“With a few flowers in my garden, half a dozen pictures and some books, I live without envy.”
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
First lesson at the new barn
Yesterday we got to ride at the new barn for the first time and Alex and I have yet to come down from the high of having all that space. Our instructor's last place was really small, and the arena we used was more confining than we realized. The one we rode in yesterday was big - more of a fenced field than an arena - and we felt like eventers zipping around the place. Even Stormy acted like a new horse; I've never seen that old man so spry.
Alex took her first jump at the canter and I was so proud I almost cried, and was really pleased to see how fearlessly she worked to build on what she learned. Jumping horses for the first time is like riding a roller coaster, only the danger is more real. It's exhilarating, and the risk of what could happen any moment could spoil the fun if the excitement weren't so worth it. I
My lessons are becoming much more involved. Yesterday I learned the importance of counting strides between jumps, and the meaning of "chipping." Duchess was more than willing yesterday; there were no balks or refusals from her at all. Maybe it's because I'm more confident and less hesitant a s well.
Next week Steph, our instructor, says she may have us start to do some bareback exercises and eventually wants us to jump bareback. Ugh, OK. I guess. I've ridden bareback before. But bareback over jumps? Please, please, please don't anyone tell my orthopedist.
Here are a few photos from our day:
Alex decided early into the lesson she'd rather ride in the saddle I was using so we switched, which was fine. I liked the jumping saddle better anyway.
The barn is really awesome - large with four stalls, a wide aisle and a tack area. Here we are untacking our ponies, and looking forward to next time!