Because I am so easily conned into just letting my reins gradually get longer and not even noticing. You know how not to help your horse learn? Yeah, I excel at that. So it is probably taking longer than it should to get the concept across to him than it would otherwise, but we get there. And hey, keeps the pros in business fixing my mistakes.
Meanwhile his canter is just becoming fabulous and I need video. Lovely transitions both ways and holds his lead much better. There is still swapping in back, especially if something changes (you turn off the rail, switch your balance, etc) but the canter is now there without flailing. There is still some dolphin squealing because life is hard.
And we played around with some jumping, which he was perfect for. He got a little concerned about a cross rail which means he overjumped it but he has never yet hesitated to go over and that is helping my confidence by miles.
Sunday was much of the same only we added in trot in over a cross rail and canter out over a pole. He rocks at this. Locks onto the second part of the line immediately and marches right along. He isn't quite experienced and strong enough yet to be totally straight, but he is pretty close even with me on.
Just to give me something to ponder, trainer R did make a random comment that I will have to follow up on, that she thinks Odie is going to end up being a jumper, not a hunter. At first I was all defensive - he jumps super cute and uses his knees! But I think it is more that he is a powerful, expressive jumper and not necessarily smooth enough. Since I don't plan to really show, it doesn't matter overmuch to me but it is something to keep in mind, I guess.
After awesome horse time, I got on my very very crowded plane Monday (all the poor people whose flights were canceled over the weekend) and now I am in Ireland until Saturday. Almost entirely a work trip which is a bummer because it is sunny and 60 degrees, which I have heard is a rarity here...
I did book one extra day to be a tourist and have a horse trek on the agenda, so hopefully I can get some photos of that. Until then, I think I need to go have a pint at a pub with a patio!