Tuesday, September 6, 2011

These Are The Days

Today was the last day of my 6-day extended Labor Day holiday. I enjoyed every single one of them, especially the 4 days I got to ride. I almost felt like a rich bitch. Or a retired bitch. I am neither, so tomorrow, it's back to work for me.

Our first two rides were okay, but the last two were primo. Jaz seemed to know exactly what I was trying to do, which is get used to a bit more speed. Although we did not canter, he gave me a gorgeous extended trot that was easy and fun to ride, and may even have been pretty. Jaz seemed to enjoy himself as well.

We set up ground poles and barrels on the inside of the arena, leaving the rail free. We set the barrels up in a straight line, so we could circle around them or weave in and out of them, like pole bending. And, of course, we could also hairpin through the ground poles, which was great for flexing. We had hoped to be able to ride the pasture, but the cracks are so bad a horse — Jazu — could hurt himself or his hapless rider. He is a lot of things, but sure-footed is not one of them.

Jaz has developed an annoying habit in the past couple months of chewing on his bit, which was a D-ring snaffle with a rather large (never seen one that big), flat, rectangular plate. I'm not talking about idly rolling it around in his mouth, but chomping down on it HARD. Jaz's teeth are not that great to start with, so surely this was not a good thing.
This is his new bit, and I'm happy to report he seems to like it. He plays with it but there's a lot less gnashing and clanking going on. We were laughing because with all the various drafts and draft crosses at the farm, this bit seems so teeny — 5".

And today, I rode Poko for the first time since my trade with Heather. Even if I never ride him again, I had to do it, just to prove to myself that I could. He was as well behaved as Poko gets. His gaits were smooth as silk, just as I remember them. I thought I might feel sorry or sad, or have a case of the coulda-shoulda-wouldas, but I didn't. In fact, it only served to remind me of how sweet, kind and wonderful my Jaz is, and why he's a much better fit for me. I sure wish Jaz had Poko's gaits, but I'll take my sweet, trustworthy boy every time. Yup. I'm over the bad boy.

My holiday was so busy, I didn't spend much time poking 'round the blogosphere, so I'll be catching up with everyone this week. Carry on.


Crystal said...

Hey thats the same snaffle I use on my Dinero! He seems to like it too. So glad that you are still happy with your decision with Poko, sounds like the right choice.

AareneX said...

Fee chomps the bit when she wants to ignore me ("lalalala I can't hear you!").

My solution, no surprise, is to ask for MORE work, more collection, more impulsion. (Because I am the meanest person in the whole-whole-whole world.) Eventually she gets so involved with the work she is doing that she completely forgets to chomp the bit.

Unknown said...

Smokey does the funniest thing. When I take his bit out he holds onto it with his front teeth, just for a second or two, and then drops it.

Weird, right?

If you DO become a rich bitch, let me know, I'll come and be in your girl posse.

Esther Garvi said...

Jaz is the right horse! Trustworthiness is EVERYTHING! :-) Glad you had such a wonderful week!

Laura said...

Glad you had a nice holiday! Riding 4 days out of 6 is great...!

The going back to work part is not so fun. Just doing that today myself...boooo!

Dreaming said...

I'm so happy that you had some good rides. That makes everything all right with the world!
Maybe I'll have to get a bit like that for Pippin. He's a bit worrier. At least with your bit he'd have something to move around with his tongue!
I am thrilled to admit that I am a 'retired bitch'! Wish I was rich, too... but, teaching for 30 years didn't quite fund the bank roll that much! It is something to look forward to! But, there are days when I think about working... and having a bit more cash....

the7msn said...

Here's a little something I learned recently - apparently horses can feel a "clink" against their teeth when the metal rein snaps knock against the bit. If Jaz is weird about his teeth, maybe that's another variable you can eliminate.

C-ingspots said...

So glad to hear you got some time off work! Aren't those days wonderful!!?? I simply cannot wait until I can have my life to myself, and not have to spend so much of my time at a job away from home...just wish I didn't have to be old to get them!! Sounds like you and Jaz have a beautiful relationship...wonderful!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Apache seems to like her French Link D-Ring bit, too. After getting her teeth floated last year and giving back that crazy Tom Thumb bit and the Tie Down, Apache is much calmer, quieter and happy about picking up the bit on her own. And she's never played with her French Link bit, even though I use metal rein snaps. The little 'dog bone' in the center is there both for the horse to play with to create more saliva and a softer mouth, and to prevent the nutcracker effect that typical snaffle bits cause.


Anonymous said...

New reader, although we seem to read a lot of the same blogs. Just wanted to share my wv when I signed up for email subscription: intaste. Apparently, the subscription company knew your blog was "in taste". Wish I'd have come over here sooner!

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