Here there be dragons...

"I'm telling you stories. Trust me." - Winterson

Life is too short for traffic.

Could somebody please explain to me what was going on with traffic this morning? I understand it being a nightmare yesterday -- I didn't even try. But this morning it was clear out, the roads were clear, and it should've been a normal drive in. But no, stop and go the whole way. And in a standard car, this is not fun :(

There was exactly one place in my trip where it would've been possible to drive faster space-wise and that was the only place on the drive where the road was ice rather than water. And it was scary ice, so I was all for the 10km/h there -- as was almost everybody around me. No snow tires on yet and my car was sliding all over the place -- but only on that one section. Which goes to show the rest of the road was just fine. So why wasn't it going anywhere?

Ugh. Took me 2h to get in. Literally. Was not amused.

So yesterday was interesting. Got to the barn, got all tacked up and ready to go. Si was high and bouncy -- she'd been in all day, it's cold out, and I haven't done anything more than exercise her all week, so yeah a bit of bottled up energy there. So she's bouncing but I just wasn't in the mood to deal w/ a bouncing TB. You know, some days you just don't want to deal with it. So let's identify options. Put horse away before anything negative happens. She figures it's the shortest workout ever and I make sure the ride is over before the battle begins. Ok, except that it doesn't help said horse burn off steam or further training in any way shape or form. Option 2, get off and lunge. Work her properly, but (since she lunges really well) in such a way that I don't have to work nearly so hard to deal with it. However I was just frustrated enough that I realized this wouldn't likely work either (for me, not her). Go for a hack. Usually my favourite option. But oh yeah, nowhere to hack, it's dark, and there's a blizzard out. Blah.

So I look around the ring hoping for inspiration. Finally decide if Si wants to run and play, why not let her? Bring her in, take her saddle off, detach the reins, and let her go. Oh wait, I've trained her to stay with me when we walk around the ring. hahaha and she's very good at that. So she waits patiently beside me while I tie the door shut, then I back up and tell her with my body language that she should go. So she canters a perfect 20m circle around and around and around. Well, I told you she lunges well. hahaha was very impressed that w/ a very slight movement I could get her to change direction and she cantered said circle the other way. But this was not the point of the exercise so I stepped off the circle line and directed her down the long side, where she went, looking over her shoulder the whole way, clearly puzzled about this change of plan.

Change the game a little, went beside her and started to jog, so she came with me, so started to run, and she got the hang of it. Afraid I lost that race miserably. *g* So we played the race game a few times and even over some fences (well pony went over, I went under or around :)

hahaha was highly entertaining and several benefits. The first (unexpected) is that running around the ring for half an hour trying to keep up with a thoroughbred is a reasonable cardio workout, so I was feeling *much* better by the end of this. The second is that I haven't seen her really move freely since the day I very first saw her, starving and unfit, in the field I got her from. I'll tell ya, she looks like a very different horse now. And I discovered my horse can TROT. Like really trot. Like float around the ring trot. I have yet to experience this under saddle of course, but now I know she can do it. I was thrilled. And the power. Gallop, halt, spin. No problem.

So somebody else wanted in the ring, and I was very impressed that when I told Si the game was over and she should come to me instead of run away the way we'd been doing, she listened. And stood perfectly while I put her tack back on. And after that warmup was super nice and supple when I rode her :) Led to an amazing, if rather short, ride :) And so once again "it's supposed to be fun" wins out.

Might be interesting to see how today goes :)


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