Things are going well at the new barn, and I feel like a year of some crazy life changes is drawing to an end and setting up for a quieter 2016. The riding time has still been less consistent than I would have preferred, but it’s still been an improvement over what I had previously. And finally one BIG piece has fallen into place, Derick and I got married! After much thinking and talking and planning, it’s done and we can get on to the happily ever after part 🙂 Now I just need to get through the holidays, and then we sail softly into the new year!
Remy’s been doing exceedingly well given the “we’re back to work… just kidding have another week off!” riding routine we’ve been on. He got 2 weeks off for the wedding, then I hopped on him for a “trot around and stretch while I rediscover my posting muscles” ride, which thankfully he fully cooperate for. I have to say, I’m just loving the sensible horse he is maturing into! Then 2 nights later, I hopped on him again, the night winter finally hit Chicago.
He was more, what shall we call it? Enthusiastic? Animated? In any case, we were able to channel the energy productively and got some excellent work done, way more than I would have thought to ask of him given the work schedule recently, but he’s a thoroughbred, so I should have known! He easily delivered increasingly challenging sequences of work, finally out doing himself with a graceful canter half pass from the rail into the quarterline, flying change, half pass back to the rail, flying change, around the short end of the arena and onto the diagonal, where he skipped through 3 3-tempis, effortlessly but with a bit more flourish than was really necessary.
My “OH my God, did that really just happen!?” came to an abrupt halt when all that carefully contained energy got away from me in the next short end, and after managing a minor twisty-bucky pony-style woo-hoo moment of exuberance, he became a bit too change-happy and I had to take a free walk, stretchy trot break. BUT, despite the brevity of the awesome moment, I smiled the rest of the night thinking thoughts of silver medals. If that’s what Remy can do after 2 weeks off, just imagine if I could ride him consistently the rest of the winter and spring! The goal is set.
Liam, however, didn’t handle the short vacation quite as well. His first day back he felt really stiff, which was understandable given the cold, wet weather we’ve had and resulting lack of turnout they’ve been getting rotating through the “dry” lots since nothing has frozen yet and the fields are soggy. But now I’m thinking he actually must have done something, like maybe a slip and fall. The next day his right hind was pretty fat on the inside of the canon bone and the whole fetlock and pastern area. A hand walk helped it significantly, and besides looking really stiff still, he really didn’t look lame, which makes me wonder if it’s more muscle-sore in his back or hindquarters than any particular sort of injury, and the following day he seemed more comfortable and the swelling had gone down to about half what it had been, so fingers crossed when I see him tomorrow he’ll be all better!