A Bit of Thanksgiving

AJ reported that walking around at the breeding farm was a joy. Firefly was in the yearling paddock by now and had become very friendly, instead of shy or spooky. The newer foal was harder to visit around its grumpy, protective, very large and well filled out dam, who looked to be in foal again already — is that what made her such a grouch? Or was she that moody anyway? The little bay had eventually approached the human visitor and AJ was surprised to find herself thinking the equine’s coat must feel like what a fawn would feel like if one were to ever pet a baby deer.

When asked, AJ told the mounted rider it had looked to her eye like the horse was forwards enough. She said to see him bending and rounding up in his experienced way, made her very jealous. “The only thing I would suggest is that you work on keeping that frame and flow THROUGH transitions, because he did pop his head up and scramble a bit through the transitions, upwards and downwards."

Watching the head trainer ride a temporarily boarded horse was a mix of inspirational and frustrating.  Because AJ was so very far from obtaining any similar results with her current mount.  She sincerely hoped the horse would get some "real" (world class) riding lessons from Santa at Christmas.

Jill chided AJ on having her horse loose in the arena without covering the mirrors. They both knew that a horse could perceive a mirror as a opening and accidentally jump into it.  "No wonder at that place they think loaning you draw lines would be putting them in the hands of a novice!"

On recent rides AJ had been doing only short lengths of the hayfield and was constantly trying to vary the routine. She wanted to get him to pay attention to her! He was a sensitive horse, but he was only sensitive to whatever he was thinking about in a given moment, he was constantly oblivious of the fact that he even had a rider, and that they were supposed to be working as a team!!

She admitted that she missed having loaner time in the barn with just her and a horse buddy. It was one of the benefits of her history of horsemanship, but it wasn’t a part of the current deal. Not that she would ever mention it to such a lovely, helpful, pleasant human-horsey companion, but her introverted nature was well aware the barn time wasn't energizing to her.  Overall, she was extraordinarily grateful to be riding regularly a couple of times a week.  It was nice to feel safe and he was a nice horse.  She also appreciated that there was always something new set up at that farm - a new small course, or a new mounted games obstacle or flag or bridge or ditch to school -- that she didn't need to preplan or set up herself!

Jill was laughing about a mistake she'd made on hoofbeats radio -- she'd been mentioning how she wanted to start a "Riding With The Stars" segment but had actually called it a "Riding OF the stars" thing, ha. Would "Horsing Around With The Stars" make a better column/segment/show title? She would start by reaching out to Corb Lund, a known, actual horse person.

AJ was proposing a feature for the show about having an isolated horse on a property. They were herd animals of course, but could you get away with just providing a goat as a horse buddy, or maybe a llama? She recounted how she had once seen a miniature donkey line up horses for turns one at a time at their paddock's water trough. She'd also said the CEO of the Canadian Equestrian Federation's hand shook in hers when they met for the first time, because he had been reading her blog and found her to be a very compelling writer. Should she try and arrange a guest appearance?

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