December 26, 2010

Poop and Mud

I arrived around 11am to see Willy.  One of the dogs came running up the driveway to greet me.  I don't know any of the dog or cats names, they are all just kitty and puppy to me.  I opened up my car to get my tack out, in popped the little tabby cat (the one whose tail had been stepped on by Riddle).  After I got my gear out I asked the kitty to get out of the car but he didn't want to.  So I put down the saddle and reached in to get him.  He cuddled up against my neck, dug his claws into my fleece and gave me a give kitty hug complete with purrs.  Right then Lorraine got out of her car, laughing at me and cat.  We exchanged niceties about Christmas but then she went on her way to quickly take care of her Friesians and then get back to family.

Willy had mud on his face and forelock when I went to get him.  It took me a bit to get him cleaned up but having baby wipes with me are always handy!  Willy seemed more cuddly today, he nuzzled me a couple times but I'm sure it was his way of looking for carrots...quickest way to a mans heart, no matter the species!  I brought Willy into the big arena.  He tried to walk off as I put my foot in the stirrup so I moved him around in a tight circle.  Willy sighed and grunted a bit.  Then I stopped him, got him set up for the mount and went up.  He still took a couple steps but stopped when I told him whoa...he's slowly getting better. 

I worked on the usual serpentines at the walk.  Did a figure eight at the posting trot and also tried some canters in each direction.  The left lead seemed better than the right.  He wanted to rush during the right canter lead.  Again when we cantered I concentrated on relaxing and moving with the was awesome and he was a good boy for the most part.  Canter is my favorite gait!  I worked on some sitting trot and asking for Willy to lower his head.  He did it a little bit, not as much as when we are just walking but I was content anyways.

I dismounted and then took Willy outside of the ring.  I was just going to ride around the outside of the ring for a bit since I was done with circles, figure eights and serpentines for today.  Plus I knew the girl who rode Ladybug, a beautiful liver chestnut mare would be ready soon and she does jumping in the arena.

I worked on Willy trotting around the ring and keeping his pace down to a nice trot instead of the quickened fast pace trot that is jarring to ride.  We also cantered up the hills on each side of the ring.  I had a great ride with him. 

When I was done I untacked Willy at the wash racks that were full of manure.  I grabbed a pitch fork and wheel barrow to clean that up.  I'll have to send a message to Susan since she had talked to all the riders to make sure we were cleaning up after our horses.  The big arena was a mess and the wash racks were disgusting with manure.  I was the first one of the leasers that I know of on Sunday so I know it wasn't any of us!  I brought Willy to his stall and then started working on mucking.  He and Two Socks were joined with Misty in their small paddock.  It didn't look like anything had been mucked on Christmas day.  The girl and her father who leased Misty on Sundays arrived so her dad joined me in finishing up the stall.  Three wheel barrow loads later we were done and the ground could be seen again.  I came back with carrots for Willy and Two Socks.  I said my goodbyes and then of course paid my dues of carrots to the cute miniature horses.  Perhaps when my schedule gets changed in April I can come ride Willy a couple times during the week, I'll have to talk to Susan about that option.  Until next Sunday!

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