Just the other night I was thinking about my winter riding boots that I purchased three years ago. This was my first year without an indoor now that I had Ries at home. And with #boisesnowpocalypse leaving a layer of solid ice over my arena, I couldn't even ride at home.
Lone behold, that next morning I got a text message from my beloved J, who texted me saying she was going to dig out her trailer and haul to an indoor because she couldn't take not riding anymore. I praised the riding gods and asked if I could tag along. She said of course and that she had the perfect horse for me to ride!
Now, the last time I rode was when I broke my foot at the end of September. Its been nearly 4 months since I last stepped foot in the saddle. I've been DYING to ride again, especially reading all of you blogger's posts; either you have an indoor this winter or you live in California.
J's house in Oregon is nearly covered in 3' of snow. Bless her soul, she hired a backhoe to clear a path from her buried trailer to the street and also spent all of Friday morning digging out the front end of her trailer. By the time I got to her house, all we had to do was hook up, cross our fingers, and load some horses!
J had me ride her daughter's newest horse, a 15 y/o OTTB, Ozzy. She herself had recently acquired a 6 y/o green OTTB, yet to be named. Ozzy is on the line of being a schoolmaster. She has a reliable w/t/c but as we understand was primarily trained in hunters. J's daughter wants to use her to learn the basics of dressage. She goes into a frame naturally, but it is extremely on the forehand and BTV.
Because she is older and hasn't been in work for awhile, I kept to a long warm up of loose reins and pushing her from behind. She moves forward easily enough, and while she can be "on the bit" it is a false frame and she truely ins't using her body correctly. Shes a sweet, smart mare and understands rider body language pretty well, so I just focused on maintaining inside bend and pushing her into my outside rein. Her natural tempo leaves a lot to be desired but when I enforced some forward thinking in her, her trot became nice and swingy. In the canter, I mostly just wanted to make sure she had the button installed. She kind of ran into a very up/down canter but shes far from fit so I kept it to a few strides and we focused mostly on walk work and some trot.
Overall, a FANTASTIC ride to start the new year. I'm so excited to tune up this steady eddy and gain some of my own confidence back! My entire left side is a disaster, so I'll be focusing on regaining some strength on my left and becoming a balanced rider again. We have a standing date of riding at the indoor every MWF, so finally I'll have some horsey stuff to talk about on the blog again!