Today solidified that I have the right horse. Sometimes I doubt that I should have bought him. He had been barely training level when I brought him home – I (and Barbara) felt I needed a 2nd level schoolmaster. He’s a pain to get going forward. He’s not the best mover…etc.
I decided to ride outside today in the hunt field because it was just too nice to be indoors. He started out all big. He was looking around and totally ignoring my aids and he did that head snake thing. I just laughed, which is a huge accomplishment for me since I am a huge chicken. It used to be that a horse acting like he was would send me into a panic, but I know that PJ is all talk. I ignored what he was doing with his head and just concentrated on moving his hind end – right, left, forward, collected. Once I started him trotting up the hills he quickly tired out and stopped acting like an idiot.
Then as we were heading back, a deer literally jumped out of the bushes next to us. Of course, I was holding just the buckle. PJ shot forward but as soon as I gathered the reins he stopped. I turned him around and we looked the deer in the eyes, and then we both went on our separate ways (well, the deer just stood there, we continued up the hill to the barn).
You can have the best moving, most trained horse in the world but if you are afraid of him, you’ll get nowhere. I just had so much fun today and that’s what it’s all about.