This has been the longest week. My coworkers from Latin America have been in town since last Wednesday so I have been playing hostess for far too long (they are not staying with me, they just don’t know the area). It’s moments like this that make the introverted parts of my personality come out in full force. I love to hang out with my coworkers, especially when we are traveling, but something about having them here in my own backyard just started to become too much for me. I am a transplant to this area and in the five years I have been here I still haven’t really learned the ropes. It is also a college town so the prospect of taking my coworker who doesn’t drink, but inexplicably still loves to party, out on the town gave me a lot of anxiety. Not to mention there was a huge campus event this past weekend and the weather was the best it’s been so far this year. The streets were packed, the bars were packed, and I was wishing I could be a million miles away.
Luckily, my therapist has been very instrumental in helping me keep my cool this week.
So what if I knowingly missed a business dinner for the sole purpose of going to see Harley instead!? #worklifebalance
We had our first ride in the outdoor arena last weekend as additional footing and mag was being added to the indoor. The weather here has been very erratic and we did have one not so great ride in the indoor a couple of weekends ago. He is pretty reactive to sounds and got quite spooky with the combo of wind howling outside the arena and the BO doing some work with the tractor. I couldn’t really blame him too much, the arena doors were closed and he is even more concerned if he can’t see where the noise is coming from. Aside from that, Harley has continued to impress me with how well he is adjusting to his new home. We are starting to get to know each other more and I plan to start lessons with him in the next couple of weeks.
I would describe him as the quintessential gelding. His ground manners cannot be beat and he is the type that lowers his nose into his halter when you come to get him. Under saddle he is extremely willing, very honest, and has zero opinions. Clearly much more of a “pull ride,” he gets rushy and heavy easily. He has a longer body and is a much bigger mover than I am used to so much of what I hope to work on in my first lessons with him will be not riding in a defensive position and learning some tools to help him slow down and think more about what is being asked of him. Is “too willing” a thing?? haha
I had a phenomenal lesson this Wednesday with my current trainer on Louie. Lou is very different from Harley and I really felt the difference this time. Louie’s owner has been working so hard with him over the winter and in my lesson he gave me some of the best trot work I’ve ever seen from him. My trainer was super complimentary of our ride and I told her it’s clearly all the work she’s been doing with him lately that has produced such a big change. He didn’t throw me even half of the evasions I usually get from him and I’m hoping it’s because he is figuring out that moving this way isn’t nearly as difficult as he thought it was. These things take time. She tells me I should work on the same exercises with Harley so I try to incorporate them into our rides. What is difficult about that for the moment is that the feeling of “correct” on Louie is going to feel different from the “correct” on Harley and I am still pretty lost trying to decide if I am doing the exercises correctly on my own. Harley and I need some feedback as we try these things so I can start to memorize the way it feels to get Harley moving more correctly.
Harley gets to meet his new vet tomorrow for just a wellness exam. He’s had his spring shots and doesn’t need his teeth done yet. Is it a total dick move (literally) if I just have the vet clean his sheath?