|TFW you get up super early to go XC schooling before work, and then a fuel line breaks on your truck.|
Dino and I have been trucking along and are staring down the barrel at our next horse trial; Burgundy Hollow this coming Sunday. As usual, my schooling rides have been pretty carefully calculated as we get closer to the date of competition, and I had a perfect schedule worked out for our pre-horse trial week.
Thursday: XC Schooling
Friday: Roading or Hacking At Home
The first few days of the week went swimmingly! We practiced BN B on Monday, which we haven't ridden yet this season, and ironed out a couple areas that needed schooling there. On Tuesday I was determined to make our jump school short, sweet, and focused since it's been ungodly hot and humid here lately. Think in the 90's with about 50% humidity during the afternoon when I usually ride.
So, I set a few fences in our jump field, including a big crossrail to warm up over, a skinny barrel on its side with V poles, a cavaletti bounce, and these...
Dino's been jumping like a freak in the best way lately, and I wanted to continue the work in calibrating my own eye to see 2'6" fences as "small". So I set two at 3', and vowed that I would jump them both.
I warmed up, got the pony in front of my leg, and hopped over the crossrail and the barrel a few times before aiming Dino at the yellow vertical. The first attempt resulted in a drive-by since he was NOT forward enough, and my distance disappeared, so I bailed on trying to make that work out, but the second time around I committed to getting our good jumping canter first and we popped right on over, easy as pie. I jumped the yellow vertical again off the other lead, and then the orange once off each lead, and called it a day.
We jumped four 3' fences, and with a good quality canter, it was easy! I was, and am, pretty excited about that milestone! It's been a long time since 3' felt doable to me. Next time, perhaps I'll string them together in a line or make one of them an oxer!
Our dressage school on Wednesday afternoon went well too - I didn't spend too much time drilling things, just some easy w/t/c work on straight lines and big circles, practicing canter departs, and once Dino started to really work up over his back and reach down to the bit instead of going around in his 'cheater' frame, I quit for the day. It was too hot for more!
This morning was SUPPOSED to be an early-morning pre-work XC school at the horse park, but my truck apparently had other ideas. After getting up extra early, getting Dino ready and hooking up the trailer, we got about a mile or so down the road before I smelled gas fumes. Really, really strong gas fumes.
I knew that one of the fuel lines on Miz B was nearing the end of its life, so I made a quick call to my husband to check in and confirm my suspicion that it had finally started leaking. He told me that it was likely the case, and to turn around and bring the truck back home.
So, annoyed and disappointed, that's what I did.
I decided to at least hop on Dino at home to get some sort of productive work done since was at the barn anyway at that point, and we headed out for a quick hack around the farm. I wanted to trot and gallop around, just check in with Dino and press his XC gallop buttons a bit, and be done with it.
He was GREAT. Dino was surprisingly fresh considering the fact that it was already 80 degrees with 84% humidity at 7:30am, and he felt fantastic. Forward, eager, and ready to rock & roll. We cruised around the farm and tested the gears, and I am LOVING how he goes in the slow twist snaffle and flash noseband combination. He settles right up into the bridle and doesn't back off the bit, but when I need a half halt to slow down or re-balance, my cues go through to him right away and he takes things down a notch. It's pretty perfect! We jumped our tiny coop once (out of a fantastic canter and getting a great distance!) and quit there so I could get home to work. While we missed out on a proper schooling, I'm feeling pretty OK about the horse trial this weekend with how consistent Dino's been with his superstar canter.
I just hope we can get my truck fixed by Sunday!