The title of this post seems to be the theme for me with Maestro currently. Maestro is most certainly not Phoenix or Stampede who I’ve ridden for many years and know extremely well. Starting over with a new horse, especially one where no one around knows him either, requires a bit of bravery and blind trust. I try to just go about my business and act like everything is totally normal and he’s seen it all before but you don’t really know.
Last week after working extra hours early on due to a tax deadline I ended up with Friday off. I slept in a little, did my barn chores at home, then headed out to see Maestro after lunch. I got to the barn and no one else was around to ride, just a couple of people finishing up and the barn workers doing various tasks. So I got my pony ready and was thinking meh I’ll just go ride in the ring since no one else is here for me to try riding in the field with. We had walked in the field together with no issue several times but I hadn’t done anything more yet. I got on and as we headed out towards the rings I found myself thinking I should just go out to the field and walk around and see because that ring sounded pretty boring and it was muddy from some rain too. Quickly that turned into just trotting around to see. At that point I might as well canter too right? So that’s how my first full field ride with my new horse ended up being just us alone.
He pretty much rode the same as in the ring (faster and bulging towards home and slower moving away, lol) but a little more energetic. No antics or anything and happy to be out and about. Stampede was hard enough to ride in the field with others and pretty much impossible to take out there alone. Phoenix I trust implicitly and we regularly rode out there alone. Pretty excited that the new guy seems like he will be willing to spend some evenings alone in the field with me.
Saturday we had a lesson but instead of being in the “pony” ring (the smallest ring and thus where ponies show) with the hunter fences we were in the “west” ring which had fences up from the charity event a few weeks ago which had a gambler’s choice. I was interested to see how it would go since I had only done straight lines with Maestro like a good hunter rider. I shouldn’t have even worried about it at all, the guy isn’t bothered by the jumps and while the steering isn’t fully automatic we got around just fine with all the turns and everything even if they weren’t the most beautiful. Since I love doing medal classes this is all good news to me! Sure our lead changes need work and there was that one time I had to circle twice because someone just could not pick up the canter (so tired!) but it all felt good.
My parents came to watch the lesson and meet their new grandchild so I’m glad Maestro didn’t embarrass himself. I definitely need to work on my mom’s photography skills because the picture above was the best we got. She did somehow take a video using a bounce option which I don’t even know how to do. It’s really cute but only 2 seconds long (though it repeats) so instagram won’t let me post it. Love you mom!
Yesterday was a day off for Maestro but I stopped out at the barn to work on some clipper desensitization and pulled his mane a bit as well. I’m thinking he will probably need a trace clip at least for the winter so I better get him comfortable now. His previous owner mentioned that he was a bit nervous about clippers and she wasn’t using them on him so I want to get him confident. Yesterday we went from snorting at them being on nearby to getting his muzzle, sides of his face, and neck rubbed with it while eating cookies. Good pony!
Planning on a flat ride tonight although it will likely be too dark to ride outside by the time I get there.
Guys this having a horse to ride again thing is so fun!
Okay important life questions from someone who has only owned chestnuts – does this cooler work on him?