The sun was shining but the ring was covered in snow. I wasn’t sure what the footing was under the white stuff but I didn’t want to take any chances. However, I hadn’t ridden in a while and with more snow coming it wasn’t looking likely that there would be much more riding until spring, so I decided to hop on PJ bareback. Not such an easy task because he’s at least 16.3 hh and I don’t think he had ever had anyone on him bareback.
After the initial shock for both of us, PJ got used to no saddle and I got more confident and had a blast. I kept my eyes closed mainly because of the blinding sun reflecting off the snow. But it also allowed me to relax into the horse’s motion. I concentrated on the feel of the weight of the bit in my hands and of his back muscles swinging underneath my seat as we changed directions. I hoped it would help with my balance when I took back my saddle.
I wanted to try trotting, but PJ thought I may fall off and just walked a little faster. After much prodding from me I convinced him to take a few steps, but he was right and I lost my balance. He has a bouncy trot. I didn’t care because I was enjoying just making new tracks in the snow.
Sometimes it seems like dressage is all serious. Today was total fun, with a little learning thrown in, too. I don’t want to get so focused on riding goals that I can’t laugh at myself every so often. I was reminded of that today.