Monday, August 5, 2013

Lesson #45: City, Meet Countryside

The standard route taken to get out to Greyden is going 401 west until Trafalgar and then going north until we arrive on site. It's a bit far for my liking but at the same time, it's not the worst thing to have happen. Afterall, I get to see wonderful scenery on the way out and I always get a kick out of the "DANGER: Quick Sand, Do Not Enter" sign. The worst thing to happen to date is the new Premium Outlet malls that have opened at Trafalgar and 401.

Sunday morning was pretty quiet, but on the off-ramp to Trafalgar, there were two OPP cruisers parked with two police officers taking what looked like a coffee break. Of course, ADW took the opportunity to chastise the officers for what seemed like a waste of tax dollars (his words, not mine!). But, I mention casually that it's a good chance the officers are there to get ready for the hoards of shoppers who will eventually make their way out to this location, from the surrounding areas. More on this later!

We have a shorter lesson today because we are the only ones in the lesson. No matter. I ask to ride Trinket again because I am utterly determined to settle whatever issues I have with this mare. Sure, it's not going to go away this one lesson but it won't ever go away if I don't work at it. So, I determine to get on her and get going. The tack up is pretty quick because I totally lost track of time and we make our way to the ring, on this very cool morning.

Lenka starts our lesson with walking around the ring in both directions and then we move into the trot. She tells us to insert 3 smaller circles into the larger one, at the trot; but to be aware to continue the trot and not slow down or stop. For some reason, easier said than done! Trinket had her way of slowing right down to a walk and a few times she stalled. I'm learning to get her going better and trying to understand her better as well. Doing it at a posting trot is much easier than seated trot... which is the next exercise. My equitation on flat SUCKS.

We continue those exercises until we're both getting the flow better. I find that for seated trot, I am putting majority of weight into my heels and sort of pivoting through my ankles which is likely partially right but at the same time, wrong. This is especially likely because after the bareback challenge on Friday, I learn that my seat should be the main thing keeping me in place and not being semi-standing through my heels. It's tricky to explain without having ever done it but that's the best it'll be :P

Our next exercise is doing a line of ground poles and a cavaletti with 2-point position and half seat in the middle. Lenka reminds us to "push down" on their necks in our 2-point positions. I am starting to feel the balance points better as it literally is a slight tilt or shift forwards or backwards that means the difference between accomplishing this or not. We're talking centimeters!

Our last and final exercise is the canter. *deep breath* My objective is to get Trinket into a canter and ride the ring in a canter with as little (to no) pony trot. It isn't easy. The first go and we pony trot it for about half of the ring until I give up and bring her back. I get it the second time around but she was a little bit speedy and it always makes me nervous because her canter is much more bumpy than I prefer. I remind myself to keep my eyes up and forward because she is starting to get heavy on the forehand. We try several more times and she even picks up the wrong lead at some point and I find it a bit bumpier than usual. It is rides with this mare that I discover how much physical work and attention that must be paid in order to accomplish this. Riding is not for the lazy or inattentive!

I would say overall, things are coming together nicely with Trinket and I hope to continue to ride her and get to know her since she proves to be a challenging ride for me!

Before I forget... back to the start of this post: on the way back into the city, I have never seen so much traffic in one place before. There is a sea of cars in the new parking lot and the surrounding lots. It's completely unreal. In addition, the traffic goes back to Mavis! I can't fathom why so many people would want to head to an outlet for. It's time for planning of a new route out... next Friday might be frustrating.


  1. You're looking better and better on trinket, keep at it!

    1. it's gonna take lots more work.... :S i want to continue but i am also often nervous!

  2. is ok, you still look pretty good doing it!

    1. i'm excited to do more :D i do like these rides b/c it forces me to do things that i'm not used to. even indy is a good candidate for that b/c he's speedy too.