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Reb wasn’t tacked when I went into the barn. Funnily enough, he’d damaged his ligament sometime last year, and here I was again, limping — was he himself limping again?

Apparently not… and I tacked him up with no worries, led him to the indoor, mounted, lead the ride down to the outdoor, not a bother on us… Read the rest of this entry »


Oh, Tuesday. I had Rebel, we were outside, there was a massive puddle between E and C, and he had decided that it had my name on it.

He was spooking at a teeny tiny one between C and M, and in open order, I kept going back over it, to get him to look at it, ‘It’s just a teeny tiny puddle, dude!’ … with no great success.

He was fighting me for the bit, and when it came to the jumps, I kept him in trot, because we were coming from the A end, and I knew he’d do that dropping-the-shoulder-thing to get me off, and wet.

We managed, although it was a battle after every recovery to get him back on track, to get him back into trot, to get him away from that damned puddle. I lost my balance a fair few times, he refused a fence a split second after I realised he was going to do so [and off I came, but it was dry under the crosspoles] and the whole lesson was a war, but nobody else but me noticed. Well, apart from the falling. [I haven’t fallen in ages, and this was a good one, flying right over his head; I still had the reins in my left hand when I landed.]

The turns after the landings were controlled entirely by him, and down went that shoulder, but I did the belly button thing, as scary as it was at the time, and I felt him have to get control of his balance. So score one for me.

I was determined to have him again on Thursday. He’s always better on his own [mostly] and my stubbornness was back. Read the rest of this entry »

I’M NOT COMPLETE RUBBISH You know, I have to say, in all honesty, that I wasn’t looking forward to riding the range last night.

I’d been nervous about it on Saturday, too, and barely admitted it to myself. I love this so much, what if I started to hate it? Read the rest of this entry »

I rode last night at 7 to make up for Tuesday being snowed out.

I realised that I couldn’t get home at 9pm, and then get up for 6am to get back to the yard for 9am.

So I switched my Thursday lesson to 2.15.

I met a friend in town for a coffee and figured I’d get on the 12.50 bus to the taxi to the yard.

And then it started to — wait for it — snow.

The dithering that ensued is appalling, so if you don’t want to read on, I’ll totally understand. Read the rest of this entry »

JIGGITY JIG Ach, I think my head was still a little woolly. Up until three a.m. Friday morning, then had to whimper through the last day of ‘school’, and despite having had an early-to-bed, and a lie-in, I wasn’t one hundred per cent.

Ruby is gorgeous: I laughed as she gave me the canter immediately, loudly enough for Nikki to ask me ‘What?’; on Ruby, a twenty metre circle is actually a twenty metre circle, even going from E to B.

Jumping though, she’s a little spooky, and I’ll have to figure out what I did wrong, because she did what’s she’s done to others, and landed at a gallop. Off I went, a thump on the head, and bugger, no time to get back on.

I got off easy, in a manner of speaking: she broke someone’s collarbone on another such landing. If nothing else, I’m newly inspired to DO THOSE FECKIN’ SIT UPS, as I’m sure if my core strength was better, I d have had a fighting chance.

I’m not sure if I’m spooked, though. I’ve got several choices of mounts these days, and may opt for an easy night on Delilah on Tuesday. Haven’t been back on Rebel yet, we’re looking at each other out of the corners of our eyes…

Best thing to do, though, is to talk. Yes, it is good to talk. It relieves one of the kind of terminal uniqueness that prevents growth, and encourages isolation. I wasn’t sure I was going to blog about it — she fell off again?? — but I’m interested in transparency here at Flying Changes. I’m fine, a-okay: didn’t need a sore head, but the warm bath was welcome, and I highly recommend Lush Bubble Bars to all my readers. If you’re going to end up in a therapeutic tub, it may as well smell sweet.

It’s so easy to get thrown off, particularly after having been thrown off. Read the rest of this entry »

Remember how last Tuesday was amazing?

This Tuesday was crap. Read the rest of this entry »

28 OCTOBER, 2006 It was the shittiest hour yet.

There was, of course, no way of knowing how shitty it was going to be. It’s my eighth week of lessons, Argo and I an indissoluble team. I’m feeling pretty good, considering that all I did was walk for my entire first lesson, two short months ago. I had begun to understand that the yelling was for me, not at me, and I felt— well, okay, I felt pretty damn cocky. I had the best horse. I was the best in the group. I was at the front of the ride.

We started as usual. We filed out of the indoor arena to head for the outdoor arena— as usual. We walked a round a bit, we trotted, circled a bit… and then it all went to shit.

Argo bucked. Read the rest of this entry »


Twelve years on from my first ever riding lesson, these posts are still wandering round and round, a figure of eight starting with today, probably, and yesterday, definitely. It’s the antithesis of how I usually do things, but… that’s horses for ya.


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