Sometimes you only get one, but one can be enough.
Basically, Connell is of full of energy; some of it of the piss-and-vinegar variety, some of the woo hooooo let’s play sort, and I’m okay with both. Mainly. When he takes of in a gallop because he wants to GET BACK TO THE END OF THE RIIIIIIIIIIDE, well, it’s not one hundred per cent great, but so far, so good.
When I ride Connell, I find myself full of assertion, and this is fantastic. In the past, I’d get up there, and wait for the horse to show me what kind of hour we were going to have. Now, I am taking the controls immédiatement* and without being a bully or anything, firmly stating that I have goals and let’s go get ’em!
Well, you know: that’s the intention, and better than not having any all, or only hoping that I don’t fall off. So when we started jumping one night, I decided to try to do my best to get Con to take a good approach to the fence rather than motorbiking around the turn.
Out of five [six?] I got one, one good turn, and I was aware of what I was doing the whole time, and how clear my aids were, and how he just… flowed around to get to the sticks and up and over. It was beautiful.
The ones before it were what they were, and the one after it was dreadful, and if I remember correctly, he balked and I almost plopped off over his head; despite knowing better, I suspect that I took it for granted that we’d just do the same thing again, and even if I may have been doing exactly the same things, i may not have been doing them with the same amount of focused intention.
Or whatever. You think you’re focused and intent and then, uh, you find out that you’re really not. It is kind of amazing how much energy it takes to sit on a horse and make it look like you’re not doing anything.
I am building on that one good turn, and if I get two good turns — in a row! — you’ll hear all about it.
*‘Sup with the french? I need a holiday…