Monday, November 19, 2018

Back in Action!!!

It happened it happened!!!!!! Chimi's never ending vacation is OVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 6 fricking months (how the hell has it been that long?!?!?!?!) of pasture ornamenting has finally ended!!!!!!!! To say I'm excited it seriously an understatement because I'm SOOOOO READY to get back out there and do something!!!!! (quick side note- lameness was from hoof crack that he got in May, and then various shoe pulling shenanigans, followed by general NQR on the left hind, and basically lots of $$$ later he's sound!!!)

Marley being curious while I longed Chimi between rain storms before WS was able to come out and ride. I wasn't totally evil to her and had been working Chimi for a few weeks before she came out and rode. But because of the massive amounts of rain it wasn't very consistent.

Though I will admit it was not me that rode Chimi on Sunday. I pawned that service on an unsuspecting working student who bounces back much faster that I would if Chimi decided to leap about like a gazelle....

Working Student has recently moved to the area and is leasing a horse from a friend. When WS got the job with a local trainer, Friend sent me a message looking for a boarding situation with individual turnout for horse b/c the Trainer barn wasn't able to provide that. Long story short I pointed her in the right direction and helped her out one day with her horse so she could go home on her day off. When she tried to pay me for that day I just said "How about you be the first one to ride my horse after his extended vacation?" She quickly agreed and a date was set! (Though we had to wait till after it stopped raining! OMG so much frickin' rain this fall!!! 2 hurricanes and a recent giant storm of never rain and cold)

Chimi just hanging out while they take out one of the 2 trees that fell on my pasture fence during Hurricane Michael. 

So yesterday morning she came out and got to meet Chimi. She immediately snuggled with him and he was happy for all the extra attention b/c lets face it, Chimi's an attention whore and loves to be doted on. I tacked him up and noticed he was extra tight in his back (which is normal for him when he hasn't been ridden in a while and the temperature is on the cooler side. Riding keep his back more comfortable than not riding, basically another reason my horse is quirky!) so I told Working Student I was going to do his walking exercises a bit longer.

Chimi stealing some snacks from our neighbor's field

Every time I ride Chimi I always do a few exercises to warm up his back. I make him walk small circles and use his hind end to cross under him both directions and make him back up before I get on. This seems to help loosen up his back but on colder days it definitely takes a bit longer. Sunday morning was no exception. As I was hand walking him around he shot straight up in the air and grunted before settling back down and snorting. I looked over at WS and said "Thats why you're riding him and I'm not" and then we laughed. After a few more minutes of walking I tightened his girth and we just stood in the sun for a few minutes. I knew there was at least 1 more lurch waiting unsuspecting and sure enough while he was just standing there in the sun he suddenly stood up on his back legs, crow hopped, grunted, and then settled down and snorted like "Shit where did that come from??" The whole time I just stood there holding the reins and moved a little bit to stay with him. Poor WS looked at me like "what the hell did I sign up for?" and I said ok time to get on!

Chimi says curling is for winners!!!! Noooo says everyone else!

I took Chimi over to the fence and told WS to get on slowly and to not sit down until he's walked around fo a bit. She was such a trooper and just waited for him to settle down and relax. Once he stopped hunching his back she settled down into the saddle and started him on his paces. The ride wasn't about making him work but allowing his muscles to start functioning again and loosen up. It was really interesting for me to watch him go from a curling ball of tenseness to his more relaxed enjoyable self. Even though I wasn't riding him I could mentally feel what she was feeling and could see how much he changed while working under saddle. I really enjoyed being able to spectate from the ground because it's usually just me that rides Chimi and I never know what he looks. I could see how badly he curls at the beginning but also got to watch him relax and start to stretch and curl less.

All in all Working Student probably rode 15 minutes max but it was a great start. She did a great job with him and he only bucked once when she asked for the left lead canter but it was such a tiny buck that we both laughed and commented on how small it was! When she was done you could tell Chimi was much happier to be back in work. Later on that afternoon he had a saddle fitting appointment and for the first time in ages he stood like a perfect gentleman while the saddle fitter checked the balance. I think Chimi's the kind of horse that does well with short vacations but if it's to long he starts getting a bit mental. The damn hoof crack took way to long to heal and now that it's gone I'm glad to have my horse back!!!! I've been itching to ride for a while now and thankfully we have at least a week of nice weather coming up! Fingers and toes crossed that this is a dry winter so we can get back on track and ready to tackle the spring season!!!!! Forward and onward!!!!!!

pats for a good Chimi!!!!