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August 22, 2017: Back in the Saddle

I had not done any riding over the weekend because we were so busy here and because it was raining on and off. It felt kind of strange, to not be interacting with the horses as much. One thing that I was doing was working on the Playground of Higher Learning shanty with Pete. It was near-impossible to do agility anyways, what with the truck parked at the side of the course.

I sensed that once we got the shanty built, that I’d be even more efficient in terms of my time, and this enabled me to deal with the fact I wasn’t riding. Yesterday evening we finished up with the building project. And today I put the items and obstacles that I most need in the shanty.

Photo taken from inside the shanty

I took considerable time doing gathering materials from the trailer and from the hay shed. And I took considerable time organizing and sorting these materials. As I was finishing up, it started to rain so I retreated back into the house for a bit.

Late in the afternoon I resumed my horsey doings. I first did agility with Tyra. It was quite nice, having what I needed on hand. I tied a bag on the lunge whip so that she could chase it – this is the start of learning to do the panther walk. And I set out the gas can with the hay pellets in it – this was so she’d equate being in the playground with having a good time. I also added items to the scary corridor.

The session went quickly because I had the materials on hand. So, time spent organizing saved me time today. I also, later, worked with Hrimmi and Raudi – did the same things – and it was less time consuming than previously.

I had this incredible revelation while working with Tyra, and this was that I could use the panther walk exercise in working with people. One might hold the clicker and the treats, and the lunge line with a bag on it, and the other might chase it.

This way, the humans can see what it takes in terms of the activity to keep the horse motivated.

Pete returned home from working at the fair – he took the trailer and assisted in rolling out the recycling barrels – and we went for two rides – on the first he rode Raudi and I rode Tyra. We did our trails. It was a great outing – Tyra is catching on to trail riding – I didn’t have any arguments about her stopping to eat grass, and the few times she stopped, she moved on when I took the crop and tapped her behind the girth. I did give her fair warning – I put the reins in one hand, so as not to pull on her mouth – and I lowered my heels and gave her a squeeze with my calf. I only tapped her when she failed to do as I asked. But I noticed in doing it this way that she was less apt to dive for grass.

It looks like I won’t be riding for a few more days. I am going to be a supervisor at the sorting area of the fair. So, hi ho hi ho off to work I go. . . .

Next: 230. 7/23/17: Stormy Goes to the State Fair

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